Madonna, a word known to some to mean the Virgin Mary. But for many, when such a word is heard, we think of the Queen of Pop herself. A woman who did as she pleased, stood up for what she believed in and set a new way of thinking about not only music, but about female participation in the music industry. She rose to stardom so quickly in 1984 that the public lost sight of her musical virtues and started to focus solely on her persona. We need to keep one of Madonna's greatest achievements in mind, the extent to which she was able to influenced the media and the public with her music, videos, publicity and image. Testimonies from co-workers and interviews indicate that Madonna was very much in control of almost every dimension of her media persona and her career. She wanted her music and videos to open up a whole new range of possible subject positions that female artists could explore. Her style is assembled from the music's of many different genres, and her visual images draw upon the conventions of female representation that circulate in film, advertisements and stage shows (McClary, 1991 p. 150). The album entertains a number of refreshing ways of constructing identities that reject the rigidness and defining properties of society, while still being open-minded and fluid. Her song "Express Yourself" she turns her "Material Girl" image around, criticizing material things and asking for respect. She insists on being taken seriously with this album, while in a light that refreshes her persona and keeps up with ongoing culture. The album's title track conveys themes of survival, pleasure and resistance to closure that are not only reflected in the lyrics, but are reinforced in the iconic video as well.
During the late '80s, in the wake of her recent unsuccessful endeavours with film and Broadway, and having recently turned 30, the age at which her mother died, Madonna was experiencing a great deal of emotional strain.