M.I.A. has reacted to being awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for “services to music.”
The British-Sri Lankan rapper, honoured via her real name Mathangi Arulpragasam, has used her music to tell the story of a refugee having experienced her family fleeing the civil war in Sri Lanka from a young age.
Responding to the news of her MBE, M.I.A. paid tribute to her mother who spent a large portion of her life working a minimum wage job working in the same field. “I’m honoured to have this honour, as it means a lot to my Mother. I want to honour what my mum spent many hours of her life doing,” she wrote in a post on social media.
“She is one of the 2 women in England who hand stitched these medals for the last 30 years. After receiving asylum my mum and cousin took this job in 1986, because it was the only non English speaking manual labour she could find.
“She spent her life in England hand sewing 1000s of medals for the Queen. No matter how I feel or what I think, my Mother was extremely proud of the job she had. It’s a very unique situation for me where I get to honour her most classiest minimum wage job ever.”