Taylor Swift may be best known for writing songs that portray her as a wholesome, virginal sweetheart who is victimized by sexualized, boyfriend-stealing “other women.” Within this, there has been increasing critical discussion of the role gender-based stereotypes play in her music.
3. This Her Campus article sums up the issue neatly:
“Part of Taylor Swift’s shtick is to slut-shame in her lyrics. In ‘Better Than Revenge’, she takes a swipe at a girl who apparently stole her boyfriend, ‘She’s an actress/But she’s better known for the things that she does on the mattress.’ The Queen of Wholesome often employs guilt-mongering tactics to put down the mean girl/cheerleader types who, she assures us, are more sexual than her.”
4. Tumblr users have also noticed that Swift’s lyrics frequently villify the sexuality of other women, as in this post by Sherlocks:
“As shown through her songs that feature comments about ‘the other woman’ this other woman is always sexually available, dresses provocatively, and is DEFINITELY NOT A VIRGIN. Because obviously, a woman’s worth is based purely on the amount of sex she has had.”
5. Sady Doyle, for the feminist magazine Bitch, says Taylor Swift organizes the women in her music into two camps:
“Teen Girls of America, here are your choices: have sex and wind up broken and sad and feeling as if you’ve lost ‘everything you had,’ or wait until your untouched vagina accumulates enough charge to make you rich and famous. Because your sexuality should never be an end in and of itself; it should be something you strategically employ to get what you want.”
7. Here’s every song Taylor Swift has written about having a romantic rival:
“Teardrops on My Guitar”
I’ll bet she’s beautiful, that girl he talks about
And she’s got everything that I have to live without
She better hold him tight, give him all her love
Look in those beautiful eyes and know she’s lucky ‘cause
“Should’ve Said No”
I can’t resist
Before you go tell me this:
Was it worth it?
Was she worth this?
You should’ve known that word, with what you did with her
Get back to me… (get back to me)
She can’t see the way your eyes
Light up when you smile.
She’ll never notice how you stop and stare
Whenever she walks by.
She don’t even know you,
She’s never gonna love you like I want to.
She’s never gonna see the light
No matter what you do.
She don’t even know you.
Baby, let me love you,
She can’t see the way your eyes
Light up when you smile.
“The Other Side of the Door”
And I broke down crying, was she worth this mess?
After everything and that little black dress
“You Belong with Me”
You’re on the phone with your girlfriend ‒ she’s upset,
She’s going off about something that you said
‘Cause she doesn’t get your humor like I do.
I’m in the room ‒ it’s a typical Tuesday night.
I’m listening to the kind of music she doesn’t like.
She’ll never know your story like I do.
But she wears short skirts
I wear t-shirts
She’s cheer captain
And I’m on the bleachers
Dreaming about the day when you wake up and find
That what you’re looking for has been here the whole time.
I sneak in and see your friends
And her snotty little family all dressed in pastel
And she is yelling at a bridesmaid
Somewhere back inside a room
Wearing a gown shaped like a pastry
She floats down the aisle like a pageant queen
But I know you wish it was me,
“Better Than Revenge”
She came along, got him alone and let’s hear the applause
She took him faster than you could say “sabotage”
I never saw it coming, wouldn’t have suspected it
I underestimated just who I was dealing with
She had to know the pain was beating on me like a drum
She underestimated just who she was stealing from
She’s not a saint
And she’s not what you think
She’s an actress, whoa
She’s better known
For the things that she does
On the mattress, whoa
Soon she’s gonna find
Stealing other people’s toys
On the playground won’t
Make you many friends
She should keep in mind
She should keep in mind
There is nothing I do better than revenge
She looks at life like it’s a party and she’s on the list
She looks at me like I’m a trend and she’s so over it
I think her ever-present frown is a little troubling
And she thinks I’m psycho ‘cause I like to rhyme her name with things
“I Knew You Were Trouble”
And the saddest fear comes creeping in
That you never loved me or her, or anyone, or anything, yeah
17. The “other woman”-as-enemy trope is visually represented in many of Swift’s music videos, as well. Tumblr user Sexistculture points out the recurrence of villains played by evil brunettes:
Taylor Swift the Product (who I’m sure varies a great deal from Taylor Swift the Person) strikes again with “Mine” which will no doubt be played 12 times an hour on every friggin’ station from now until the next time she comes out with another single about being pure and innocent while wanting a boy who is an angelic being filled with light and winning his heart from the evil girl who wears colors and probably fucks.
Seven out of 15 of Taylor Swift’s music videos feature brunette bad girls who use their feminine wiles to steal Taylor’s Prince Charming. And what’s even weirder is that sometimes, the “other woman” in a video isn’t even mentioned in the accompanying song’s lyrics.
19. “The Story of Us” — A brunette makes out with a guy in the library, unrelated to anything else in the video.
20. “Teardrops on My Guitar” — The boy Taylor likes makes out with a brunette in the hallway.
21. “Picture to Burn” — The boy Taylor likes is now dating an edgy-looking brunette.
22. “White Horse” — The woman who tells Taylor about her boyfriend cheating is a dark-haired girl who is later implied in the video to be the “other woman.”
23. “We Are Never Ever Ever Getting Back Together” — Taylor’s boyfriend is being groped by a brunette at a bar.
24. “You Belong With Me” — The mean, popular girl is played by Taylor Swift in a black wig.
25. “I Knew You Were Trouble” — There’s a montage of Taylor’s boyfriend making out with dark-haired girls in a nightclub.
It’s important to note that Swift doesn’t think of herself as a feminist. When asked whether she considers her music empowering to women in an interview with Ramin Setoodeh of The Daily Beast, she said this:
“When people say things about me empowering women, that’s an amazing compliment. It’s not necessarily what I thought I was doing, because I write songs about what I feel. I think there’s strength when you’re baring your emotions.”
In a follow-up question, Setoodeh asked whether Swift thought of herself as a feminist. This was her answer:
“I don’t really think about things as guys versus girls. I never have. I was raised by parents who brought me up to think if you work as hard as guys, you can go far in life.”
27. Swift might not think of her songs as “guys versus girls,” but many of her songs make much of “girls versus girls.” And that’s much of the source of the backlash against a singer who actively presents herself as a role model for young women.
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How dare she date men, be upset if they cheat, be upset when they break up, be upset when she sees them with someone else, etc. She’s a totally normal human being with feelings and makes money by putting them to music. How damn terrible. & guess what? Her usual song subject of heartache will change in the future, when she finds a hubby, has kids, all that crap. Good grief, I’m more irritated at people trying to tear Taylor apart than Taylor herself. It is all completely ridiculous.
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I think everyone is looking a little too into this. I have tapered off as a fan of hers because I do feel like her material is all very similar. I don’t mind her content I just don’t think she is able to produce it as well because she’s been doing it too many times now. But aside from that, I think these are really normal feelings for young girls to have. I don’t think she’s promoting anti-feminism or that she hates other women. She’s just experienced a lot of moments where she’s felt jealous of other girls or felt threatened by other girls in her love life. Again, I think that’s pretty normal. And she’s so popular because her fans can relate to that.
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Everything that was shown on this article are just little things that are being pointed out with little ideas that pop into other peoples heads. Taylor is just writing how she feels like any other artist. At least she writes her own music unlike a lot of music artists today. People need to stop looking so deeply into her life and stop trying to criticize all of the things that she chooses to do with it. She is twenty two years old. She is one person who is very successful and works her ass off to make her fans happy. The majority of her fans are young, and if you ask me, she is an amazing role model for those girls. Her songs are just her personal journal that she decides to share with the world. She’s not the first artist to write a song about somebody. Taylor is a genuine girl who wants her fans to be happy. And she will continue to make them happy. So stop thinking that she hates women. Every girl out there has given a girl the cold shoulder because the guy they like is with the girl instead of them. So get over yourselves and find something better to do with your lives. Don’t focus so much on other people, focus on yourself and make a difference in the world. This is getting you no where.
I love her music.Not anybody can change my mind. I respect Taylor for thinking about how she dresses. She said that 12 year old girls are watching her. I wished that more women singers thought like that. I hope that she never changes.Look at Hannah Montana, now shes Miley Cyrus that dresses slutty. After having all the 12 year old girls all being about Hannah.I wished that she would of stayed Hannah Montana.
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Oh for God’s sake, isn’t that just about right in today’s screwed up world, Let’s take a girl who hasn’t done anything terrible,no DUI,no drug arrest or overdose, no unplanned pregnancy,no exposing of her girlie bits,accidently or on pupose, just a girl who writes songs, performs and sells lots and lots of records doing it. Damn! let’s tear her down cuz that’s what women do best to other women! Taylor Swift hasn’t done anything to anybody, leave her alone,for once appreciate a decent human being for just being decent,she has no agenda,now go get a life and look at yourselves in the mirror!
1.People can still be questionable and not do any of those things you just listed.
2. Yes, she does have an agenda. She wants people to feel sorry for her because she portrays herself as the victim in all of her relationships. Yes, there are songs where she takes responsibility for her relationships failing, but that’s only two songs (I Knew You Were Trouble and Back to December).
3. Assuming that women are tearing her down because “that’s what women do” is sexist. This article gives legitimate reasons to question Taylor Swift and all you got out of that was, “Ugh women! They’re just made to tear other women down!” You’re just perpetuating the idea that women shouldn’t be taken seriously.
Ever stop and think for a moment that she’s doing this to kind of bring home a feeling of being the perpetual outcast? From what I’ve heard and read she wasn’t really all that well liked in school, and has always had issues socially connecting with people because of her decision to pursue her music. Never being the one to ‘get the guy’ could be her way of interpreting that feeling of always being on the outside looking in. I find her dating around to be a desperate struggle to find that one person who can understand her without her having to explain herself, to be instantly in her inner circle. which is next to nearly impossible given her profession. She chose to do what she loved and I think she’s finding she’s suffering for it, and is probably a very lonely sort of person. It’s why I never envy celebrities. I may be a nobody but at least I’m happy and have genuine people around me in my life who love me for who I am, and not for what I might be able to do for them.
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1. feminism is not “girls vs guys,” ms. swift, thanks for playing though. 2. aside from the fact that she acts like a petulant fifteen year old, ALL HER SONGS ARE THE SAME. 3. and it is a problem she writes/acts this way. just as she said herself: she is an example to young girls, it’s her responsibility to stop tearing other women down OVER A BOY. maybe taylor swift needs to start dating quality human beings. what does it teach young girls when the ultimate prize is a boyfriend? taylor has the fame and attention to use her talents to send more empowering messages but she isn’t any better than the other pop stars she tries to separate herself from.
- js Does Taylor Swift Hate Other Women?
*sigh* ” Because obviously, a woman’s worth is based purely on the amount of sex she has had.”” Yeah, the lyric that comes just before that line is “I thought I was gonna marry him someday but I realized some bigger dreams of mine”. And later on, “But in your life you’ll do things greater than dating the boy of the football team”. Pretty sure both of those are feminist statements.
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This is fucking stupid. At the beginning you bash her for being too “virginal” (Something she has NEVER claimed to be!) and not “sexual” enough and then say she’s not a role model to 12 year old girls?! What is wrong with being a successful female and not having a sexualized image? Isn’t it antifeminist to say that Taylor Swift shouldn’t write about real girl issues like a cheating boyfriend or mean girls, and should instead be that girl? Isn’t it pretty antifeminist to say a woman should only write about certain things? And can only the girl wearing short skirts and having sex with everything that walks be an empowered woman? NO. Feminism to me means a woman being free to be whatever she wants to be, not changing who she is to fit the mold of what the “feminists” tell her to be. I’d say the fact that Taylor Swift is her own manager and CEO and writes or co-writes ALL of her songs without trying to conform to what EVERY other female in pop is doing (regurgitated shit written by the same few producers, sang in skimpy outfits with cleavage everywhere) is pretty damn inspiring and empowering, much more so than her being what you people want her to be!
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No mention at all of the song “Girl at Home”. In the beginning the song says… “I don’t even know her,
But I feel a responsibility,
To do what’s upstanding and right,” She continues later in the song to tell the guy she isn’t interested and he should go back to his girl. She is telling him to treat his girlfriend better. “Don’t look at me,
You’ve got a girl at home,
And everybody knows that,
Everybody knows that,
Wanna see you pick up your phone,
And tell her you’re coming home,
Don’t look at me,
You’ve got a girl at home,
And everybody knows that,
Everybody knows that,
Don’t look at me,
You’ve got a girl at home,
And everybody knows that,
Everybody knows that.”
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Wow, this article makes absolutely no sense. Her songs aren’t about “slut-shunning” (which, by the way, I think it’s commendable. Being a slut is not OK). They’re about a girl who is insecure and unnoticed, because she is not open about her feelings, and the guys she falls in love with pick other girls. Her songs are about feeling bad about herself and trying to make herself feel better by saying “I have so much to offer this other person isn’t providing you and you’re stupid for not seeing that.” And what’s the deal with the brunette thing? Who wrote this, a 12 year old? It’s called “antagonist” she is a blonde and the good girl, so her antagonist is a bad girl and a brunette; it’s a very common thing in books and movies to represent you opposite this way…
I don’t know you, but you have no place to be telling others that being a slut is “not okay”. That’s fine and dandy if you don’t want to be a slut, but everybody else is within their own damn rights to do whatever they want with their own bodies. Not only is it no business of yours, you are *certainly* not on that jury!
I’m not even going to argue with your belief that being a slut is not okay. But what exactly makes a girl (because it’s always a girl, of course) a slut? Definitions I’ve seen: 1. anyone who has sex outside of marriage (but over 90% of Americans have premarital sex, so that’d be just about everyone)
2. anyone who has sex with more than 2 or 3 people (which is probably most people)
3. anyone who has sex with, say, 8 people
4. anyone who has sex with 10 or more people
5. anyone who has sex with more than 15 people
6. anyone who has sex with someone they aren’t in a relationship with
7. anyone who has sex on the first date
8. anyone who has sex before the 4th date
9. anyone who has sex with someone they’ve been dating less than a month
10. anyone who has sex with someone they’ve been dating less than 3 months
11. anyone who has sex with someone they’ve been dating less than 6 months
12. anyone who can’t remember the names of everyone they’ve had sex with
13. anyone who has sex with someone they don’t care about (which is different than “not in a relationship with;” you can easily have a friends-with-benefits thing with someone you really care about but aren’t dating) So…which is it? I’m dead serious that I’ve seen each and every one of those being the definition of “slut.” If you want to say being a slut is wrong or shameful, you go right ahead, but since no one can even agree on what it MEANS…
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1. Black is beautiful! Brunettes rock! I should know, I am one.
2. Sour grapes don’t make the salad taste better.
3. Some people are having a bad hair day.
4. Some people bought a lot of Taylor Swift videos.
5. Did you license those images?
6. Most brunettes aren’t this insecure, thank Adonai.
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Why are we searching for a villian? Did someone really spend time going through each video to find Taylor Swift has a vendetta against every women on this planet? Especially the brunettes, guys. Yes, she implies that the girl she perceives as taking the guy she likes is a slut. Yes, she wrote a good amount of these types of songs when she was probably a kid, too. Lets remind ourselves teenagers don’t make the best decisions. I have an idea though- let’s burn her at the stake! She’s singing about be sexually inactive- is that actually the worst message you can imagine being blasted to your children? She makes her career as someone young girls can identify with who isn’t the most popular; I don’t think she’s just slut shaming because fuck all the other ladies in the world. Get ahold of yourself, Buzzfeed.