New York University’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music launched its first-ever class on Taylor Swift, according to Variety.
The course, which was introduced on January 26 and will continue through March 9, is taught by Rolling Stone staff writer and NYU alum Brittany Spanos. “My official comment is that my students already rule and i am very excited for the rest of the class xo,” Spanos wrote on Twitter yesterday. A self-proclaimed Taylor Swift “super fan” Spanos also told Variety she hopes to help students “rethink how to engage with one of the world’s biggest and sometimes divisive stars.”
Per Variety, the course will cover the Grammy award-winning singer’s entrepreneurial skillset, enduring presence in the music industry and evolution as an artist. Students will also learn about the legacy of pop and country songwriters, discuss the exploitation of youth and girlhood in the media and music industries and examine the politics of race in contemporary pop music.
“This course proposes to deconstruct both the appeal and aversions to Taylor Swift through close readings of her music and public discourse as it relates to her own growth as an artist and a celebrity,” reads the course description. “Through readings, lectures and more, the class delves into analyses of the culture and politics of teen girlhood in pop music, fandom, media studies, whiteness and power as it relates to her image and the images of those who have both preceded and succeeded her. We’ll also consider topics like copyright and ownership, American nationalism and the ongoing impact of social media on the pop music industry.”
The course will also be chaired by music writer and musician Jason King, who told Variety a class on TSwizzle was a “no-brainer” when Spanos suggested the idea.
“She’s a Taylor fan, but she also understands how to contextualize her culturally, and get students to think more deeply about her and her music through the lens of gender, feminism, race and class, and other categories related to identity, and that deeper thinking is what this program is all about.”
Ms. Swift has been asked to speak to the class, though there’s no word yet if she’s accepted that invitation. And unfortunately for the Swifties who are more than ready to enroll and go into boatloads of debt for a chance to study their idol (myself included), the 7-week class “has a long waitlist,” per the report.
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