A leading feminist writer has accused Taylor Swift and Katy Perry of killing feminism and throwing society back to the 'demure girly-girl days of the white-bread 1950s'.
Camille Paglia says that both singers have 'insipid, bleached-out personas' that hark back to the man-pleasing, pre-feminist era.
In an article for The Hollywood Reporter, she wrote that as a result, many of today's young women fail to realize the role their sexuality plays in society and 'partying till you drop has gotten as harmless as a Rotary Club meeting'.
Describing 22-year-old Swift - who earned $57 million this year - she said: 'Swift affects a “golly, gee whiz” persona of cultivated blandness and self-deprecation, which is completely at odds with her shrewd glam dress sense.
'Beyond that, Swift has a monotonous vocal style, pitched in a characterless keening soprano and tarted up with snarky spin that is evidently taken for hip by vast multitudes of impressionable young women worldwide.'
She explains that many of Swift's songs touch on bland adolescent themes, about boyfriends and 'faceless louts who blur in her mind as well as ours'.
She adds: 'Swift’s meandering, snippy songs make 16-year-old Lesley Gore’s 1963 hit It’s My Party (And I’ll Cry if I Want to) seem like a towering masterpiece of social commentary, psychological drama and shapely concision.
'Indeed, without her mannequin posturing at industry events, it’s doubtful that Swift could have attained her high profile.'
Moving on to Perry, Paglia, 65, rather cuttingly describes her as a 'manic cyborg cheerleader'.
She says that despite Perry being 28 years old, she is still 'stuck in wide-eyed teen-queen mode' especially after her 14-month marriage to Russell Brand.
She explains that both Swift and Perry's personas are completely at odds with their glamorous and overtly sexy guises.
'Katy Perry’s schizophrenia - good-girl mask over trash and flash - is a symptom of what has gone wrong,' she writes.
In her essay she adds that she has noticed how many young women wear revealing clothing, however most seem 'seem curiously unaware of the erotic charge of their racy regalia'.
Paglia previously slammed Lady Gaga, insisting her over-the-top sexuality is actually 'stripped of genuine eroticism'.
She cites the star's willingness to dress in crazy outfits as an example of 'every public appearance... has been lavishly scripted in advance'.
Paglia's main complaint is that Gaga isn't sexy enough, questioning whether her opinion of sex is simply 'decor and surface'.
And now she says 'emotional deficiencies in sanitized middle-class life' are moving into other areas of the entertainment industry, leading to the success of the five Twilight films as well as this year’s The Hunger Games.
However she does applaud the 'authentic sizzling eroticism' displayed by a handful of high-earning female celebrities.
She notes that Rihanna, who earned $53 million last year, has an 'elemental erotic intensity', while Beyonce draws on the 'emotional depths of black gospel as well as the brazen street sass of hip-hop'.
She also cites Fifties U.S. singer Connie Francis, who was between 19 and 21 when she made her mammoth hits like Lipstick on Your Collar and Stupid Cupid as a role model.
And she claims that screen sirens such as Leslie Caro, Elizabeth Taylor, Kim Novak and Natalie Wood had far more complexity and sophistication than the actresses of today.
She adds: 'Middle-class white girls will never escape the cookie-cutter tyranny of their airless ghettos until the entertainment industry looks into its soul and starts giving them powerful models of mature womanliness.'