4:46 pm - 01/17/2013

Does Taylor Swift Hate Other Women?

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Here's everything you need to know about the growing feminist backlash against the country pop star and her music. (Contains quotes from tumblr so get ready to whine about real journalism, everyone!)

Taylor Swift and her hate for BrunettesCollapse )
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spacebound09 17th-Jan-2013 11:32 pm (UTC)
means she's no different than half of ONTD then lol
iamtheliquorr 18th-Jan-2013 05:18 am (UTC)
lol this accurate comment deserves more props
hera_bearrra 17th-Jan-2013 11:33 pm (UTC)
Didn't Tina Fey have a whole passage in her book about getting her daughter to play with a brunette doll instead of a blonde doll? And she said a bunch of problematic stuff.
robertsbox_xo 17th-Jan-2013 11:34 pm (UTC)
yeah tina fey slut shames all the time
lulufairybubble 17th-Jan-2013 11:52 pm (UTC)
that she does. It's the major issue I have with Tina and Amy. They both mean well but it all comes off as adult special snowflake. I was very put off by how Tina spoke of Paris Hilton...all while promoting mean girls and the book. It was very hypocritical.
astormatsea 17th-Jan-2013 11:37 pm (UTC)
i didnt read her book but tbh tina fey seems insecure to me
mhfromnh 17th-Jan-2013 11:38 pm (UTC)
what color is her daughter's hair? I used to think I wasn't pretty because Barbie was blonde and I wasn't.
mcwicca 17th-Jan-2013 11:41 pm (UTC)
What is with the weird hair color competition we have in our society? It makes so sense to me at all.
tankmachine 17th-Jan-2013 11:47 pm (UTC)
i think the point she was making there is that she doesn't want her daughter thinking that blonde = beautiful and brunette doesn't bc that's a mindset that a lot of people grow up having i guess but idk
kwikimart 17th-Jan-2013 11:34 pm (UTC)
I think Taylor just has A LOT of internalised misogyny.
The hilarious is that I don't think she even believes a lot of the crap she spouts in her songs, she's just very calculating.
At the same time she also manages to be incredibly immature, she comes across as someone that believes she's in high school and is the most popular girl there.
Anyone that gets in the way of what she wants/believe she is entitled to is immediately The Enemy and she becomes the victim, no matter how unfair or inaccurate that is.
Even her friendship group is carefully cultivated to make her look 'cooler'.

crystalzelda 17th-Jan-2013 11:36 pm (UTC)
We can say whatever we want about her, she knows how to market herself beautifully. It's all so calculated, but it's interesting to see that people are starting to catch onto it, probably because she's been doing it so long and that Haylor PR stunt was so painfully obvious.
thirteencands 17th-Jan-2013 11:51 pm (UTC)
mte. everything from the misogyny to her pr stunts and her public appearances, everything about her is irritating. literally HOW does she have that many stans
dirtyknife 18th-Jan-2013 12:19 am (UTC)
I agree with everything in this comment.
metyouwho 18th-Jan-2013 12:33 am (UTC)
Yup, loads of internalized misogyny. On two different songs she refers to mothers as being pretty/having nice eyes and fathers as being smart/ambitious.

(Superman and The Best Day in case anyone comes at me!!)
therearewords 17th-Jan-2013 11:35 pm (UTC)
Tumblr used as source again? That's like using the message board of your local supermarket as a source.
asa_chan 17th-Jan-2013 11:36 pm (UTC)
I had to listen to We are never ever blaaaah and man, her voice is grating.
lucky_latkes 17th-Jan-2013 11:36 pm (UTC)
This Lilo Pelekai looking loser. She didn't invent the wheel, though. Female singers have been doing this since popular music came about. :/
spartacus 17th-Jan-2013 11:36 pm (UTC)
lol at searching for meaning in Taylor Swift songs.
tangerinefriday 17th-Jan-2013 11:36 pm (UTC)
I see what this article is getting at, at the same time it all feels like a bit of a stretch, like way too big a deal is being made of her lyrics/ image, etc.

And I'm pretty sure she isn't making all of the creative and directing decisions about her videos. On top of all of that, if you are going to be AS aware of your effect on 12 year old girls as she is, there is a ton of shit to balance and consider. That shit can get maddening I'm sure, and it usually ends in a bunch of messy hypocrisy, intended or not. That's why it's safer to not get into thinking too hard or analyzing the types of music that 12 year old are likely to be really into. lol.
crystalzelda 17th-Jan-2013 11:43 pm (UTC)
No offense to you, but I really don't get the whole "don't look for meaning in media" thing people argue with. Music and lyrics, especially from someone like Swift who wins lyric writing awards, are significant and can be internalized, even moreso when we are young and vulnerable and looking for guidance from any source - Swift is popular, approachable, successful. She's what so many girls want to be, and when she refers to women she competes with in such negative manners it encourages the thinking that women are the enemy, that you are in competition with them for affection, that they're not as good/nice as you are.

You don't have to agree with that assessment, but I just really am not here for the "oh, it's for 12 year old girls, it's not deep or worthy of examination". She makes millions of dollars off of this image and has legions of fans who pore over her lyrics and read every word that comes out of her mouth at a time where they are mot susceptible to peer pressure. Yes, it is worth being analyzed.
thirteencands 18th-Jan-2013 12:05 am (UTC)
bow @ you in this post
tangerinefriday 18th-Jan-2013 12:56 am (UTC)
I didn't say to stop looking for meaning. I said that if you do you are bound to get a lot of messy hypocrisy because of all sorts of contradicting intentions. There isn't going to be one conclusion, one way out, it won't boil down to something that makes sense. She wants to be an artist who writes songs about her experiences and her feelings - but she also wants to be the best possible image she can for pre-teen girls. I'm not really sure you can have both as a famous 23 year old who likes to date around (not an issue with me, I'd do the same) and who likes media attention.

I think if her audience were more of her peers, there would a kind of complexity possible in her intentions, and in the analysis of what she does, that just isn't doesn't make sense when you consider that this is music for little girls.

And all that aside, I feel like society doesn't give pre-teens enough credit. I think they can figure out what is bad and what is good and what is mean or unnecessary, etc, after some trial and error. Even if they love her now, I don't think they will take the word of Taylor Swift as creed, never to be recovered from again. When I was around that age I listened to the crazy, super angry Tool albums about killing yourself and prison rape and brainwashing. I'm grown now, I never considered doing anything violent or believing in it as a way of life. I'm fine. I read Jane Austen.
mcwicca 17th-Jan-2013 11:38 pm (UTC)
I have had this problem with her for a long time. I do think she's gotten better about shaming other women, based on what I was able to make myself listen to on her new album before I get up. I cut her a bit of slack because of how young she was when most of her stuff was released, though I would respect her a lot more if she made a statement like "I've outgrown blaming other women for this and that, that's not helpful/I don't endorse it" but I kind of doubt she will. Her videos tend to be worse than the lyrics so idk if she's gotten better about that. Hopefully as she gets older she'll stop playing the victim so much.

Listening to her latest stuff, I realized my criticism has shifted from her content to the fact that she's just not very good. She can write a catchy tune but her lyrics are generally not very deep or complex at all, and she can't really sing. Take away the slutshaming and she's just mediocre at best.
soma910 17th-Jan-2013 11:41 pm (UTC)
What I don't get is if the guy is with someone who's as horrible as she says they are in her songs, why the hell would you want that guy then? I mean, what does it say about you if the guy picks girls you don't approve of?
mhfromnh 17th-Jan-2013 11:41 pm (UTC)

and now you have something to do for the long weekend.
crystalzelda 17th-Jan-2013 11:46 pm (UTC)
exactly, I get the brunette thing is more anecdotal than anything but it is a REAL literary trope that blondes are pure little angels and she's obviously playing right into it.
ivysaur 18th-Jan-2013 01:16 am (UTC)
This. The ordinary good-girl brunette/evil blonde queen bitch thing is very recent, whereas the "pure, angelic blonde" trope has been going on for centuries and never completely went out.
cscgrl4life 17th-Jan-2013 11:43 pm (UTC)
Ugh this reaching article. Buzzfeed needs to stick with what they do best..cat gifs.

The slut shaming of her also needs to stop. My former roommate used to hate her and always called her try-hard (but weirdly worshiped Rihanna)and a slut/whore. Girl is what 22? If I were famous in Hollywood I'd be dating every hot guy I possibly could.
tankmachine 17th-Jan-2013 11:45 pm (UTC)
idk my my girl cousin haaaaaates her lmao
cageyb 17th-Jan-2013 11:46 pm (UTC)
To be honest, I don't see how many of these songs are any different from lyrics written by dudes who frequently opine in their songs that the girl they want is with some other guy who sucks and is worse than them and why won't she be with meeeeeeeeeeeee. Like how are any of these songs thematically different from Rumour Has It, Jessie' Girl, Jolene, Misery Business, and other hit songs that present the same questionable message in terms of how they present the romantic rival? Taylor isn't doing anything uniquely terrible here with these themes. If anything, she's carrying the torch of a really tiresome writing tradition that people and especially men have been doing for decades if not longer.
anolinde 17th-Jan-2013 11:48 pm (UTC)
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

Not slut-shaming.

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)

Not slut-shaming.

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.

Not slut-shaming.

And I broke down crying, was she worth this mess?
After everything and that little black dress

Not slut-shaming.

But she wears short skirts
I wear t-shirts
She's cheer captain
And I'm on the bleachers

Debatable. Imo these lyrics are more about the other girl being confident enough to wear short skirts + high heels (thus making her more noticeable to other guys) while Taylor isn't popular enough to attract attention. Still debatable.

I sneak in and see your friends
And her snotty little family all dressed in pastel
And she is yelling at a bridesmaid

Not slut-shaming, just making the other woman unpleasant.

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


And the saddest fear comes creeping in
That you never loved me or her, or anyone, or anything, yeah

Not slut-shaming. The other woman is barely mentioned, ffs.

Out of all these songs, "Teardrops on My Guitar," "Should've Said No," "The Other Side of the Door," and "I Knew You Were Trouble" literally say NOTHING about the other woman... apart from acknowledging her existence (and, in one case, hoping that she loves the guy well). "Invisible" states that the other woman does not know the guy as well as Taylor does (not the same thing as slut-shaming). "Speak Now" states that the other woman is a bridezilla (not the same thing as slut-shaming). "You Belong With Me" is potentially slut-shaming. "Better Than Revenge" is definitely slut shaming.

So, that's four songs that are negative towards other women ("Invisible," "Speak Now," "You Belong With Me," and "Better Than Revenge"), and one or two songs that are slut-shaming ("Better Than Revenge" and possibly "You Belong With Me"). Out of... what, eighty or so songs that she's written, according to my iTunes?

I mean. If we're actually taking the time to look at Taylor Swift's lyrics instead of blindly hating her.
crystalzelda 17th-Jan-2013 11:53 pm (UTC)
Yeah, maybe if you read the article you'd have seen that the lyrics posted weren't all example of slut shaming but Swift talking about her romantic rivals where in pretty much all of them she posits herself as the "good" girl versus the other, who makes trouble, screams at bridesmaids, wears short skirts, is known the the mattress, and generally really focusing on "the other woman" (but she certainly had NO issue being the other woman in YBWM).

The article also talks about her perplexing habit of having romantic rivals in music videos where none where present in the lyrics, so again having imagery and sound that pits girls versus girls. Like maybe if you weren't blindly stanning her you'd have read what was written above? You don't have to agree with it, but again, it never said these were all example of slut shaming, ooooop
anolinde 17th-Jan-2013 11:56 pm (UTC)
Yeah, maybe if you read the article you'd have seen that the lyrics posted weren't all example of slut shaming but Swift talking about her romantic rivals where in pretty much all of them she posits herself as the "good" girl versus the other, who makes trouble, screams at bridesmaids, wears short skirts, is known the the mattress, and generally really focusing on "the other woman" (but she certainly had NO issue being the other woman in YBWM).

Well, that's what I'm saying. Maybe if you read my comment you'd have seen that I counted four songs that were negative towards other women (Swift talking about her romantic rivals where in pretty much all of them she posits herself as the "good" girl versus the other, who makes trouble, screams at bridesmaids, wears short skirts, is known the the mattress, and generally really focusing on "the other woman"). Four songs is hardly a rampant problem imo.

Edited at 2013-01-17 11:56 pm (UTC)
anolinde 18th-Jan-2013 12:06 am (UTC)
Oh, and if we want to talk about the music videos, I checked out that section of the article and saw three videos where the other girl was completely not alluded to in the lyrics ("The Story of Us," "Picture to Burn," and "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together"). According to this source, she has nineteen music videos. "You Belong With Me" is also clearly slut-shaming (although it's interesting that Taylor plays both the "good girl" and the "bad girl"), so let's make that 4/19 videos that contain problematic inclusions or representations of other women.

"Teardrops on My Guitar"? Not negative. "White Horse"? Showing the existence of an "other woman" (when it's clear that Swift is blaming the guy) =/= negative. "I Knew You Were Trouble"? Again, not negative (because the guy is clearly the problem).

This article is reaching for the stars, imo. Like, maybe at first glance Swift seems to be all about the girl-bashing, but if you actually look at the examples they've given... I don't see how what she's doing is any worse than what countless other artists, male and female alike, have done.

Edited at 2013-01-18 12:07 am (UTC)
silencelied2me 18th-Jan-2013 12:05 am (UTC)
I've spent much time thinking about that short skirts/t-shirts line, first off, swift herself wears short skirts and high heels all the time, i don't think i've seen her in sneakers or t-shirts. And comparing Short skirts to t-shirts like that... isn't slut-shaming. You can't compare the two like that, you can be a "Slut" in t-shirt and sneakers as you can be in, heels and short skirts. She mentions after, she's cheer captain and i'm on the bleachers, which points to... she uppity and i'm not.
Everyone says she's making herself out to be an angel, but plays both girls and she's neither of those girls lmao
anyway sorry, IA haha
iamtheliquorr 18th-Jan-2013 05:27 am (UTC)
Thank you for this comment but lbr it's not going to make a difference to the pressed people in this post

tbh I always interpreted YBWM as just a rehash of every teen movie ever. Teen movie villains are usually male jocks or female alpha bitches and (at least going by TV Tropes), the cheerleader in YBWM is basically a ticked-off list of alpha-bitch traits
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