As she should! Taylor Swift is so important you can study her at these six universities
Enrolling for Swift studies at Queen Mary NOW
The whole world is obsessed with Taylor Swift. We pore over every morsel of food that goes into her mouth and freak out every single time she makes eye contact with a new man. People love her so much that she’s started to become a bit of a phenomena at universities, inspiring the basis of a large number of uni courses and modules.
And honestly, listening to her lyrics it’s what she deserves. Her stuff is literally poetry. That woman is a genius. When she released folklore in 2020 you could practically feel every single English lecturer in the country vibrating with excitement.
With a new Taylor Swift summer school course being announced at Russell Group Queen Mary University of London this week, Taylor is truly in her academic era.
So here is each and every time Taylor Swift has been studied as part of a uni course:
The new Taylor Swift course at Queen Mary University of London
Named Taylor Swift and Literature, Queen Mary University of London has set up a summer school course purely dedicated to studying T Swizzle and her lyrics. The syllabus reads: “This module suggests that the lyrics of Taylor Swift can and should be read as literature.” It explores Taylor’s lyrics as works of literature and looks at all the literary references in her songs.
If you fancy becoming an academic Swiftie, the summer school course is 150 hours long over two weeks in July 2024. But studying Taylor really doesn’t come cheap with the course costing £2,100. Just gonna sell my kidney to go to this don’t mind me!
Every year we get students rogue and fun dissertations that really put your snooze-fest on The Tudors to shame, soz. But the blueprint for all the cool and original disses has been students writing their dissertations on Taylor Swift.
At Bristol in 2021, Sociology and Philosophy student Evie Chiles wrote her diss on Taylor Swift. It was titled: “Look What You Made Her do: Swift Negotiations with an Inherently Sexist Music Industry, A Case Study of Taylor Swift”. The 10k dissertation explores the misogyny Swift has faced throughout her career and I’m desperate to read it.
Another student at York also did her master’s diss on Taylor. Liv Shaw, an English masters students’ dissertation was called “‘Passed down like folk songs’: An Analysis of Story and Character in Taylor Swift’s Folklore and Evermore”. The 15,000-word thesis explores the stories and characters on the albums with a chapter on Taylor Swift herself.
‘Swiftposium’ Taylor Swift conference
The University of Melbourne in Australia is holding an academic conference purely based around Taylor Swift in February next year. The three-day “Swiftposium” runs from the 11th to 13th February which coincides with the Aussie leg of the Eras tour, in case you fancy making a Taylor Swift pilgrimage.
The conference is organised by academics from seven Australian and New Zealand universities. It is advertised as an “academic conference for scholars to engage in critical dialogue about Swift’s popularity and its profound implications for a range of issues including gender, fandom, popular culture, literature, the economy, the music industry, and more”.
It is held online as well as in person and organisers have invited Taylor herself to make a virtual appearance. Brb gonna go and write a book on Taylor so she’ll notice me.
Taylor Social Psychology module in Arizona
So not only does she make English degrees, she’s also being studied in psychology. Crazy stuff. At Arizona State University in the US, students can take a course called “Psychology of Taylor Swift – Advanced Topic of Social Psychology”.
Alexandra Wormley, the PhD student teaching the module said: “The course is basically using Taylor Swift as a semester-long example of different phenomena — gossip, relationships, revenge,” said Wormley, emphasising that “the class is not a seminar on how much we like or dislike her — we want to be able to learn about psychology.”
Taylor module at The University of Ghent in Belgium
The University of Ghent in Belgium has also introduced an English module on Taylor. The module is called Literature (Taylor’s Version) and will be added to the master’s degree in language and literature this term.
The lecturer running the module, Elly McCausland, said: “I’ve never had so many emails from excited students asking if they can take the course. And actually non-students as well, people who are not part of the university and who want to participate in some way.” The course explores the parallels between Taylor’s songs and classic texts.
Stanford University ‘All Too Well 10 Week Version’ course
Now this is something I can get behind. A whole module literally dedicated to the 10 minute version of All Too Well. Stanford University was just named the second best university in the world and honestly I think it’s because of this module.
The module is part of Stanford’s Introductory Studies, and will include an “in depth analysis” of the whole song. It is taught by Stanford alumna Nona Hungate. With how high this song was on my Spotify wrapped this year I think I’d smash this course.
New York’s Clive Davis Institute module
The Clive Davis Institute in New York is another uni offering a Taylor Swift module. The course initially ran earlier this year and explored “Swift’s evolution as a creative music entrepreneur, the legacy of pop and country songwriters, discourses of youth and girlhood, and the politics of race in contemporary popular music.”
The course also looked at copyright and ownership, fandoms and the politics of teen girlhood in pop music. It had a huge waiting list of students and Taylor was invited to speak in a class but never accepted. Wounded.
How long do we think before someone sets up an actual Taylor Swift university?
Featured image before edits via YouTube.