How much Taylor Swift can you bear? If you’re an Australian academic, your answer would probably be “too much is never enough” following news Thursday a world-first, three-day international symposium on “the impact of Taylor Swift” is scheduled for an Australian university next year.
While Swift has been the subject of university courses in the U.S. and elsewhere this is the first time a global symposium is being held to discuss her perceived influence.
Democrat-supporting Swift has long been seen as a darling of the left for her political views in general and fierce opposition to former President Donald Trump in particular. She has also worked closely with the Obama family on a host of their pet projects.
The BBC sets out every aspect of her life will be minutely examined in academia during the three-day event:
Organisers hope the conference will explore themes like the fandom phenomenon, Swift’s team’s “marketing masterclass”, and the singer-songwriter’s impact on discussions of gender, identity, race, and intersectionality. Critical analysis of her brand and influence is also welcome, they say.
The 33-year-old has become one of the highest-earning and most-decorated artists of all time, with organizers saying that is just one of the reasons so many academics see her as a vital subject for earnest inquiry.
“She’s quite a phenomenon,” Swiftposium organiser Jennifer Beckett from the University of Melbourne explained to the BBC, with the backing of seven universities across Australia and New Zealand all lining up to agree and add their resources to the sessions.
The green light flashes, the flags go up
Churning and burning, they yearn for the ballots https://t.co/ViKDR4szmE
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“Taylor Swift really does have a very concrete impact globally, across things that affect all of us,” Dr Beckett said, pointing to things like the role of women in industry, entertainment law, and even GDP.
“World leaders are begging for her to bring the Eras Tour to their country because of the economic benefits that it brings,” she added.
The Australian conference joins a series of Swift courses ranging from literature to social psychology at schools like Ghent University in Belgium, University of Texas at Austin, New York University, Stanford.
All of these universities have offered or are currently offering a course focused on Swift’s lyrics, discography, as well as her potential impact.