BANG Showbiz English
A songwriting course based on the work of Taylor Swift is to be offered at the University of Texas at Austin.
The 32-year-old pop star is thought to have solely written more than 50 songs since her childhood and now The Taylor Swift Songbook will be “read” alongside classics such as Geoffrey Chaucer, William Shakespeare, and Samuel Taylor Coleridge at the North American university and will strive to “introduce literary critical reading and research methods-basic skills for work in English literature and other humanities disciplines” to students.
A description on the university’s website reads: “Focusing on Swift’s music and the cultural contexts in which it and her career are situated, we’ll consider frameworks for understanding her work, such as poetic form, style, and history among various matters and theoretical issues important to contextualisation as we practice close and in-depth reading, evaluating secondary sources, and building strong arguments.”
Some preliminary texts are said to include chart-topping albums ‘Red (Taylor’s Version)’ as well as ‘Lover’, ‘Folklore’ and the GRAMMY Award-nominated record ‘Evermore.’
News of the songwriting course comes just months after the ‘Shake It Off’ hitmaker received an honorary doctorate from New York University after being recongised by the college as “one of the most prolific and celebrated artists of her generation.”
Meanwhile, a separate university in Texas announced back in July that a course titled ‘Harry Styles and the Cult of Celebrity: Identity, the Internet, and European Pop Culture’, will be on offer from 2023 and based around Taylor’s fellow pop superstar.
At the time, Dr. Louie Dean Valencia of Texas State University shared: “This course focuses on British musician Harry Styles and popular European culture to understand the cultural and political development of the modern celebrity as related to questions of gender and sexuality, race, class, nation and globalism, media, fashion, fan culture, internet culture, and consumerism.”