Oh Taylor Swift. The girl-next-door country singer, famed for writing about every encounter with the opposite sex she’s ever had and, more recently, her romance with One Direction’s Harry Styles, has brought out the big guns. And she’s shooting at Amy Poehler and Tina Fey.
Taylor claims that presenters and best friends Amy and Tina were sexist towards her whilst heading this year’s Golden Globe Awards when they mocked her love life. They joked that Taylor, who has been linked to high profile celebs including John Mayer, Jake Gyllenhaal, Taylor Lautner, Joe Jonas and more recently, Conor Kennedy, to “stay away” from Michael J Fox’s 23-year-old son.
In retaliation, Taylor condemned them to burn in hell for all eternity. Well, sort of. In an interview with Vanity Fair, the singer cited a quotation from presenter Katie Couric, that “there's a special place in hell for women who don't help other women.”
She went on to say, "For a female to write about her feelings, and then be portrayed as some clingy, insane, desperate girlfriend in need of making you marry her and have kids with her, I think that's taking something that potentially should be celebrated - a woman writing about her feelings in a confessional way - that's taking it and turning it and twisting it into something that is frankly a little sexist.”
Eeesh, this is awkward. The singer herself has long been accused of being rather stingy with the ‘women helping women’ stuff in a lot of her songs. But has she got a point this time? Here’s a few things to take into consideration before you make up your mind...
1. Amy Poehler’s reaction
Probably the absolute best thing about this whole debacle. “Aw, I feel bad if she was upset. I am a feminist and she is a young and talented girl. That being said, I do agree I am going to hell. But for other reasons. Mostly boring tax stuff.” THIS WOMAN IS A LEGEND.
2. Taylor does not identify herself as a feminist
During an interview with The Daily Beast, Taylor was asked whether she thought of herself as a feminist. She replied: "I don't really think about things as guys versus girls. I never have. I was raised by parents who brought me up to think if you work as hard as guys, you can go far in life."
3. She’s not guys versus girls. She’s girls versus girls
It has been pointed out, perhaps too many times, that although Taylor delivers ‘raw, honest music’, within it there is some significant - *sharpintakeofbreath* - slut-shaming. Oh dear. An example from Better Than Revenge: ‘She’s an actress/But she’s better known for the things that she does on a mattress.’ Ouch. Also, say Sherlocks, often the ‘other woman’ is presented as sexually available, dresses provocatively and - GASP - is not a virgin. “Because, obviously, a woman’s worth is based purely on the amount of sex she has had.” Did someone say irony?
4. Taylor claims she’s only dated two men since 2010
Unlike the Rihannas and Gagas, Taylor represents something more wholesome to teens, which many identify with. She backs this up with a claim that she’s only dated two men since 2010. So she’s not a man-eater, okay?
5. She is sort of right about how she’s defined
Taylor is THE girl next door and she writes emotive man-centric songs. As a result, she often comes with connotations of being a bunny boiler/desperate/[insert demeaning adjective here]. Are boys who do this labelled in such a derogatory manner? (We're looking at you, Harry Styles.)
6. Amy Poehler and Tina Fey did mock her
Taylor was the butt of a joke, which isn't nice by anyone's standard, but were they discriminatory of Taylor on the basis of her sex? Or how she defines herself through her own music? Was it any worse than the way Taylor generalises other women in her songs, for example? And should they, err, burn in the Hades’ underworld forever more for it?
We think not. But what say you? Watch the awks moment in the video below and wade into the debate…