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Taylor Swift course to be offered by Harvard University

Born on December 13, 1989, in Reading, Pennsylvania, Taylor Swift gained widespread fame with her country music debut and later transitioned to pop music (PA Wire)
Born on December 13, 1989, in Reading, Pennsylvania, Taylor Swift gained widespread fame with her country music debut and later transitioned to pop music (PA Wire)

Taylor Swift has dominated everything from the music charts to media headlines — and soon she is set to shape the US education system.

The renowned singer-songwriter is to be the subject of a course at one of America's most esteemed universities, Harvard.

Harvard's English professor Stephanie L. Burt — a self-confessed Swiftie — will teach the course named "Taylor Swift and Her World" next semester. She has been a fan of the performer since hearing her music nearly 15 years ago and now wants to share her passion with her students.

A Harvard spokesman said: "In this class, students will earn college credit for their deep dives into Swift’s lyrics, music, and influence, dissecting her catalogue and reading a host of authors Burt finds relevant to understanding Swift’s artistry."

Prof Burt added: "We are lucky enough to be living in a time when one of our major artists is also one of the most famous people on the planet. Why would you not have a course on that?

“I try to teach only the courses that I think our students can really use — either because students want them or because our curriculum needs them. The course seeks to add context and richness to the celebrity of Swift — a task especially prescient for Harvard Swifties who may have had little formal introduction to literary and aesthetic analysis."

She said she found it "fascinating" how Swift "engages with the literary canon, sometimes directly naming influences and muses in her music".

"For example, in her song The Lakes she sings the line “tell me what are my Wordsworth” in reference to the English Romantic poet William Wordsworth."

This is not the first time that Swift has made it into academia.

Queen Mary University of London became one of the UK’s first universities to offer a course inspired by Swift two months ago.

Led by Dr Clio Doyle, students attending the module were told to be ready to delve into Swift’s work and ask valuable questions. These included whether Swift's lyrics should be studied the same way we study William Shakespeare or Charles Dickens.

The course description stated: “This module suggests that the lyrics of Taylor Swift can and should be read as literature. In doing so, we will pay close attention to formal elements such as rhyme and word choice.

"We will also analyse her songs with the help of key texts in critical theory and discuss the political, national, and historical contexts of her work.”

Born on December 13, 1989, in Reading, Pennsylvania, Swift gained widespread fame with her country music debut and later transitioned to pop music.

Swift's career began in the mid-2000s with the release of her self-titled debut album in 2006. She quickly rose to prominence with chart-topping singles and albums, earning numerous awards for her songwriting and performances. Some of her most popular albums include Fearless, Speak Now, Red, 1989, Reputation, and Lover.

Swift is known for her autobiographical songwriting, often drawing on personal experiences and relationships. Her music spans various genres, from country to pop, and she has received critical acclaim for her ability to connect with a diverse audience.

In addition to her musical achievements, Swift is also recognised for her advocacy on various social and political issues.