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Taylor Swift: Eras, Narrative, Digital Media and Music

Posted: February 26th, 2021 | Filed under: Calls for Papers | No Comments »

Deadline for proposals (250 words): 11:59pm EST  March 31, 2021
Selection notification by April 15, 2021
Proposed date: July 17, 2021

On February 11, 2021, pop star Taylor Swift announced the anticipated re-release of her 2008 album Fearless, a project launched following the contentious and public battle between Swift and her former label Big Machine Records. While specific and noteworthy in its particulars, this release also comprises one in a long series of re-visiting and re-versioning of the star’s life and output by Swift, the media, her fans, and her detractors. Listening to Swift’s releases as artifacts of the current digital age, this study day seeks to position Swift as a prism through which to examine intersecting issues in contemporary music industries and media ecosystems, from copyright and pandemic creation, to multimedia star texts and digital fan practices.

Topics under consideration might include (but are not limited to):

  • Copyright, intellectual property, and re-release
  • Pandemic production and release
  • Genre negotiation: country, pop, folk, indie
  • Identity: girlhood, whiteness
  • Swiftian songwriting, narrative, autobiography
  • Digital fandom discourse and practices
  • Engagements between digital and material fandom
  • Collaboration: producers, co-writing, and featured vocals

Please send 250-word abstracts and a short 100-word bio to [email protected] by 31 March 2021 (11:59pm EST).

Organizers: Christa Anne Bentley (Oklahoma City University), Kate Galloway (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute), and Paula Harper (Washington University in St. Louis).

This study day will take place virtually on 17 July 2021, from 9:00am to 7:00pm Eastern Standard time. Presenters will be notified of their acceptance by 15 April 2021. Panel scheduling for speakers will strive to accommodate time zone differences and child- and dependent-care needs.

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