On June 11, Clara Beyer, a rising senior at Brown University, tweeted: “Idea for a single purpose twitter: feminist Taylor Swift.”
Beyer says she has long been a fan of Swift's music, but said "a lot of the songs are either 'I used to have a boy and I was happy, and now I don’t and now I’m sad' or 'if I had this boy, I would be happy.'"
Beyer decided to tweet mash-ups of Swift lyrics with feminist theory.
She wrote a bio that played off Taylor Swift’s official Twitter page, and said, “Happy. Free. Confused. Oppressed by the patriarchy. At the same time.” She then edited a picture of the country pop superstar's face onto the iconic Rosie the Riveter poster.
“She wears short skirts / I wear T-shirts / Neither of us is asking for it” was the first tweet sent out from the @feministtswift account the afternoon of June 12, from the song "You Belong With Me," and now the feed has gone from about 20 followers to more than 74,000.
I'll be strong, I'll be wrong / Oh but life goes on / Oh I'm just a girl / Making mistakes that shouldn't indicate my gender's incompetence— FeministTaylorSwift (@feministtswift) June 17, 2013
Now you mail back your things / And I walk home alone / But I still feel unsafe walking by myself after dark / What's that about?— FeministTaylorSwift (@feministtswift) June 17, 2013
Swift, 23, has become a more polarizing figure as she grows out of teen star and into adult superstar, distancing herself from all things feminist. When asked about a jab that Amy Poehler and Tina Fey made at her expense while hosting the Golden Globes, Swift quoted Madeleine Albright by way of Katie Couric, saying “There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.”