May 24, 2024

Is Taylor Swift Fatphobic For Her Anti-Hero Music Video?

Taylor Swift has received rave reviews for her new album Midnights, but amongst the outpouring of praise, a slew of angry debate has been bubbling on social media.

The criticism has been levelled at Taylor’s music video for Anti-Hero, released last week, which she described on Twitter as ‘watching my nightmare scenarios and intrusive thoughts play out in real time’. We see Taylor take shots with her ‘evil’ drunk self, taking notes from a blackboard which reads ‘everyone will betray you’, and stepping onto a pair of scales which then simply display the word ‘fat’.

As soon as the video dropped, people started criticising Taylor’s use of the word ‘fat’, calling it fatphobic, insensitive and harmful. “Terrible. Just awful. Fatphobia at its finest. And from a skinny, rich, white, straight cis woman. Your choice to include this will cause intense harm to many people,” read one critique on Twitter.

“It is possible to appreciate Taylor Swift and midnight as an artist AND call her out on her blatant fatphobia. Taylor Swift should have done better because even if it is relatable and an “intrusive thought” it is damaging and fatphobic. Listen to fat ppl when they tell you it is,” read another.

Shira Rosenbluth, an eating disorder therapist in New York, also condemned the video. “Taylor Swift’s music video, where she looks down at the scale where it says “fat,” is a sh*tty way to describe her body image struggles,» she wrote. «Fat people don’t need to have it reiterated yet again that it’s everyone’s worst nightmare to look like us. ”

She continued. “Having an eating disorder doesn’t excuse fatphobia. It’s not hard to say, “I’m struggling with my body image today” instead of I’m a fat, disgusting pig. ”

Taylor has previously been open about her struggles with disordered eating, both in her 2020 documentary Miss Americana – in which she describes seeing “a picture of me where I feel like I looked like my tummy was too big, or… someone said that I looked pregnant … and that’ll just trigger me to just starve a little bit… just stop eating” – and press interviews, including with Variety, also in 2020.

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