It feels like Taylor Swift and Kim Kardashian/Kanye West have been in a feud since the dawn of time, but since all parties like to reserve their commentary on the matter for big moments, there’s apparently still a lot to be said. It’s Taylor’s turn to tell a fraction of her side, and she did so in her profile for the September issue of Vogue.
Swifty talked about how lonely it was immediately after Kim K dropped those recordings of her allegedly okay-ing Kanye’s “Famous” lyrics about her in 2016. That was when the entire internet seemed to turn anti-Swift with a string of cleverly-placed snake emojis.
“A mass public shaming, with millions of people saying you are quote-unquote canceled, is a very isolating experience,” Taylor told the mag. “I don’t think there are that many people who can actually understand what it’s like to have millions of people hate you very loudly… When you say someone is canceled, it’s not a TV show. It’s a human being. You’re sending mass amounts of messaging to this person to either shut up, disappear, or it could also be perceived as, Kill yourself.”
— Vogue Magazine (@voguemagazine) August 8, 2019
Swift explained that rather than let the haters get her down, as the kids say, she would take the opportunity to reinvent herself and reclaim the image that had been lampooned by the snake-commenters.
“I realized I needed to restructure my life because it felt completely out of control,” she said. “I knew immediately I needed to make music about it because I knew it was the only way I could survive it. It was the only way I could preserve my mental health and also tell the story of what it’s like to go through something so humiliating.”
The Vogue article sites music critic Brian Mansfield’s take that Swift used her Reputation album to own the snake-like character that the internet and some of the media had painted her as. She confirms as much when asked about the 2016 election—something she was criticized at the time for not getting involved in.
“I just knew I wasn’t going to help. Also, you know, the summer before that election, all people were saying was She’s calculated. She’s manipulative. She’s not what she seems. She’s a snake. She’s a liar,” she said. “These are the same exact insults people were hurling at Hillary. Would I be an endorsement or would I be a liability? Look, snakes of a feather flock together. Look, the two lying women. The two nasty women. Literally millions of people were telling me to disappear. So I disappeared. In many senses.”
ICYMI: this whole big bad feud started waaay back in 2009 when Kanye stormed the stage after Taylor’s Best Female Video VMA win to say Beyoncé should have won. The feud was revived years later in 2016 when Kanye dissed Taylor on his song “Famous” where he claimed, “I made that b—h famous.” Later, Kim released recordings of Taylor supposedly approving the lyrics, which Taylor claimed afterwards “never happened.” Cue the thousands, millions, gazillions of snake emojis.
Taylor wrote about the time after the video drop in her essay for Elle UK this past March, indirectly (but totally directly) calling Kim Kardashian a bully and saying the incident “led me to feeling lower than I’ve ever felt in my life.” She concluded that, “It would be nice if we could get an apology from people who bully us, but maybe all I’ll ever get is the satisfaction of knowing I could survive it, and thrive in spite of it.”
Thrive indeed. Taylor’s traded in her goth snake phase for rainbows and butterflies (which we’re honestly pumped about) and is about to bestow another album on the world in a couple weeks. We’d say she’s doing just fine.
On a much lighter note, as part of her Vogue cover star duties, Tay appeared in the latest edition of “Ask Anna”—the online Vogue video series where fashion peasants ask Anna Wintour questions about her fabulous life and how to not dress like such peasants. Without ever actually being in the same room as Miss Wintour, Taylor asked all our most pressing questions like “What is the most insulting adjective you could use to describe someone?” and “How did you feel when I copied your hairstyle at the 2016 Grammys?”
Please enjoy this totally snake-free palette cleanser in the form of Anna Wintour ONCE AGAIN expressing her hatred of leggings.