In a Camille Paglia essay that reads like a parody of a Camille Paglia essay, the controversial feminist critic tears into the concept of “squads,” and not just because it’s the most annoyingly overused term of 2015. Paglia takes particular issue with Taylor Swift’s performative girl-power routine, which includes acting overexcited about her friends’ accomplishments and never missing a chance to Instagram a girl’s night in.
In fact, Paglia, gentle soul that she is, has coined a cute new nickname for Swift: Nazi Barbie.
In our wide-open modern era of independent careers, girl squads can help women advance if they avoid presenting a silly, regressive public image — as in the tittering, tongues-out mugging of Swift’s bear-hugging posse. Swift herself should retire that obnoxious Nazi Barbie routine of wheeling out friends and celebrities as performance props …
This anti-Swift mentality is not new to Paglia, who penned an essay back in 2012 also in the Hollywood Reporter arguing that Swift was “ruining women:”
In TV interviews, Swift affects a “golly, gee whiz” persona of cultivated blandness and self-deprecation, which is completely at odds with her shrewd glam dress sense. Indeed, without her mannequin posturing at industry events, it’s doubtful that Swift could have attained her high profile.
So, Camille, you’re saying you won’t cat-sit for Taylor, or …?