NYU Announces College Course Focused on Lana Del Rey's Connection to Feminism and Social Justice

·3 min read
Lana Del Rey
Lana Del Rey

Rebecca Sapp/Getty Lana Del Rey

Following up on its Taylor Swift-themed course last semester, New York University's Clive Davis Institute is introducing a course centered around Lana Del Rey's music for the fall.

On Tuesday, NYU announced via Variety that "Topics in Recorded Music: Lana Del Rey," which will be taught by journalist and author Kathy Iandoli, will run as a two-credit course from Oct. 20 to Dec. 8.

The course is set to feature a curriculum focused on "Del Rey's contributions to 21st Century pop stardom, her relationship to feminism, her musical influences and artists she has influenced, and her connection to social justice movements such as #BlackLivesMatter, #MeToo and #TimesUp," according to Variety, which cited an NYU representative.

"Over the course of eight critically-acclaimed albums, the six-time Grammy nominated artist has introduced a sad core, melancholic, and baroque version of dream pop that in turn helped shift and reinvent the sound (and mood) of mainstream music beyond the 2010s," read a description about the "Born to Die" artist-focused class, per the outlet.

"Through her arresting visuals and her thematic attention to mental health and tales of toxic, damaged love, Del Rey provided a new platform for artists of all genders to create 'anti-pop' works of substance that could live in a mainstream once categorized as bubblegum," continued the description.

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In a statement obtained by PEOPLE, the Davis Institute's chair, Jason Davis, said Lana Del Rey's career "refracts so many changes in contemporary culture, especially as the role of contemporary women in pop music keeps shifting."

"Studying Lana Del Rey means thinking more critically the growing popularity of so-called anti-pop," continued his statement. "It means finding ways to consider the increased interest in mental health and issues of psychological damage, and to evaluate changes in they 21st way we think about identity, especially in terms of race, gender, nation and class."

"Lana is especially relevant, and controversial, when it comes to changing ideas about intersectional feminism over the past decade," said King.

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Iandoli called 37-year-old Del Rey (whose real name is Elizabeth Grant) "a complicated pop star who resonates so much with her fans, not because of how she makes them feel about her, but rather how she makes them feel about themselves," in a statement about the course, per Variety.

"She has changed the parameters of baroque pop and now more specifically 'sad girl pop' through her music, by expanding the subject matter which at times is controversial and challenging," Iandoli's statement continued. "There are so many pieces in this mosaic that we have now come to know as Lana Del Rey, and this course examines every dimension of it."

RELATED: New York University Launches New Course About Taylor Swift for the 2022 Spring Semester

In February, Variety reported that the Clive Davis Institute ran a Taylor Swift-themed course during NYU's spring semester taught by Rolling Stone writer Brittany Spanos.

The course reportedly focused on "music and public discourse as it relates to her own growth as an artist and a celebrity," including topics such as Swift's entrepreneurial skillset, creativity and durability, in addition to the culture and politics surrounding Swift and "teen girlhood" within the music industry.