This summer, global pop sensation Taylor Swift embarked on her highly anticipated Eras Tour, which is set to become the highest-grossing tour of all time as it progresses into its second and third legs next year. Simultaneously, audiences, primarily consisting of women, teenage girls, and even some men, flocked to cinemas to watch the Barbie movie, which has emerged as the biggest film of the year, ranking among the biggest of all time. These cultural phenomena signal a significant shift in the entertainment landscape and hold a mirror to the market's yearning for something that both Taylor Swift and Barbie, despite their imperfections, undeniably provide.\r\n\r\nREAD: \u00a0Rapper Sexyy Red\u2019s Explicit Instagram Video Shocks the Internet!\u201d\r\nTaylor Swift\r\nThe Barbie movie delves into the complexities of womanhood, the pervasive desire of some men to exert power over women, and the challenges and demands of female adolescence. Taylor Swift, on the other hand, croons about seeking retribution against those who betrayed her, profited from her career, and hindered her progress. When we combine these narratives, it might be tempting to rush to the conclusion that the market craves more in-depth commentary on the intricacies of 21st-century feminism, a heightened focus on the struggles women face, and a reinforcement of gender battles.\r\n\r\nHowever, such a conclusion would be missing the mark. What Barbie and Taylor Swift offer is a simpler message: the revival of girl power. At Taylor Swift concerts, teenagers swap friendship bracelets, move in large groups, and coordinate their outfits meticulously. They watch Swift grace the stage in glittering bodysuits and sparkly boots, with no attempt at androgyny in sight. In the world of Barbie, the array of dolls forms an extensive girl gang, complete with pink plastic houses and flawlessly styled hair. Their dance sequences evoke memories of the Spice Girls, representing poptimism in its purest form.\r\n\r\nGirliness has often been unfairly denigrated, stereotyped as frivolous and shallow, traits associated only with teenage girls. This unfair characterization is particularly pronounced when it concerns teenage girls. However, this phenomenon extends beyond them. The celebration of uncomplicated and straightforward femininity stands as a reaction to the prevailing cultural norms of the 2010s. During this period, feminism transformed into something almost unrecognizable, erasing any semblance of female solidarity and rendering it obsolete and unfashionable overnight.\r\n\r\nConsider former Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg's book, "Lean In," which served as a guide for women in the workplace, urging them to assertively advocate for themselves. However, it received delayed criticism, with some arguing that Sandberg's book fell short in addressing the challenges faced by working-class women.\r\n\r\nIn the meantime, Taylor Swift faced open mockery for her extensive circle of attractive female friends. The criticism revolved around the idea that it was exclusionary to those who didn't have such extensive, beautiful female friendships. A similar situation occurred when the film "Suffragette" aired in 2015, drawing backlash for its perceived lack of racial diversity. These incidents gave rise to factionalism, with women turning against each other, all ostensibly in the name of feminism.\r\n\r\nTaylor Swift, a prominent figure often used to gauge our perceptions of women on a broader scale, made headlines in 2016 due to a highly publicized feud with rapper Kanye West. The dispute stemmed from West's derogatory reference to Swift as a "btch" in his song "Famous." In response to this controversy, Buzzfeed published an essay titled "How Taylor Swift played the victim for a decade and made her entire career," which gained significant viral attention.\r\n\r\nThe essay argued that Taylor Swift employed the trappings of white feminine fragility and leveraged sexual innocence for the sake of record sales. This narrative was considered a fair critique of Swift's behavior, all because she didn't want to be casually dismissed as a "btch." The alignment of this essay with a particular wave of feminism remains unclear, but it is reassuring to see it receding into the past.\r\n\r\nMoreover, it's crucial to remember that this was the same cultural milieu that introduced and propagated the term "Karen." Almost overnight, this once-innocuous name became a means for the misogynistic dismissal of middle-aged white women. It was used to publicly denounce typical female behavior, offering a convenient way for some individuals to express their sexism under the guise of slang. What's noteworthy is that women were also willing to employ this term, and it was tolerated because the targets were not just middle-aged women but those from middle-class backgrounds.\r\n\r\nIn such a climate, it would have been improbable for figures like Swift or Barbie to attain such prominence in the zeitgeist. However, it is now abundantly clear that this environment did not fulfill women's desires. Why else would there be such a strong market for the straightforward and poptimist universe embodied by Barbie and Swift? It's a relief to acknowledge that girliness was never a negative trait, and modern feminism was never meant to devolve into internal conflict and discord.