There's A Harry Styles College Class & It's A Sign Of The Times
The professor of the course praises the artist for his “self-expression, and comfort with oneself.”
From the much-anticipated release of Harry’s House in May, to separate star turns in two upcoming movies this fall, it’s feeling like the Year of Harry Styles — but as it turns out, 2023 is already shaping up to be a pretty good time for fans of the “As It Was” singer, too. A select group of them at Texas State University, to be exact.
As CNN reports, Louie Dean Valencia, associate professor of digital history, will teach an honors course on Styles for the upcoming spring semester: “Harry Styles and the Cult of Celebrity: Identity, the Internet and European Pop Culture.”
“I can't tell you how many conversations I've had with students over the last two years that started with a shared love of Harry's music, but that quickly went into larger societal questions about gender, sexuality, race,” along with other topics, “because of Harry's art,” Valencia — a Styles fan! — told the outlet. He also praised Styles’ messages of “self-expression, and comfort with oneself ... along with treating people with kindness.”
On social media, Valencia shared more information about the class — “the world's first ever university course” on the singer’s work, he says. According to an info sheet, the course will focus on both Styles and European pop culture, in an effort “to understand the cultural and political development of the modern celebrity as related to questions of gender and sexuality, race, class, nation and globalism, media, fashion, fan culture, internet culture, and consumerism.”
The course content will include a look back at Styles’ history — yes, starting with his 1D days — Valencia explained in a TikTok. It will also feature the singer’s favorite books and possible poetic influences. It’s not a class about Styles’ personal life, Valencia clarified — much as fans might like a deep-dive into, say, his relationship with Taylor Swift or that mythical, reported snowmobile accident between the two — but rather, “the things that he puts out there, and, through that lens ... his music, his artistry, and also, hopefully, a little bit about ourselves.”
Sadly, Valencia said the class will be held at Texas State University — i.e., it doesn’t look like there is an online audit option for people who want to take the course (even if they’ve long since graduated, which, same). But if you’re lucky enough to attend the school, the class — held Mondays and Wednesdays at 11 a.m. — sounds like the perfect way to start your week.