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Olivia Rodrigo’s ‘GUTS’ Is Screaming Girlhood

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at VCU chapter.

Ever since her 2021 debut album SOUR, Olivia Rodrigo fans have been anticipating another album drop from the queen herself, and GUTS did not disappoint. 

This album mainly focuses on past events and experiences in Olivia’s life. However, GUTS lets her fans see a side of her not seen in SOUR: her unhinged side. This album focuses on Olivia’s rage and anger toward situations that she had every right to be angry about.

Personally, I love this side of her coming out in the album, because it represents a realistic girlhood that almost every girl can relate to: an anger towards men. Highlighted in songs like “vampire” and “the grudge,” she really expresses her disdain towards the past men in her life, which I love. This makes it relatable for her audience, which is why many girls (including myself) love Olivia, because to put it simply, she is just too real.

When listening to this album, it really made me relate to her lyrics because they highlight experiences that only girls can relate to. It gives girls like me a safe space to feel the angry emotions we feel when getting over a past relationship or toxic crush. 

Also, this album is very heartfelt, which is especially highlighted in “making the bed” and “lacy.” Even though looking at past experiences can be anger-inducing, they also produce mixed feelings of sadness and regret. I’m glad she decided to put songs that are more calm in this album because it highlights all of the emotions a girl can go through: anger, sadness, happiness, moodiness, and more. It also shows self-improvement for Olivia herself.

GUTS also highlights the female experience, and what emotions girls go through on a daily basis. For example, the song “pretty isn’t pretty,” is essentially an emotional and heartfelt reflection on physical expectations for girls and self-positivity. Another good example of a song that highlights female beauty is the first song on her album, “all-american b*tch.” This track is about American culture and its views on unattainable ideals for women. Feelings relating to the overall female experience are also seen on almost every song on this album. 

GUTS ends with a song called “teenage dream,” which is about her complex journey of life under a constant spotlight and fame. I like how she ends her album with a song unique to her experience because it makes it more personal. She ends with reflecting on her own personal experiences to help others face their past experiences and come to terms with the emotions that come with thinking about them.

Olivia Rodrigo continues to be a huge inspiration for young girls learning about their emotions. She uses this album to highlight emotions that girls experience which are often shunned or disapproved of by society. She eliminates this stereotype that girls are always “clean” and “quiet” and expresses how girlhood can also be very messy, disoriented, and loud. Olivia speaks out for girls all over the world to show how we aren’t just going to be quiet about hurtful things, but we are going to have the “GUTS” to be loud and very verbal about negative traumatic experiences in our life that make us girls, well, girls! 

Amanda Vallieres is a class of 2027 VCU student. She is currently majoring in Psychology. Her interests are writing, fashion, reading, and painting. Also, her favorite subject to write about for hercampus is pop culture. She enjoys reading about any subject, but her favorite one to read about is science fiction. At VCU, she’s also apart of other clubs such as FACT (Filipino Americans Coming Together), VSA (Vietnamese Student Association), KAPWA, and Vintage Threads.