Taylor Swift would no longer like to be excluded from the narrative. The old Taylor is dead, and buried with her is her Sisyphean quest to defend herself and maintain her image. Now, on her new album “Reputation,” the new Taylor is more than eager to embrace controversy.

Swift made this intention clear on Aug. 21, when she wiped all of her social media accounts and posted videos of snakes in their place. She followed with a similarly snake-filled lyric video of her album’s lead single “Look What You Made Me Do,” a queen-of-snakes persona in the single’s eventual music video and even snake-themed jewelry on her merchandise store.

All this was an obvious reference to her longtime feud with Kanye West and Kim Kardashian, which reignited last year when West bragged that he “made that b----- [Swift] famous” in his song “Famous.” After Swift denounced the line, Kardashian shared parts of a recorded phone call that appeared to show Swift consenting to the lyrics and tweeted to call her a “snake.”

Now, unrestrained and unapologetic, Swift’s new album carries a level of vengeance that she has not dared to show in the past. In “Look What You Made Me Do,” which her fans suspect to be about Katy Perry — another celebrity rival — and the “Kimye” couple, she talks about a hitman-like “list of names” before threatening that “you’ll all get yours.” And in “I Did Something Bad,” Swift seems to call West a “narcissist” and admits to “feeling so good” when plotting revenge against him.

Despite their seeming pettiness, however, the diss tracks reveal just as much introspection as aggression. Swift seems to have decided that her naiveté was to blame for the string of high-profile scandals and breakups, and, with the album as her mouthpiece, she wants the world to know: She has outgrown her innocence.

Swift has given up trying to avoid controversy; now she invites it, daring her enemies to burn her like a witch in “I Did Something Bad.” She has ditched her signature kill-’em-with-kindness attitude, opting for a caustic mockery of forgiveness in “This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things” — an unrecognizable change from the Taylor Swift of “Speak Now,” who sang wistful ballads of apologies and reconciliation.

And Swift, at 27 years old, has given up the last traces of her image as America’s Sweetheart. Though she has alluded to sex in the past, and though the boundaries of love and lust have always been blurry in pop music, four out of the 15 songs on “Reputation” explicitly mention sex with her boyfriend, the British actor Joe Alwyn.

Some are so explicit that, according to fans who attended the exclusive “secret sessions” listening parties, Swift’s parents had to cover their ears and leave the room when the sultry “Dress” came on, their daughter’s voice crooning that she “only bought this dress so [Alwyn] could take it off.”

Swift also really, really wants the world to know that she drinks alcohol. This is the first time in her career that she has included drinking in her lyrics, and nine out of 15 songs on “Reputation” mention booze in some way — from sipping plastic-cup beer in “King of My Heart” to a drunken bathtub make-out in “Dress.”

Skeptics will say these changes are a cheap ploy to rebrand herself with an edgy, adult persona. But all these shifts are actually part of a larger, revealing theme throughout the album. And the theme is that Taylor Swift, international pop superstar, has given up.

She has given up salvaging her reputation, which plunges with every new breakup, scandal and falling-out. She has given up on restoring her image, which is forever established by critics as a calculating and self-victimizing man-eater. She has given up denying rumors, avoiding controversies and reshaping narratives. And she has given up shaking it off and keeping a stiff upper lip to her critics, as Alwyn would advise.

As she writes in her poem “Why She Disappeared,” included in one of the promotional magazines for the album, Swift has realized that, in the eyes of the public, whatever she says is not right, and whatever she does is not enough.

So she retreated. She isolated herself from the public so much that there were rumors she was being carried out of her apartment in a giant suitcase.

But Swift’s music in “Reputation” is more revealing than ever. While her previous songs mostly dealt with standard, storybook emotions like love, attraction, jealousy and heartbreak, her new album describes more complex mental states that are more realistic and relatable.

In “Delicate,” the story is not the carefree rush of “Holy Ground” or the love-at-first-sight attraction of “Speak Now.” Instead, Swift sings about fear and insecurity as she has the usual doubts at the beginning of a relationship: Am I moving too fast? Did I say too much? Does he or she really like me?

And in the controversial “Look What You Made Me Do,” against the musically rich backdrop of drums and strings, her voice is dead. Her tone turns from an enjoyable, shade-throwing vengeance into jaded apathy as she chants the title over and over. After an 11-year catalog of autobiographical songs criticized as over-emotional, here Swift showcases an emotional emptiness.