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The Year in Music 2021: Britney Spears breaks free

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2021 was a big year for Britney Spears. She finally won her freedom from the 13-year conservatorship that had controlled nearly every aspect of her life. Here’s how Britney’s year unfolded:

— The fight for Britney’s freedom really ramped up in February, following the release of the New York Times’ unauthorized documentary, Framing Britney Spears, which shined a light on how the singer was unfairly treated by the media, as well as by her own family. Britney wasn’t exactly a fan of the doc, but it prompted an outpouring of support and even a long overdue apology from her ex, Justin Timberlake.

— In June, Britney spoke out for the first time publicly about her conservatorship, delivering explosive comments during a court hearing in which she asked for her father, Jamie Spears, to be removed as her conservator. She detailed a long list of grievances against her family, as well as some disturbing claims about the abuse she said she’d endured, telling the judge she believes everyone involved in the conservatorship “should be in jail.”

— Jamie Spears was suspended as the conservator of Britney’s estate in September, shortly before the New York Times dropped a follow-up documentary, Controlling Britney Spears, which included allegations that Jamie bugged Britney’s room and would secretly monitor her emails, phone calls and private conversations.

— Also in September, Britney got engaged to longtime boyfriend Sam Asghari.

— The conservatorship itself was finally terminated in November, “in its entirety, effective immediately.” Judge Brenda Penny delivered the ruling in an LA courtroom as #FreeBritney supporters cheered outside.

— After the court decision, Britney delivered a message to fans, telling them, “I honestly think you guys saved my life in a way. One hundred percent.” She’s since become more outspoken on social media, giving fans glimpses of her truth and hinting she may one day reveal the full story of what she went through.

— On December 2, Britney celebrated her 40th birthday as a free woman.


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