Who is the artist? Bob Dylan
What is the name of the song? "Only a Pawn in their Game"
When was it released? 1964
What other famous songs has he preformed? "Like a Rolling Stone" "Subterranean Homesick Blues" "The Times They Are a-Changin"
The deputy sheriffs, the soldiers, the governors get paid- the people that have power in the government get paid
And the marshals and cops get the same- law enforcement gets paid decent
But the poor white man's used in the hands of them all like a tool- the poor whites don't get paid, they get used
He's taught in his school- the white man gets an education
From the start by the rule- from the beginning of his life
That the laws are with him- he is taught that he's the best and that the government in on his side
To protect his white skin- thinks that the government is protecting him
To keep up his hate- the white man is taught to blame the black man
So he never thinks straight- with his hatred towards blacks they can not see how messed up society really is
'Bout the shape that he's in- the white man is too busy blaming the blacks that he doesn't see what is happening to him
But it ain't him to blame- but the black man isn't to blame nor is the white man
He's only a pawn in their game- the black man can't do anything about his situation, the government holds all the cards.
How do the lyrics relate to or reflect the time period?- Bob Dylan is illiterates the time period where blacks were stuck and being mistreated. The blacks represent the pawn, because they have no power and are under control.
What is taking place in history when the song was recorded or popular? The song was written right around the time of the assassination of civil rights activist, Medgar Evers. The civil rights movement was still going on
What was the overall inspiration and message of the lyrics of the song? The inspiration of this song came from the unfair treatment of the blacks. Bob Dylan portrays a message to not blame every white man for what has happened. There are many good whites out there, but others are being controlled by the wealthy.
Analysis- Bob Dylan wrote this song in a period of time where blacks were suffering. The songs purpose was to raise awareness of the civil rights movement and motivate people to join. Dylan wasn't blaming the all whites for the mistreatment, but he was putting the blame on the wealthy whites.