Social Messages In Bob Dylan's Highway 61 Revisited

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The songs in Bob Dylan’s album Highway 61 Revisited can arguably be said to be filled with messages that express Dylan’s anger towards the government and the wealthy class of America and conveys these messages by strategically placing the songs in a specific order. The positioning of the songs allows the audience see Dylan’s intended message as the album progresses as well as his approach to addressing the social conflicts occurring in the 1960’s. As each song unfolds it consistently carries over his central idea, however he shifts his attention towards the people he addresses with the purpose of trying to make the audience more aware of the government’s lack of intervention to help lower class citizens and later on targets the government …show more content…
This is evident through his use of a condescending tone with the purpose of criticizing the upper class for their ignorance towards others around them as well as mocking them after their financial downfalls. The next song on the album, “Tombstone Blues” presents a noticeable shift in attention and this time he indirectly mocks the those in positions of power for not correctly using their powers of authority to handle the social dilemmas during that time. He effectively does this by using many contradictions in his lyrics such as “A bald wig for Jack the Ripper who sits that head of the chamber of commerce” and “John the Baptist after torturing a thief.” The intent of this song is to try to make those in poverty more aware of the fact that the government, whose purpose is to protect their citizens and defend them of their rights, is failing to do their …show more content…
He could be criticizing how the government is once again using their resources towards something other than the problems being faced directly at home. Up next is the song “Ballad Of A Thin Man” where Dylan now directly confronts the government by calling them out for turning a blind eye towards the problems being caused in reaction to the Civil Rights Movement. The character Mr. Jones, who is also a metaphor for America, is watching the events unfold but in the end Dylan writes “You put your eyes in your pocket” to symbolize the ignorance of the

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