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Discourse Analysis - Bob Dylan's song

"The Times They Are A-changin' "
by

Chaxi de Leon

on 3 June 2013

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Transcript of Discourse Analysis - Bob Dylan's song

The Times They
are a-changin' by Bob Dylan The Times They are a-changin Introduction Context of "The times they are
a-changin' " 1. SOCIAL MEMBERS 2. INSTITUTIONS SOCIAL DIMENSION 3. IDEOLOGY by Bob Dylan This song was written by Bob Dylan in 1964

It is a song that trascends the political preoccupations of the time in which it was written.

It does not matter when you listen this song, you can always listen to it and you will always relate it to the events and situations in that moment. - Three Stages - Bob Dylan is encouraging to those
people who are the advocaters of the
Civil Rights movement, and trying
that the opponents change their mind because the societal shift is ocurring and there is not remedy to stop it. So, it will be better to resign.

Come gather round people
whatever you roam
and admit that the waters
around you have grown
and accept it that soon
you'll be drenched to the bone - 1960: Election of Kennedy as USA
president.
- 1963: Martin Luther King's speech:
"I have a Dream"
- 1963: Kennedy is assassinated.
- Lyndon Johnson became
president and pressed for
the Civil Rights
Legislation This is a song about the beginning of an important change in the history of the USA .... because The Times they are changin'... 1. Social Members

2. Institutions

3. Ideology We have several perspectives:
A. Critics and writers
B. Senators and congressmen
C. Mothers and fathers.
D. Sons and daughters.
The perspective A includes a general perspective because people in society should accept the change which is surrounding them. The perspective B describes the unjust actions taking place in the government: this could be referred to Brown vs. Topeka Board of Education. The perspective C and perspective D refer to the rock & roll rebellion in the 60s (hippies) taken by young people and their conservative parents who do not understand this new way of life. The times they are a-changing [...]
Come writers and critics
who prophesize with your pen
and keep your eyes wide
The chance won't come again
and (they) don't speak too soon
for the wheel's still in pin
and there's no telling who
that it's namin'
For the loser now
will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin' The Times they are a-changin' Come senators, congressmen
please heed the call
don't stand in the doorway
don't block up the hall
For he that gets hurt
will be he who has stalled
There's a battle outside
and it is ragin'
It'll soon shake your windows
and rattle your walls
For the times they are a-changin' Case Brown vs.Board of Education
(in Topeka) This was a case in 1954 in which the Court declared state laws establishing separate public schools for black and white students unconstitutional.

However, ratial segregation was ruled a violation of Equal Protection Clause of the 14th amendment of the USA constitution and it was approved. The times they are a-changin' Come mothers and fathers
throughout the land
and (you) don't criticize what you can't understand
your sons and your daughters
are beyond your command
You old road is rapidly agin'
Please (you) get out of the new one
if you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin' We have in this song two social groups that share their respectively ideologies:

In relation to the Civil Rights,

A. Advocaters open-minded people


B. Non-advocaters more convervative COHESION Semantic concept that refers to relations of meaning that exist within the text and that define it as a text COHESIVE DEVICES hold different parts of a text together LEXICAL
COHESION GRAMMATICAL
COHESION LEXICAL
COHESION REPETITIONS The title of the song is the sentence
that it is repeated through the song, together with conjunctions ("and"), articles, the negative particle ("don't) and the verb "come". SYNONYMS The word people take writers and critics, senators, congressment. "Waters"/ "chance" /"wheel"/ "call" are synonyms to "time" that pass "rapidly" (or "soon") in this song. The verb "admit" is related to "accept" and "prophesize" to "speak" or "tell". Moreover, the noun "command" is related to "order" and "line" to "road". At last, we can also see the word "fadin'" and "changin'" as synonyms. The Times They are a-changing Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone.
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'.

Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won't come again
And (you) don't speak too soon
For the wheel's still in spin
And there's no tellin' who
That it's namin'.
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin'. Come senators, congressmen
Please (you) heed the call
(you) Don't stand in the doorway
(you) Don't block up the hall
For he that gets hurt
Will be he who has stalled
There's a battle outside
And it is ragin'.
It'll soon shake your windows
And rattle your walls
For the times they are a-changin'.

Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And (you) don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin'.
Please (you) get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'. The line it is drawn
The curse it is cast
The slow one now
Will later be fast
As the present now
Will later be past
The order is
Rapidly fadin'.
And the first one now
Will later be last
For the times they are a-changin'. by Bob Dylan OPPOSITES This song has many opposites: the common people (fathers and mothers) and the people who has the power (critics or senators). Moreover, the time present vs. past (although this song is a call for the future). We can mention that the word "hall" (inside) contradicts the word "outside". And "slow" against "fast" and "old" against "new". Repetitions
Synonyms
Opposites
Superordinates /Hyponyms Lexical Cohesion SUPERORDINATES
& HYPONYMS Perphaps, we can highlight the word "water" as a superordinate because there are several words that are connected to the sea (such as, swim, sink, drench). Then, we have hyponyms such as, hand and eyes (whose superordinate is body). Superordinate for "people" group which include "congressman", "senator", "critics" etc. We can also find converses: mothers and fathers exist because there are sons and daughters. Converses GRAMMATICAL
COHESION REFERENCE WORDS The words "you" or "he" are typical reference words because both show more information about what it is referring to.

Throughout the song, we can see how "you" (2nd person singular) refers to those non-advocaters of the civil rights or convervatives (so, politicians). So, we can establish a contrast between "you" and "he" because this last could refer to someone who supports the Civil Rights Movement.

In the 3rd paragraph, "it" refers to "battle". Grammatical Cohesion Reference words
Substitutes
Ellipsis SUBSTITUTES The substitute "one" is the only one in this song. It refers to "road". " Your old road is
rapidly agin'
please get out of the new one [...]" ELLIPSIS In the Dylan's song, the ellipsis that we can find that the omitted word is "you". "[...] and (they) don't speak too soon" LAND Land refers to the "United States of America"

BUT...
... Who has the power/control?

Dylan makes power be equally because he first mentions "people" and then, the critics and writers who are the ones who have a little more power because of the mass media (specially, television). Types of Discourse EXPOSITORY Dylan explains through this song the situation living in USA between 1960 and 1964. POETRY (Literature)
DE LEÓN ELVIRA, Chaxiraxi

The Times They Are Changin'
(by Bob Dylan)

Lingüística Inglesa II
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