Analysis of "My Back Pages" by Bob Dylan

Essay by yelli123High School, 10th gradeA+, April 2004

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Analysis of "My Back Pages"

"My Back Pages"

Bob Dylan

My guard stood hard

When abstract threats

Too noble to neglect

Deceived me into thinking

I had something to protect

Good and bad I define these terms

Quite clear, no doubt somehow

Ah, but I was so much older then

I'm younger than that now.

"My Back pages" by Bob Dylan can be interpreted in any number of ways by any number of people for such is the beauty and artistry of his work. It possesses this quality which allows it to reach out and touch any individual who will permit it to do so. As far as what it is that these prose say to me I firmly believe that these lyrics are so elusive that their personal significance could change from moment to moment. As is such I will try to write quickly. In a general sense, with these verses Dylan is trying to say that the younger one is the more he thinks he knows but in reality he knows much less and as one approaches maturity he knows much more and is aware of that which he is in truth unaware.

Dylan has rightfully come to the conclusion in this piece that in his younger years he acted in a purported "adult" manner when in truth his views, goals, and purpose couldn't have been further from this reality. He relates how he strove after certain "noble" pursuits in his youth and quite successfully in fact, only to discover that that which once allured him so was hollow and that which he neglected was in fact of the greatest value. He prematurely made up his mind about the world, about what is good and what is evil only to discover that his conceptions...