"It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)" - Bob Dylan -- Song Analysis

Essay by Gidz.08High School, 11th gradeB+, March 2009

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Bob Dylan is an American songwriter, poet, author, and painter, who has been a major figure in popular music for five decades. "It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)," is one of his best songs and it was released on the 22nd of March, 1965. Dylan's songs were appreciated by many acclaimed composers like the Beatles themselves. George Harrison said, "We just played it, just wore it out.The content of the song lyrics and just the attitude―it was incredibly original and beautiful." The line in this particular song, "He not busy being born is busy dying" is popular with politicians. Jimmy Carter used the line in his acceptance speech at the 1976 Democratic National convention. His songs have intent meaning. His songs have the perfect word choice. His songs have a connection with people; he is Bob Dylan.

"It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)," is not just any other song; the song contains explanations; the explanations on a man and the problems that face him.

These issues are often prevalent problems that are perceptible throughout the ancient times and into today. In this song, Dylan comments on a multitude of topics, ranging from war to the government, and into individual corruption. In the fifth stanza of the song, the first few lines, interpreted one way, show how the actions of the men in power influence everybody around them. However, these actions are not thought of in regard to the people, but to further their own personal motives. These "private reasons great or small/ Can be seen in the eyes of those that call/ To make all those that should be killed to crawl," could very well refer to politicians leading their people to war, or even display the characteristics of the strong industrialists who take advantage of...