The Effect of Dylan and Elvis on Culture

  • Length: 883 words (2.5 double-spaced pages)
  • Rating: Excellent
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document

The Effect of Dylan and Elvis on Culture

The 1950’s and 1960’s were a time of great change in the United States of America. Some people were trying to hold on to traditional values while others wanted dramatic changes. Many people from the older generations felt that their was too much change going on and that the younger generations were disrespectful. The Cold War was going on during this time as well, and many people felt very differently about the situation. The older generation felt like Americans needed to be willing to support the defense of the nation while younger people rebelled against those traditional ideas and values. Many of the traditional values such as religion, loyalty and trust for government, and sexuality were being revolted against by young people, especially those in college. Figures like Elvis Presley and Bob Dylan became voices for the entire generation. Others like Joseph Heller became voices through their literature and ideas. Because of this many people were stuck between their traditional values and the new counter culture that people like Elvis and Dylan were representing.
Elvis Presley grew up in a small town in Mississippi and had a very traditional upbringing. His mother and father worked average jobs and were considered lower middle class. Elvis was raised to have traditional values like religion, respect for elders, loyalty and patriotism for the U.S.A., although these traditions never left, Elvis is intent on following what he believes is the American dream. Elvis is portrayed as a rock star that rebels against traditional values but in reality he is very closely tied to his values. Elvis’ dissent from tradition is shown in a few examples. First, Elvis begins to find his own unique style and haircut, which leads into bigger things. Another example of Elvis’ dissent was when he openly admitted not wanting to serve his country in the military. This totally went against traditional values regarding loyalty and patriotism for his country. Elvis did not want the military to take away from his fame and fortune. Another example of Elvis’ dissent was his sexual attitude, Elvis was very provocative and many parents blamed him and his music for their children’s promiscuity.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"The Effect of Dylan and Elvis on Culture." 25 Jun 2018
Title Length Color Rating  
Elvis’ Cultural Impact on Americans Essay - There is no doubt that Elvis Presley’s impact on American society has revolutionized the world of music and movies, which eventually earned him the name . From truck driver to Rock and Roll icon, Presley’s charismatic attitude and dance moves became forever remembered in American history. His record-breaking career set a higher bar to many more musicians. Talented in both vocals and acting, his image alone speaks for its self. Elvis’ audience consisted of all races, ages, and gender; his style of music combined gospel, country, blues, and Rock and Roll....   [tags: Elvis, culture, USA, ] 700 words
(2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Elvis Presley Essay - Elvis Presley was rock & roll’s first real American star, not to mention one of the most important cultural forces in history, a hip-shaking symbol of abolition for the steady America of the 1950s. Presley’s personality was so fresh and striking that he could never be labeled. He changed music forever as a king and a music legend. Elvis became the first rock-and-roll superstar that broke the boundaries of American culture. Almost everyone knows that Elvis Presley was a famous singer, but many people don’t fully understand what he contributed to popular music to earn his widespread fame....   [tags: rock and roll, music, American culture]
:: 5 Works Cited
1187 words
(3.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Elvis Presley Essays - Elvis Presley Essay When historians look at history and at reasons why society changed many focus on conflicts like wars, civil rights, and poverty. However, there is so much more that over time changed America. One of the most influential subjects that helped this change was Elvis Presley. Through his music, which was influenced by black artists, he allowed white Americans to view a new group of performers. He tested social boundaries that helped him change American culture. His appearance and singing would end up changing the teenage world by introducing new trends in fashion and music....   [tags: Biography Elvis Presley] 1099 words
(3.1 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Essay The Legacy of Elvis Presley - Many of us have a dream in life to be remembered by all for something great. It’s a lofty goal that only few have, or ever will achieve. Elvis Presley was one of the few people in our American history that achieved this status. Known as “The King of Rock and Roll”, his achievements have influenced our country like none of its precedents. This paper will explain Elvis Presley’s life, his death, and his profound influence after life. On January 8th, 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi, the “King of Rock and Roll” was born....   [tags: Biography of Elvis ]
:: 16 Works Cited
2508 words
(7.2 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
Elvis Presley's Influence on American Culture Essay - Elvis Presley is one of the biggest names in rock and roll. Singer, musician and actor he was an American icon. He is best known as the King of Rock and Roll. His musical influence included the country and pop music of the time, the gospel music he sang in church and the black R&B music he listened to as a teenager (Comprehensive History of Elvis Presley’s Dynamic Life). Elvis has influenced American culture not only while he was living but also in today’s 21st century. It wasn’t easy for him to be accepted; in fact many adults and the older generations of his time were appalled by his performances and his music....   [tags: Musicians ]
:: 5 Works Cited
1238 words
(3.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Dylan Thomas' Poems of 1933 Essay - Dylan Thomas' Poems of 1933 Show how, in his poems of 1933, Dylan Thomas uses language and poetic form to explore both his own metaphysical viewpoint and his position as a poet in relation to the rest of society. In this essay I will look at how Dylan Thomas uses language and poetic form to explore his own metaphysical viewpoint and his position as a poet in relation to the rest of society. I will begin by looking at and analysing the poems that explore DT’s metaphysical ideas. In this part of my analysis I will be analysing relevant parts of the following poems; ‘The force that through the green fuse’, ‘And death shall have no dominion’ and ‘Why east wind chills’....   [tags: Dylan Thomas Poets Poetry Language Essays] 2847 words
(8.1 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Elvis Presley Essay example - Elvis Presley Elvis Presley enjoyed a long reign as the King of Rock N' Roll. He succeeded in not only stealing the hearts of every teenage girl in America, but also in redefining pop culture. Not only did Elvis redefine the world of pop culture but he helped to create the genre of Rock-n-Roll. According to Horace Logan, a radio producer for the music show the Louisiana Hayride who helped to launch Elvis's career, "Elvis changed everything. He changed the way popular music sounded, the way it looked, the way it acted-everything about it" (Logan and Sloan 9)....   [tags: Elvis Presley Biography Work Life] 1205 words
(3.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Elvis Presley Essays - Elvis Presley Elvis Presley was a legend in rock and roll in life. He still is the king of rock and roll even in death. He was born on January 8 1935 in Mississippi in 1948 his family moved to Memphis Tennessee, where he graduated high school from Humes High School. He was attracted to music at a young age and began his music career in 1954 with Sun Records label in Memphis. In late 1955 his recording contract was bought by RCA Victor. By 1956 he was an international sensation. He starred in 33 films and did hundreds of shows and specials....   [tags: Elvis Presely Biography Rock Legend] 1415 words
(4 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Elvis Essay - On January 8, 1935 at 4:35 a.m., a little boy by the name of Elvis Aaron Presley was born to parents Vernon Elvis Presley and Gladys Love Presley in a two-room house located in Tupelo, Mississippi. Little did anyone know that this little boy would forever change the world of music and entertainment. Although this was a happy occasion for both of them, it was also a very sad one, too. Elvis had a twin brother, Jesse Garon Presley, who was stillborn just a couple of hours before Elvis himself was born....   [tags: essays research papers] 1415 words
(4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Elvis - Elvis Elvis was raised within a poor family that lived "on the other side of the tracks" which exposed him to intermingle with black culture. "He was in a position to absorb a real variety of musical influences, including R & B, white and black gospel, C & W, bluegrass, western swing, and pop." (Pg. 35) When listening to the radio, Elvis was open to the elements of both pop music and assorted forms of C & W. And because of his living circumstances he was introduced to R & B and gospel, making Elvis racially integrated....   [tags: Papers] 394 words
(1.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]

Related Searches

Elvis at times though showed that he never truly left his traditional values. For example, Elvis always regrets not spending more time with his mother before she passed away. Another example of this was when Elvis upset about not having a stable girlfriend like his ex Dixie. Even though Elvis was a teen idol and sex symbol, he never truly left his traditional ways.
Bob Dylan was another figure who dissented from his traditional values as he became the voice of a generation. Bob Dylan left his traditional life to look for a new start, he found Woody Guthrie and his new life began. Bob Dylan wrote many of his songs during the 1950’s and 1960’s during the Cold War and other key events in United States history. Many of these songs were against the Vietnam War and other important issues of the time such as racism. Many young people begin to listen and believe the songs and eventually became influenced by them. Because of this Bob Dylan became the voice of a generation. Dylan also challenged pretty much any type of authority, including cold war values and white supremacy. Dylan had a life changing motor cycle accident and tries to become more of a family man. He decides he does not want to be the voice of the generation anymore. This is like Elvis in that both left their traditional routes to find their own version of the American dream, but both reverted back to their traditional ways throughout their lives.
Joseph Heller was an American author who used his literary works to speak out against the Cold War. He was the author of Catch 22 which was a critique of the Cold War. He made it seem as if the idea of war was insane. For example, at one point in the book Youssarian tells his commander he is scared of flying because he does not want to die, his commander tells him not to be ashamed because it is okay to be afraid, Youssarian tells him he is not ashamed just scared. This demonstrates Heller’s views on the war, he felt like people made it seem crazy to not want to fight when it is really crazy to want to fight. It is sane not to want to get killed yet the only way out of the war was to be insane, hence the title Catch 22. Youssarian was against everything because it just did not make sense to him.
Elvis, Dylan, and Heller all used their influence to rebel and in doing so became the voice of a generation. They all had traditional values but also had anti-traditional views on some things. All were in pursuit of what they believed was the American dream and all had an event which caused them to revert to their traditional values more. The moral of all of this is that it is okay to question and look for change, and bring issues to question, but it is not wrong to want traditional values. There has to be a balance between traditional values and new changes.

Return to