Theme Of We Didn T Start The Fire

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In the song We didn’t Start the Fire, Billy Joel does a summary of the most relevant events that took place between 1949 and 1989. The events mentioned in the song include political, cultural, and historical events. His generation is blamed for all the conflicts that occurred in those forty years, when in reality, those conflicts have roots many generations in the past. He portrays the positive and negative effects his generation had in the world. In the positive side, they had advances in science and many cultural events. In the other hand, they were involved in dozens of conflicts all around the world that left misery and death. He emphasizes that many of the problems that are blamed on his generation were started by a previous generation…show more content…
The first theme relates to the conflicts that are mentioned in the song. Most of these conflicts were generated hundreds of years ago and passed from one generation to the other. One example of these problems that can be seen in the song is the segregation in America, which was originated hundreds of years ago when the first slaves settled in the Americas. Eventually, all the racial problems exploded in the 1960s and the racial discrimination was blamed to Joel´s generation. In addition, the second theme is the failed attempt of his generation to achieve world peace. Billy Joel’s generation tried to fix international conflicts and achieve peace. They also had notable leaders like Kennedy and Malcom X, who tried to fight for human rights. As expressed by Billy Joel “No we didn’t light it, but we tried to fight it.” With this phrase, he is trying to express that his generation tried to fix several conflicts in the world. Some elements that helped analyze and determine the meaning of the song are the rhyme elements, figurative language, sound effects, and other elements of…show more content…
A rhythm is “a literary device which demonstrates long and short pattern through stressed and unstressed syllables” (CITATION). To create a rhythm in his song, Billy Joel uses end rhyme, internal rhyme, near rhyme, and rhyme scheme. The first rhyme element used by Billy Joel is the end rhyme. End rhyme is when the last syllables within a verse rhyme to make the song flow better (CITATION). He uses end Rhyme when he repeats words at the end of a line with similar sounds. For example, burning rhymes with turning in the lines “it was always burning…Since the world’s been turning” (CITATION). The second element used by Billy Joel is the internal rhyme, which is when two words or more in the same line rhyme (CITATION). Internal rhyme can be shown by Billy Joel in the line “Harry Truman, Doris Day, Red China, Johnnie Ray.” In this line Day rhymes with Ray. In addition, Billy Joel also uses near rhyme in his song. Near rhyme is defined as the rhyme when words share either the vowel sound or consonant sound, but not both (CITATION). One example of near rhyme in the song is “Davy Crockett, Peter Pan, Elvin Presley, Disneyland.” In this line Peter Pan rhymes with Disneyland. Both words have a similar sound, but are not completely the same. Billy Joel uses a Rhyme scheme, which means that he uses a pattern of rhyme (CITATION). This can be shown when Joel repeats “fire…burning…turning…fire…it…it.” He repeats end rhymes with a

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