Essay about Strange Fruit by Billy Holiday

Essay about Strange Fruit by Billy Holiday

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  Strange Fruit Break Down
  Strange fruit is an amazing dark poem that was sung by Billie Holiday as a very powerful deep meaning song. Strange Fruit is a terrifying protest against the inhumane acts of racism. Strange Fruit was about the murders and lynching going on in the south at the time from public hangings to burnings. The south has a cruel and terrifying past that still haunts people who live down there, reminding them that it was only a short time ago. Very rarely did any one person get prosecuted for killing a person of dark skin. It was difficult to bring suspected parties to trial when often times the whole town had some involvement.
While the lyrics never mention lynching, the metaphor is painfully clear:
Southern trees bear a strange fruitBlood on the leaves and blood at the rootBlack bodies swingin' in the Southern breezeStrange fruit hangin' from the poplar treesPastoral scene of the gallant SouthThe bulgin' eyes and the twisted mouthScent of magnolias sweet and freshThen the sudden smell of burnin' fleshHere is a fruit for the crows to pluckFor the rain to gather, for the wind to suckFor the sun to rot, for the tree to dropHere is a strange and bitter crop

  The second and third line "Blood on the leaves and blood at the root/Black bodies
  Griffith 2
swingin' in the southern breeze" Is a symbol to resemble how people in the south would
brutishly beat down black people and then hang them in a tree and watch them swing
back and forth when a wind blew. In line eight and nine "the sudden smell of burnin flesh/Here is a fruit for the crows to pluck" were both lines if imagery identifying that not only did they burn the bodies in the trees, but the people who were hung were hanging for the crows to fe...


... middle of paper ...


...n bring you to his understanding through more then one method of delivery. These emotions will be continued to be felt for generations to come.

Works Cited

Phillips, Caryl. "Blood at the Root." The Guardian. Guardian News and Media, 18 Aug. 2007. Web. 03 May 2014.
Blair, Elizabeth. "The Strange Story Of The Man Behind 'Strange Fruit'" NPR. NPR, 05 Sept. 2012. Web. 30 Apr. 2014.
Heft, Harold. "'Strange' Evolution of Legendary Song." The Jewish Daily Forward. The Jewish Daily Forward, 27 Mar. 2012. Web. 03 May 2014.
Daniels, Peter. "World Socialist Web Site." "Strange Fruit" The Story of a Song. International Committee of the Fourth International, 8 Feb. 2002. Web. 04 May 2014.
PBS. "The Murder of Emmett Till." PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 02 May 2014.
Dizon, Ashely. "Racism in the 1930s by Ashleydizon." StudyMode. StudyMode, May 2011. Web. 05 May 2014.

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