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Blog post #15

Through every society there has been a set social structure. The wealthy are the people in power; they rule the lives of the people below them. In the song All Along The Watchtower, Bob Dylan uses the literary techniques of dialogue to demonstrate the inequitable social structure and how there are always people trying to break that pattern.
The dialogue between the joker and the thief is used to show the two different ways people reacted to the uneven distribution of wealth and power.The joker and the thief are symbolic for the rule benders and barrier breakers in society.  As the joker starts with his reservations about business men, the "wine" they take from him represents the upper class taking away their prosperity. The upper class makes it's money off of the middle and lower classes by selling them goods for a large profit. In some kingdoms the kings would take some of the villagers crop to feed themselves and have an abundance of supplies, making the poor poorer and the rich richer. The division of wealth has always been controlled by the upper class in every society, leaving the poor to fend for themselves. Upper Classes act as a parasite on societies back sucking their livelihood for their own benefit. The joker continues, "plowmen dig my earth" demonstrating how the people have no power over anything. Even your birthright to our own possessions and to work or live on the earth can be stripped from you. the satiety of land means nothing to the upper class when they opportunity is presented to them to make a profit and benefit themselves. This can even be seen today with the pipeline protests to protect the water supply and the sacred ground in North Dakota. This ideology has been passed down through generations through people who have never met, which leads me to the conclusion that money drives people to become evil, but are not inherently evil. When a person is divided to single handedly hold more power than the many, it's in human nature for them to become narcissistic and self serving. "you and I, we've been through that ,and this is not our fate" Taking these two characters as the riders at the end, you can tell they are well traveled and have seen this social structure before. As this is not their "fate" it shows that these men are not inherently evil but did not have great wealth. Also as the thief-- a generally negatively connotated profession--was described as kind. They did not follow the status quo and therefore made their own path. This use of dialogue create this personal connection to contrast the "princes" who separated themselves from the people, almost dehumanizing them. You are able to take line 9-12 and put them at the beginning to show that this is a cycle in the human condition. Generations go through the same thing, it happens decade after decade millennium after millennium. It's a cycle that the "Thieves and jokers" have tried to break ny going down their own path, but just as a circle has no and neither does this cycle so long as people exist.


  1. I really like how deep you took the analysis of the different classes. I also like how you included references to the pipeline and the other kingdoms


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