Entry 8 Literary essay

Changing the world


Many international famous celebrities show interest in social issues, however not all of them are as commited as Bono (U2), Elton John and Sting are. The three of them focus their attention on minority groups which are people who experience unequal  treatment and less power within their society and because they are socially segregated , they suffer. Their songs , such as "where the streets have no names", "All the young girls love Alice" and "An englishman in New York" respectively, attempt to illustrate their dedication as activists.

Bono, with his Irish band U2, gives concerts in supports of AIDS. Not only does he back ill people with the "RED" organisation, but also he is the foundator of "ONE" to which he is commited to taking action to end with the extreme poverty. The author of the song emphasises in his lyric that "streets have no names", referring to the roads that have numbers instead, and they indicate the social and religious status of the people who live on those streets; the cities are divided according to their wealth and beliefs:  the further up the hills the houses are located, the more expensive they become. Bono claims for a world  where people are not condemned for their thoughts or wealth; where people do not belong to any label; they are just people.

Elton John also established a foundation in order to investigate the causes of the AIDS disease  since he has seen his close friends dying from it. He is also commited to end with the homosexual discrimition by taking part in gay pride parades and by speaking about homosexuality openly as he did in a concert in Ukraine; a country where gays or lesbians are oppressed. The song provides useful insights into the problematic. The 16-year-old girl feels that "it´s like acting in a movie  when you got the wrong part". It indicates that Alice cannot express herself freely; that she does not belong to anywhere and feels trapped, thus, she kills herself. The author observes that sexual discrimination could lead a young girl to take a rough decision.

Sting is interested in religious and political problematics. Besides, he is interested in sexual segregation as well as Elton John. The author was inspired by his friend Quentin Crisp, an English gay writer, who felt  as an alien in New York. He moved  to USA in order to find a release from the malevolent society of Soho which discriminated him. In spite of being blamed for being an effeminate man, he settled down in New York in his seventies. Although homosexuals were  treated as social outcasts, Crisp lived his gay life openly and being himself as the song points: " be yourself no matter what they say".

The three artists have the capacity to comprehend global issues and work for them by struggling  against the social prejudice . Minority groups are still segregated and largely  affected.

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