M7A1: Rock and Roll and Society Final Paper

Artists of rock music, throughout its history, have used their music to respond to the political and social issues surrounding them. Some have used their music as a means to express their political or philosophical views, while others have used their music to demonstrate a certain event or time in history.

Take for example how The Doors, Donovan and Jimi Hendrix each put their own spin on the psychedelic experience, or how Dylan’s songs “The Times They Are A-Changin’” and “Subterranean Homesick Blues” are a call to break with the norms of the past and takes a cynical look at the generation gap. To comment on social and political issues bands like Country Joe and the Fish with their song  “I Feel Like I’m Fixin’” To Die Rag” used their performance at Woodstock to protest the Vietnam war, and the Supreme’s “Love Child” and the Temptations’ “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” take a realistic look at urban issues of single parenthood and poverty.

For this project, you will research and create a presentation on the impact a single social or political issue has had on rock and roll music during the years 1955-1973. Your focus may be on one rock and roll band or on rock as a whole.  (Please note, I can pull together the presentation if you could write the essay).

To help you out, I have provided below a list of political and social issues that occurred during the time period I would like you to focus on. If there is a political or social issue that is not on the list that you would like to research, you may do so. 

Each source must be carefully documented using APA or MLA style (i.e. the name of the article, book, website or database you retrieved the article from, the author, the date, and the page numbers) and be followed by a one paragraph summary of the article. Focus your summary on the article’s thesis and supporting points. 

Your paper should be a minimum of 750 words and a maximum of 1,200 words. The project must include:

Thesis statement
An introduction, a body, and conclusion
A minimum of 3 sources
Reference to one social issue that you have selected and a discussion of how rock and roll in music was impacted by the social issue. Cite examples from the listening you have done to research this topic. 

Possible Topics

Sexuality/sexual revolution
Race relations/civil rights
Teenage rebellion
Urban issues
Black power/black pride
Cover Songs
Crossover Artists
The Generation Gap

One Reference could be:



ISBN13: 9780393624144

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