What is the meaning of the song "end of innocence"?

2 Answers

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Background and Content: “Henley’s lyrics take the form of a personal remembrance related to a close friend or companion, and evoke a powerful sense of nostalgia for the lost innocence of childhood and an earlier time. The reflections and the emotional responses that result represent the end of the innocence of the baby-boomer generation, confronted with the nihilism, consumerism, and militarism of the Reagan era. Even as they yearn for the simplicity and values of the past, and the uncorrupted people they used to be, the song sees these characters and this generation coming to terms with the responsibilities and challenges facing Americans entering middle-age in the 1980s.”


    “The ‘tired old man that we elected king’ is reference to US president Ronald Reagan. There are a lot of political overtones in the song, as Henley strongly opposed Reagan’s agenda.”

    “The line about ‘beating ploughshares into swords’ is a distortion of Isaiah 2:4 in which Isaiah describes the end of times: ‘And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.’

    The inversion of the words most likely hints at the decline of the number of family farms and the increase in US military power in the ‘80s as a signal of the end times of innocence.”


    Figures of speech:

    ‘the days were long and rolled beneath a deep blue sky’

    days can’t actually roll beneath a sky like a wagon can

    ‘and wash away this sin’

    washing sin away, like taking a bath

    'they're beating plowshares into swords'

    plowshares can't physically be changed into swords, nor swords into plowshares

    'for this tired old man that we elected king'

    Ronald Reagan was elected President of the United States, not king

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  • nancey
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    often used as "Oh touche" taken from fencing whilst participant recognises opponent s sensible strike he might , if he s have been given any bloody manners, say "touche" from french which means touch Innit,

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