Analysis of Working Class Hero by John Lennon

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WORKING CLASS HERO: It’s something to be

“Working Class Hero” is a song made for the class split back in the 1940’s and 1950’s. The song is written by John Lennon, who was one of the singers in the old and legendary band, The Beatles, with Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison. He recorded the song between the 26th of September and the 6th of October; the song was though first released in 1971 in the United States and in UK in 1975. The song was on his first post-Beatles album “Imagine”. John Lennon was a working class hero himself. At least that is what he says in the end of the song; “If you want to be a hero, well, just follow me.”

The theme of the song is most likely the social classes. We have the lower class, the working class, the middle class and last but not least the high class. I am now going to analyze and interpret each verse and the refrain. In the very first verse there are 3 phrases.

“As soon as you're born they make you feel small
by giving you no time instead of it all.
Till the pain is so big you feel nothing at all”

The lyrics say that you are born to feel small, which means if you are born in the working class, your parents will not encourage you to go to school and be the best in the world. They would rather tell you that you are only born to do the necessary, because you will never become anything different than they became themselves. And then the refrain comes along:

“A working class hero is something to be
a working class is something to be”

The meaning of the refrain is that if your grandfather was a farmer and your father was a farmer, you can “only” become the same, because it is something to be. And therefore it is not accepted to break out of the social class that you are born in. In the following verse the 3 phrases say:

“They hurt you at home and they hit you at school.
They hate you if you're clever and they despise a fool.
Till you're so...
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