Agent of Change
“We're trying to sell peace, like a product, you know, and sell it like people sell soap or soft drinks. And it's the only way to get people aware that peace is possible, and it isn't just inevitable to have violence…” - JOHN LENNON, The David Frost Show, June. 14, 1969. (N.A, 2011.) John Lennon was an icon to people across the nation. A definite Agent of Change. He was only 40 when he died, but his musical legacy, and peace movement are still very much impactful; even up to today. John lived a short life, however the work he did during that short amount of time he was here helped to change the world’s ideas of peace forever. Some of his most popular music expressed thoughts of peace and change, even in some of John’s earlier work including “Help!” which he wrote with Paul McCartney. This song depicts the narrator is in dire help of a helping hand from a friend (depression or just issues in general) how friends should be there for one another.(Oachs, 2010.) Many of John’s actions in the public can be categorized by the positions that Malcolm Gladwell had set out in his book “The Tipping Point”, however, John was such a complex figure in society that more than one area applies to him. His connections with an already set fame in the music industry allowed him to give a public voice for peace and his thoughts on the Vietnam war, he knew that it was a cruel world, and in order to get people to listen, he’d have to market peace as though it were a product. He was showing people how much better the world would be with peace. John was fighting for peace up until the day he died.
John was born on October 9, 1940, in Liverpool, Merseyside, England, during a German air raid in World War II. When he was 4 years old, Lennon's parents separated and he ended up living with his Aunt Mimi. Lennon's father was a merchant seaman. He was not present at his son's birth and did not see a lot of his son when he was small. (Oachs, 2010.) Growing up as a teenager, his mother would often visit him, she taught him to play the banjo, and bought him his first guitar. She was the one who introduced him to music.
In 1957, at a church event, John displayed his love for music with the band he formed with some of his close friends. He called this band “ The Quarrymen”. The fame of “ The Quarrymen” quickly disintegrated into Liverpool. Soon enough the band of many boys narrowed down to just four. They went on to become the iconic Beatles. (Johnson, 2007.) John was inspired by the musical talent of Elvis Presley. He is even quoted as saying “had there been no Elvis, there would have been no ‘Beatles’.” (Oachs, 2010.). Elvis was also an agent of change in the sense that he changed music with his distinct sound, and his movement for racism [the way he sang the music of African American artists and credited them for it]. Although John Lennon had little involvement with the racial movement occurring during his time, he did attend to many of the other issues occurring at that time, including the Women’s movement, but especially the peace movement to prompt the end of the war. John is an Agent of Change because of the immense work he did during the 1960s, 70s and 80s to promote peace involvement. In 1969, John had renounced his involvement with “The Beatles”. (Johnson, 2007.) He enjoyed his time working with his band, and long time friends; however, they did not share a lot of his views, and refused to sing his songs that had very strong messages. John’s views meant that he did not care about selling lots of albums, and meeting lots of fame. His views translated to the fact that he wanted to make a difference in the world, he wanted injustice to stop, and for everyone to get along. (Ford, 2009.)...
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