If the North Were the South, Same Thing Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 31 July 2016

If the North Were the South, Same Thing

Ricardo Arjona is one of the most renowned Latin American singers. He is characterized for his socially conscious and heartfelt folk ballads and rock tunes. In addition, he also plays a variety of styles that combine traditional South American folk music with rock, hip-hop, and classical music, Arjona sings about subjects ranging from faded love to social inequities. In 1996, Arjona wrote the song “Si el Norte Fuera el Sur” (If the North were the South), in which he expresses a subjective, yet truthful point of view of what the North American culture is; and how it could change if we exchange places with the South. In this song, Arjona uses many literactully techniques such as irony and analogies; Arjona also adds a type of hardcore rock and an interesting use of the electric guitar.

There are many literally elements that this song has, but the main element is the plot or theme of the song, which is pretty straight and to the point. “Si el Norte Fuera el Sur” (If the North were the South)’s main plot is a story of how the North could experience all the social struggles that the South Americans countries have to deal with, if as the song’s title suggest “. “Si el Norte Fuera el Sur” (If the North were the South). The main plot is divided into three stages; the first stage is the introduction, in which Arjona gives a subjective opinion of what the North really is all about. Then, he moves to the second stage or the body of the song; during this stage Arjona mentions a series of well known North American personages and situations that help him establish his exchange of geography. Finally, the third stage or conclusion is when Arjona really say what the bottom line of all this is; the fact that nothing will really change.

Ricardo Arjona is well known for the rich content of literally elements in his lyrics, especially for the touch of irony and analogies. “Con 18 eres un niño para un trago en algun bar, pero ya eres todo un hombre pa’ la guerra y pa’ matar.” (With 18, you are only a boy for a drink in some bar, but you are already a man to go to war and to kill), this is a perfect example of an irony of living in the United States, in which at the age of 18 you cannot legally drink, yet you are allow to receive combat training to kill someone. In the song’s chorus, Arjona says “al diablo la geografia se acabaron las fronteras” (The hell with geography, there aren’t any borders left), the truth is that borders still exist, but he wasn’t talking about a literally border; Arjona used this analogy to tell us that we are the same and that our geographic position doesn’t mean anything.

Ricardo Arjona with his unique style and use of musical instrument; he has put a type of hardcore rock rhythm, which is use to make an impression in his listener. In this song, Arjona utilizes an electric guitar, and a trumpet, with the drums on the back. The rhythm started slow tempo, but strong as if he was upset with the ironies in the North. Then, the tempo began to run faster; the drums and the trumpet were sort of creating an atmosphere of excitement, it makes you feel as if you were a protestant of social inequalities. Finally, he concludes with a slow and heavy electric guitar melody, where he then stop for at least 3 seconds and concludes with the words “Si el Norte fuera el Sur, seria la misma porqueria, yo cantaria un rap y esta cancion no existiria.” (If the North were the South, it would have been the same crap, I would be singing a rap and this song wouldn’t even exist).



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  • University/College: University of Arkansas System

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Date: 31 July 2016

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