Last Reviewed on March 17, 2020, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 521
Yeah, politics.——Not songs abou' Fianna fuckin' Fail or annythin' like tha'. Real politics. (They weren't with him.)—Where are yis from? (He answered the question himself.)—Dublin. (He asked another one.) – Wha' part o' Dublin? Barrytown. Wha' class are yis? Workin' class. Are yis proud of it? Yeah, yis are. (Then a practical question.)—Who buys the most records? The workin' class. Are yis with me? (Not really.)—Your music should be abou' where you're from an' the sort o' people yeh come from.———Say it once, say it loud, I'm black an' I'm proud.
Derek and Outspan go to the pub to ask Jimmy Rabbite, who knows a lot about music, how to start a band. Jimmy asks them the purpose of their band, and they don't know what it is. In this excerpt, Jimmy tries to convince them that music has a political purpose. It's not just about Fianna Fail, an Irish political party, but about the larger world situation.
Jimmy connects their situation as working-class Irish people to that of African Americans because both groups are oppressed and live in poverty. He wants music to be more than just love songs; instead, he wants it to be a means of protest. Doyle's book is largely written with these types of working-class speech patterns and it's filled with obscenities. His purpose is to convey the way people really speak—in dialect—and to help readers feel like they are present with the characters.
They were stunned by what came next.—The Irish are the niggers of Europe, lads.
They nearly gasped: it was so true.
Jimmy tries to convince Derek and Outspan, the founding members of the band, that they are similar to African Americans because of the oppression they face as working class Irishmen. He tries to get the members of the band to connect with figures like Ray Charles, James Brown, and Aretha Franklin, hoping that the musicians and singers...
(The entire section contains 521 words.)
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