Choose a protest song to research and analyze. you may choose a song

  1. Choose a protest song to research and analyze. You may choose a song from the list, or you may consult your instructor if you have a song that you would like to use for the assignment.

    List of Protest Songs for Analysis

    Complete the Analyze a Protest Song worksheet.

    • “Where Is the Love” by the Black Eyed Peas
    • “Redemption Song” or “Get up, Stand up” by Bob Marley
    • Song of the Abolitionist
    • “All She Wants to Do Is Dance” by Don Henley
    • “Sunday Bloody Sunday” by U2
    • Cambodia” by Joan Baez
    • “We Shall Be Free” by Garth Brooks
    • “Youth of the Nation” by P.O.D.


Analyze a Protest Song—Worksheet

Instructions: To use this chart, you can print, copy, and paste into a document of your own, or create a chart of your own with the same information.

Complete the following using your selected protest song.

A. Provide the Song Facts

  1. Song title:
  2. Songwriter:
  3. Performed by:
  4. Describe the historical context in three to five sentences.
  5. Imagine that you are creating a music video for the song. Include two images that would complement or support the historical context of the song.
  6. Copy and paste the lyrics. Be sure to edit or alter any words that are not school appropriate.


B. Label and Analyze the Lyrics

  1. Identify one allusion in the song. You may need to research any unfamiliar references in the song lyrics to determine the allusion. Paste or type the lines in the space below.
  2. Locate one website that explains the event, phenomenon, or person to which the line(s) allude. Paste the website address and one sentence explaining the allusion you have identified.
  3. Complete the following chart based on your selected song. Identify two total figures of speech and two sound devices to include in the chart below.


    What is the figure of speech or sound device?
    Actual Lines from the Song 
    Paste the lines of each example in the space provided.
    Does the example create an image, create a particular mood, make listeners feel something, or make listeners think something?

    Figure of Speech #1





    Figure of Speech #2





    Sound Device #1





    Sound Device #2





  4. What is the tone of the song? How do the figures of speech and sound devices that you have identified contribute to the tone? 
  5. What is the mood of the song? How do the figures of speech and sound devices that you have identified create the mood? 
  6. In a short paragraph of four to six sentences, discuss the effectiveness of this protest song. Did or does it influence people to change how they think, feel, or act?
  7. In a brief paragraph of four to six sentences, discuss why it is important for people to participate in (by supporting, protesting, etc.) current political, social, and cultural issues.

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