Spark a Revolution Through Poetry and Music – Childish Gambino

Donald Glover, the mind and mastery behind ‘This is America’ has been creating a worldwide sensation with his biggest single. The controversial song has created ripples and the video tugs at heart and has left viewers wide-eyed with confusion about what happens on screen. Very casually he released the launch of his new single when he was hosting ‘Saturday Night Live’ through his alternative name Childish Gambino. The song and the whole video is about racism and what the current generation’s experience is about. The poetry behind the song is hidden inside the entire music video and the effects. Together, they throw in some fantastic acting into the experience and Voila! We have a music video that has for once used artistic nuances in creating ripples and getting people to talk about the poet and the song. The funniest part about the video is that people don’t want the video just once; it has a specific addictive nature to it and draws people to the screen. 

Glover is known for showcasing surreality to everything he does, and it has beautifully transferred to his song as well. Racism, Violence and all aspects that ruin today’s American society is poetically professed along with surreal screen elements racking up a storm. In the first 48 hours after its release, the song garnered over 30 million views on youtube alone. Every person who watched the video, have interpreted the poem that is the song in every way they have been able to understand it.

The Inner Meaning

The entire song is weaved with both visual effects as well as poetic verses that express the situation that is eating up America today. Breaking down the whole video and song entails looking at the video and interpreting what is shown and trying to understand what the verse is saying as well. There are many parts of the song that are visualized with a deeper meaning.

  • The song begins with a man seated on a chair and who is casually playing the guitar. While people identified the interpretation of the scene a being the father of a black teen who was murdered in 2012, the character is Calvin the Second who played a very crucial part in this song.
  • The camera pans to show Donald Glover stand behind Calvin and shoots him with a gun from the back of his pant. Even the stance he takes when shooting is similar to Jim Crow who was known for his pre-civil rights-era segregation laws.
  • The crazy dance moves and the background elements that happened in tandem to Glover’s expressions on screen is purposefully and skillfully threaded into the video by Sherrie Silver. Even the steps used were the ones that the media and people mocked Black people for.
  • The whole white culture and how it has affected how black people are perceived is touched upon in the song and video. The Charleston church massacre represented in the video and words of the song is by far the most jaw-dropping part.

Glover, tells the views that they have to stop to think about how they will survive as black people in America. He makes them wonder about how he moves a being chased by cops. The words are like a dagger to the heart and a slap of reality to the viewers. A right Apocalyptic song that has painfully captured the raw truth is what this song identifies as.