17 February 2010

The Floyd subversive racists?

Dave, NJ, again: "Were Pink Floyd accused of racism or subversion when The Wall was released?"

On May 6, 1980, Another Brick in the Wall Part 2 was banned in South Africa after the song was adopted as a war-cry for the black nationwide school boycott.  As a result, the Apartheid government, specifically the Directorate of Publications, not only prohibited the sale and broadcast of both the single and the album in full, but also directed that these albums be confiscated.  They were.  Reports are that the wienies were good that night.

Of course there was also a big press outcry in Britain over the use of children on the record which caused a bit of a stir at the time.  Otherwise, despite such isolated incidents of ignorance and misunderstanding, the provocative subject matter contained in The Wall escaped such misguided attention.  It must be said for the rest of the civilized world, The Wall was understood to be a dark fantasy and foremost a cautionary tale.

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