Symbolism In The Sound Of Silence

1094 Words5 Pages
In the past century alone, a new form of entertainment has stepped into the world and has gained the public’s undivided attention. Many people spend hours on end in front of an electronic screen nowadays instead doing something productive with their lives or spending time with others. Two musicians in 1966 saw this new turn in entertainment for what it had the potential to become and wrote a song littered with figurative language that told a story from an unknown character’s point of view. Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Sound of Silence” reveals how people have become so obsessed with media that they have forgotten what is meaningful. Throughout “The Sound of Silence” a constant theme is the different kinds of light that Simon and Garfunkel’s…show more content…
In the same verse, the lyricists continue the story by mentioning, “[The character’s] eyes were stabbed by/ The flash of a neon light/ That split the night (Simon and Garfunkel).” This powerful use of a metaphor, personification, and symbolization in tandem shows a world in which a person cannot go without the influence of the media causing them to “split the night” or, in other words, no longer be in the world of darkness where they can communicate. Neon light, which represents the world with media, is later…show more content…
The sound of silence in this song symbolizes a person’s brain and their personal thoughts with meaning. The character in this song speaks of a dream he had in the first verse and in the lines that follow the effects the vision had, “And the vision that was planted in my brain/ Still remains/ Within the sound of silence (Simon and Garfunkel).” The lyricists purposely mention the metaphor “the vision that was planted in my brain” in the first verse before saying “within the sound of silence” to clue the listener into realizing the sound of silence throughout the song represents a person’s mind. These lines foreshadow the influence of media and emptiness into the character’s mind before it happens. The end of the next verse mentions the sound of silence as well after the character has his first encounter with the neon light, or the media. The character says that the brush with the media “touched the sound of silence (Simon and Garfunkel).” The lyricists cleverly included this line to indicate that the media has begun to taint people’s minds and thoughts. Next, the character is able to see the world for what it really is in the naked light and says, “No one dared/ Disturb the sound of silence (Simon and Garfunkel).” These lines reveal that the world has become so caught up in the images that appear on a screen that people have rejected their own
Open Document