'A double bed and a stalwart lover for sure'
The Smiths, the death of pop and the not so hidden injuries of class
in Why pamper life's complexities?
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The songs that The Smiths committed to vinyl underscore not only the essential virtue of being working class but also its abiding and essential indignities. Indeed, this distinct sense of ambivalence often appears in the same lyric. This is arguably the case in the track 'I Want The One I Can't Have', which features the remarkable lines: 'A double bed and a stalwart lover for sure / These are the riches of the poor'. The sense of personal humiliation and ontological damage that pervade Morrissey's singular lyrics clearly chime with the concerns that appear in the writings of the sociologist Richard Sennett. The words that Morrissey added to the incandescent music of Johnny Marr deal with the themes of disease, decay and despair. In the songbook of The Smiths, the abiding psychological scars that are the often concealed and unspoken wounds of bourgeois society begin to flail into public view.

Why pamper life's complexities?

Essays on The Smiths

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