Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Man in the Mirror
I believe that this song is about both changing personally and trying to change the world around you. While I believe this, it is maybe more compelling to think about the personal change of which Michael Jackson sings. When he says, "I've been a victim of a selfish kind of love," I can't help but be reminded of Jackson's tumultuous relationship with his father. His dad, Joe Jackson, was famous for being one of the most strict showbusiness parents ever, cruelly beating and berating his five sons if they did not perform in the way he saw fit. This selfish kind of love refers to Joe's self serving treatment of his kids, not allowing them to lead normal childhoods. Jackson also sings of a "willow deeply scarred." I believe that this is a reference to the permanent damage done to him from his childhood. At the end of the song is an interesting line that raises a few questions. He repeats "I'm gonna feel real good" many times. This seems as though he's trying to convince himself of that, but, as we have seen in the time since he made this song, his life's circumstances have been such that would make me think that his wishes haven't come true.