Song As The Art Of Persuasion
Persuasion is a type of communication which is meant to convince someone to follow or agree to a given statement or idea. These normally involve people of different parties who have different views about a given object, idea, or somebody. There are several means which are used to convey persuasive messages which include art work such as songs, poems, movies, video clips, paintings, and speeches among other methods. This paper seeks to examine how Bruno Mars’s song “Just the Way You Are” conveys a persuasive message.
Songs are a common form of entertainment in most cases but it is also a way of communication because it always carries a message. Song writers are always inclined to what they want their audience to get as a message from listening to their songs. Some will inform, others advice while others educate and others persuade people towards a given direction or to change their belief about something while others help other people to strengthen their belief about something.
Bruno Mars in his song is expressing how he feels about the girl he is singing to. From the lyrics of the song we get to understand that he is telling the girl that she is so beautiful that even if he was given a chance to change her, he would not change a thing because she looks just perfect. From this statement it seems that according to him, the girl did not hold a strong belief in her beauty. Bruno says that when she asks him if she was okay she would gladly tell her how beautiful she is the way she is.
Bruno uses the song to describe every part of the girl telling her how beautiful she was as if to persuade her that she is really beautiful. He says that her hair is perfect even without her tying and he mentions that he tells her about her beauty every day. This means that Bruno is trying to make it sink into the girl’s mind that she is really beautiful because in Bruno’s words he thinks that the girls doesn’t see the beauty in her “I know, I know when I compliment her she won’t believe me, and it’s so, it’s so sad to think that she don’t see what I see”.
However, he says that when she asks him how she looks he compliments her beauty by telling her that when he sees her face there is nothing that he can change because she is amazing just the way she is. He goes on to tell her that when she smiles the whole world stops and stares for a while because of her beauty. He further describes how he likes her lips and laugh although she may not like it but to him she is just perfect the way she is.
This song is persuasive because it tries to let the girl belief and see the beauty she has as Bruno describes it. He says that he is saddened by the fact that the girl he is describing does not see the beauty he is seeing in her. It means that what he telling her is for her to belief in her beauty and in accordance to persuasion, these arguments make the girl that the artiste is describing to have strong
These arguments are effective because in the video of the song “Just the You Are”, the girl seems to be contented and happy about the comments that the singer is using to compliment her. They are also effective because they describes the beauty of a girl in a manner that will see her have a strong belief in what she believed at first. Under normal circumstances, everyone will always see himself/herself as being beautiful but when you hear it from another person, it becomes more real and one gets to hold those beliefs strongly.
Among the persuasive theories I wish to align this art work with elaboration likelihood model where the persuasion is taken as a cognitive event which seeks to influence an individual based on what they get from the art. Dainton and Zelley (2005) argue that this theory sees persuasion as being primarily dependent on the prior beliefs of the individual in question about the idea being sold to the receiver. I find this theory applicable to my selected art because Bruno tells us that he is sad because the girl is praising her in terms of beauty does not see this herself. He says that he knows the girl may not like her lips and laugh as well as smile or rather she may not see it in the angle that Bruno is seeing but he tries to make her see it through his words.
From the arguments and discussion above, it is evident that what we may actually take for granted as just entertainment may not actually be only that because it portrays more than that. Most of the times we listen to or look at art work as form of entertainment without really thinking over it until we have a similar scenario as that which is portrayed in the work concerned work of art. However, when we have a clear understanding of the work, we tend to give it the attention it deserves and that is why we find people dedicating songs in most cases that go line in line with what people are going through. This is to persuade them to look at their scenarios in line with the message carried in the art work.
Bruno’s song is a perfect example of art work which seeks to persuade someone to see the beauty in another person without necessarily having to make adjustments on their looks. Someone who does not identify with this kind of a situation may not understand; say young children may only take this song for entertainment but someone who knows what such compliments may mean carry will give it a totally different meaning.
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