Morrissey A-Z: "(The) Teachers Are Afraid of the Pupils"

Eldritch

Well-Known Member
This live version (below) clocks 5:57 and works, makes me wonder if Lillywhite and band extended the album version because
they didn’t have much material for the album(?).
My theory is that Morrissey just wanted to open and end the album with ten-minute songs, so both songs were stretched to fit that description. After all the lyrics in Southpaw end way before the five minute mark, so the second half is like a totally different track. But it works much better than the needlessly protrected end of Teachers.
 

Eldritch

Well-Known Member
Keep this opener and Southpaw as the closer and have mostly different songs in-between.... and Southpaw Grammer could've been a top 3 solo album.
My thoughts exactly. Two very long and experimental songs bookending six brash rock songs would have been a great formula for an album, but in my books only Reader Meet Author and reservedly Boy Racer are good enought to fit that bill. Nobody Loves You is my favourite of the whole era and You Must Please Remember passes muster too. You Should Have Been Nice to Me could be the fifth track.
 
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Eldritch

Well-Known Member
It's a song I generally like (stupidly long instrumental aside), but it's one I find hard to read - I can never quite tell whether he is being sympathetic towards teachers or criticising them. Is it just me?
Where do you hear criticism in the song? Reading the lyrics now I think it's clear that M. sympathizes with the teachers who are being harassed by both the pupils and their parents.
 

gordyboy9

rip roaring,free scoring,never boring, celtic.
Ironically, however, the "ouch,iv cracked a rib" line is one that you use repeatedly.

I meant it as a serious question, though. Are you not a cleaner? Caretaker, perhaps? I'm trying to think of what role you might competently perform in a school; one that wouldn't require you to be familiar with even elementary spelling or punctuation.
i service the teachers.
 

gordyboy9

rip roaring,free scoring,never boring, celtic.
Ah, dinner lady in staff canteen then?
Needle & cotton required for that side-splitter :lbf:
these dinner ladies need whisked off their feet,could butter them up with my patter,really should take my eyes off their perfect peaks,it might boil down to this.
 

skull

Active Member
Very good, creepy song. A bit long, of course, and Morrissey should have added some words, as is the case for many songs on Southpaw. I like it. Had it finished at 7 minutes, it would have been a relief.
 

DrStatham

Active Member
Where do you hear criticism in the song? Reading the lyrics now I think it's clear that M. sympathizes with the teachers who are being harassed by both the pupils and their parents.
'But when your profession
Is humiliation'
Could be interpreted two ways - either it is humiliating for the teacher, or their profession involves humiliating others (ie pupils).
The chorus is a big one, it could either be a statement or a threat.

There is definitely some sympathy there, but one interpretation of the lyrics as a whole is that he is simply explaining the origin of the behaviour from teachers he has criticised in the past. That is, he is saying teachers act hatefully simply because they are scared. It is probably M's history of anti-teacher statements and songs that make me read into it in that way, but I can't help but hear the chorus and wonder whether M is quoting or saying.
 

Ketamine Sun

HANG THEM HIGH VERONICA
'But when your profession
Is humiliation'
Could be interpreted two ways - either it is humiliating for the teacher, or their profession involves humiliating others (ie pupils).
The chorus is a big one, it could either be a statement or a threat.

There is definitely some sympathy there, but one interpretation of the lyrics as a whole is that he is simply explaining the origin of the behaviour from teachers he has criticised in the past. That is, he is saying teachers act hatefully simply because they are scared. It is probably M's history of anti-teacher statements and songs that make me read into it in that way, but I can't help but hear the chorus and wonder whether M is quoting or saying.

Interesting. Wonder if the sample taken from the film ‘Eight o’clock Walk’ sheds any light on M’s angle?
I haven’t seen the film nor can I decipher the sample of dialogue used, but the main character in the film is falsely accused and put on trial for killing a child.

 

DrStatham

Active Member
Interesting. Wonder if the sample taken from the film ‘Eight o’clock Walk’ sheds any light on M’s angle?
I haven’t seen the film nor can I decipher the sample of dialogue used, but the main character in the film is falsely accused and put on trial for killing a child.

Apparently the quoted lines are:
'I'm very glad the spring has come
The sun shines out so bright
All the birds that are on the trees
Are singing for delight'

Like you I could never decipher the sampled audio so I haven't thought about it before, but I am a little lost when trying to work out the relevance to the song as a whole. Perhaps the context of where those lines fit into the film would help.
 
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