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Born to Be Wild

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 Lesson 1: Born to Be Wild

  • describing a document (be + -ing or -ing, articles, prepositions),
  • comparing two documents,
  • organizing ideas.
1. Search the internet and
  • look at the painting Easy Riders by Ian Guy (2009)  
  • listen to the song 'Born to Be Wild' by Steppenwolf (1969)
2. Complete the following recap with the appropriate words and verb forms.
In  the painting Easy Riders made by Ian Guy in 2009 and the song ‘Born to be Wild’ by the band Steppenwolf released in 1969, the figure of the biker embodies the American spirit of adventure and freedom.

, these two documents depict a group of bikers (ride)  in nature.  the painting, we can see a group of bikers  the foreground (head out)   a highway/road  sunrise/sunset throughout the desert (maybe in Arizona) with no objective in sight but  contemplate the beautiful American country. , in the song ‘Born to be wild, the singer invites the listeners to go for a ride: ‘Get your motor running’. Besides, the singer refers to many natural elements along their way such as ‘lightning’, ‘thunder’ and ‘the wind’ and claims that the biker is ‘nature’s true child’ showing that he is as free as the natural elements that surround him.

,the documents portray the bikers’ sense of adventure.  the painting, we are under the impression that the bikers don’t know where they (go)   which indicates their love of adventure. Besides, the artist implicitly draws a parallel between the bikers and the cowboys  the clouds  the top. They (ride)  in the same direction. The painter may want to pay homage to their ancestors.  the same manner, in the song ‘Easy Rider” the singer is ‘looking for adventure’ and expresses his desire to ‘take the world in a love embrace’. Besides, in  documents the bikers look/sound fearless/dauntless. In the painting, the artist implicitly compares the bikers to the Indians. In the song ‘Born to be wild’, the singer claims that the group of bikers will ride ‘whatever comes [their] way’. Their only wish is  ride freely across America without  worrying about where they’ll end up. They are motivated by the thrill of adventure.

, these two documents represent the bikers’ desire  freedom. In  documents, they seem to (ride)  without any final destination, free from social constraints and far from civilisation. The quest for freedom seems to be in their genes as the phrase ‘born to be wild’ suggests, it’s the true meaning of their existence. In the painting, the abandoned car on the side alludes to the fact that the bikers reject the American way of life. In the song, the singer even claims that he is free to the point that he will ‘never die’. This desire to escape into nature and outside society perfectly illustrates the counterculture movement which was in full swing in the U.S in the 1960s.

, we can say the biker embodies the American spirit in documents because of his love for adventure and freedom which is one of America’s core values. Besides, the presence of the American flag underlines the bikers’ love for their country. So, documents represent the figure of the biker as the true American in the 1960s.