What does Holidays in the Sun mean?

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Sex Pistols: Holidays in the Sun Meaning


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Song Released: 1977

Holidays in the Sun Lyrics

A Cheap holiday in other peoples misery!

I don't wanna holiday in the sun
I wanna go to new Belsen
I wanna see some history
'Cause now i got a reasonable economy

Now I got a reason, now I got a reason
Now I got a reason and I'm still...

  1. anonymous
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    Feb 27th report

    The Sex Pistols most political song. Talks about flirting with communism, probably seeing a propaganda film (the 2 inch wall), and finding it repulsive. But now that Great Britain has Thatcher's "reasonable economy" he finds himself hating both sides of the cold war. I love the Clash as well as the Sex Pistols, but the Sex Pistols were wiser in never believing in utopian dreams as a reaction to right wing extremism. I think the line I wanna see some history is a reference to Marxist claims that communism was historically determined to be the next phase of political evolution.

  2. Reverend_Mother
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    Sep 30th 2020 report

    At the time this was written a stupid woman from the left wing had an article in the news saying she didn’t want a ‘holiday in the sun’ but wanted something with more meaning. She then wrote that she wanted to visit the Bergen Belsen or similar death camp. She meant the type of historical museum. John Lyndon wrote these lyrics after reading this. It was extreme Satire at the type of political idiot who wants to holiday in someone else’s ‘misery’ and is his expression of pure human disgust at the idea of a horrific death camp becoming a holiday destination. I think the same is true of the reference to the Berlin Wall, that he thought that people could only holiday to the wall from the western side as if you did from the eastern side you would be machine gunned.

    The satire is very deep dark stuff. I believe it is john’s horror at such dreadful places becoming like part of the entertainment industry.

    I think it was John the human being saying ‘for fuck sake go to ‘benidorm’

  3. anonymous
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    Jun 25th 2014 report

    That line I was waiting for the communist call always stumps me. But the rest is pretty straight forward, Johnny wanted a holiday in london but he couldn't afford it so he went to a place where western people can easily exploit the people on the east, because everything is cheap their compared to the western countries for tourists. And once he gets there he realises it's the same expolited country as england is, so there's no difference. He's looking at communist guard and a communist guard is looking at him and they realise they are the same but still different all because of silly shit as which is the better. The east or the west. *sighs* I want a holiday in the sun

  4. anonymous
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    Apr 5th 2011 report

    It's a mixture I think
    stupid holidays in dictatorships
    oposed by the armytours
    and westberlin
    big "prisoncamp" surrounded by a very very conservative regime(and the wall of cause)
    and wellguarded with watchtowers
    with the squater/punkscene distrikt right at the wall
    british, amerikan, french soldiers were there as well
    they even made a manouver inside this district.
    It was somehow a realy strange live
    on the deklared and prepared ww3 batlefield
    bowie and iggy lived there to
    so the set must have been familiar

    song always reminds me at those time

  5. anonymous
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    Jan 12th 2011 report

    It is about British Military adventures. Soldiers sent around the world to fight wars that have no really meaning.
    (hence the marching boots at the beginning of the studio version and the referances to world war 3 and the Berlin War)

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  6. anonymous
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    Feb 3rd 2007 report

    The Sex Pistols, to me, has always been about pissing people off and messing with their heads and at the time they did this track in the 70's when everyone was painfully Anti-Communist going on stage and saying 'I was waiting for the Communist call' was outragous. As to the meaning, I think Rotten or whoever wrote the track was trying to portray himself as a fascious and a communist trying to get 'over the Berlin wall' to infect everyone else, thus doing what he wanted to do with the song: scare people and fuck with their heads.

  7. anonymous
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    Jun 23rd 2006 report

    Holidays in the Sun is about a tourism company putting up adverts for expensive vacations (holidays) in the poorest sections of London and other British cities and how much better things would be on the "other" side of the wall.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  8. anonymous
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    Feb 18th 2006 report

    Yeah, I've never even HEARD this song, but due to what I've learned in history, he's obviously talking about Cold-War era Iron Curtain Germany. Because West Germany's economy (due to hefty US aid) recovered after the war (WWII) and East Germany's didn't due to communist Soviet domination. And a lot wanted to get back together again... which of course, eventually happened, in like 1989.

    Also, new Belsen is probably a ref. To Bergen-Belsen, the notorious nazi concentration camp in WWII. Which might have been in East Germany.

  9. jusplainjesse
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    Jul 27th 2005 report

    This song is about the Berlin Wall. Did I really have to say that? I mean...really...hw many times does he say "Berlin Wall" in the song. There is no hidden meaning, it's really about the Berlin Wall.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway

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