Lorde’s “Tennis Court” Song is about the French Revolution

It’s probably a coincidence that this song came on the radio while I was listening on my way to the library on Bastille Day. OR WAS IT. I am 99% sure that this song is all about the French Revolution, most obviously the tennis court oath:

Let's go down to the tennis court and talk it out

Let’s go down to the tennis court and talk it out

I mean, really, what ELSE could that lyric be referring to? In 1789, Louis XVI was broke, in no small part because of France’s involvement with the American War for Independence, so he called the Estates General, an advisory body made up of nobles, clergy, and commoners. The Estates General was a purely advisory body, and traditionally each of the groups had met and advised the king separately, but the 3rd Estate, the Commons (i.e. 99% of France), wasn’t taking that shit anymore. In protest, they refused to do any work until the others agreed to meet all together. The stalemate went on for weeks, until one day the Third Estate found their traditional meeting room locked. Coincidence… OR ROYAL PLOT? They filed on down to a tennis court and took an oath to not leave until they’d given France a Constitution. A little act of Englightenment-style rebellion that basically led to this:

Because I'm doin' this for the thrill of it, killin' it

Because I’m doin’ this for the thrill of it, killin’ it

And then later:

Getting caught's half of the trip though, isn't it?  I fall apart with all my heart

Getting caught’s half of the trip though, isn’t it?
I fall apart with all my heart

Think about it.

Baby, be the class clown

Baby, be the class clown

I'll be the beauty queen in tears

I’ll be the beauty queen in tears

Everything's cool when we're all in line for the throne

Everything’s cool when we’re all in line for the throne

But I know it's not forever

But I know it’s not forever

Open your eyes, comrades!

One response to “Lorde’s “Tennis Court” Song is about the French Revolution”

  1. mom ladd says:

    Oh My Gosh! So clear now…Thank you Trish.

Site and contents are © 2009-2017 Patricia Ladd, all rights reserved. | Admin Login | Design by Steven Wiggins.