The Visitors (album) Oct 11, 2020 7:42:32 GMT
Post by jj on Oct 11, 2020 7:42:32 GMT
"To crack up" simply means "to lose one's mind", "to go insane". I don't know why Hazel Dean wants to include additional meanings and add such a redundant detail as insane asylums to what is a very straightforward situation described in Bjorn's lyrics here. The song simply illustrates the anguish and paranoia that many dissidents in Eastern Europe and Russia were feeling at the time, given what was happening, and had happened, to other dissidents before them: namely a knock on the door in the middle of the night by their totalitarian countries' secret police, being arrested, bundled into a car, and then incarcerated without trial, sometimes even tortured by these authorities after their arrest, so these dissidents would spill names of other dissidents.
If one night in, say, Poland, circa 1981, you, a Polish dissident, held a secret meeting with other dissidents in your house to discuss ways to bring about more freedom and democracy to your country, and then suddenly, during this meeting, around 2am, all huddled together in your drawing room whispering about achieving freedom, you heard a loud knock on your door and voices outside, your heart would definitely start racing, and you'd expect the worst. You always knew this might happen - it isn't completely unexpected, you knew this had happened before to many other dissidents in the past, people who were now in prison or probably even dead, either executed or who'd mysteriously "disappeared", never to be seen or heard from again. This was the situation in Russia and many other communist countries at the time.
And this is the situation described in "The Visitors". It's pretty straightforward! Adding anything else to it like Hazel Dean does about asylums is completely unnecessary. The song simply describes the fear experienced by political opponents in a totalitarian country, the potentially dangerous situation in which these people found themselves when they met secretly to discuss ways to overthrow their oppressive governments, and their fear and paranoia about being caught by these governments' authorities, as many had already been before them.