The Harlem Renaissance was a “outpouring of writing, music, and social criticism” (Baker, 1987) aimed at destroying the ever-present racism of the 1920s. Langston Hughes, an artist of the Harlem Renaissance, was a big contributor to change, inspiring those of his own time and later on to stand up for African American rights. Penning the 1926 manifesto The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain, Hughes encapsulated the thoughts of Harlem, and urged African Americans to be proud of their own culture, “without fear or shame” (Hughes in Bernard, 2011).
Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Zora Neale Hurston, Marcus Garvey, AaronDouglas PART 2: POETRY IN MOTION: Langston Hughes was a famous Harlem Renaissance poet. Like others, he developed themes that connected the African-American heritage to the present. The website for this activity is: https://studies.tripod.com/ENGL2328/negro_speaks_rivers.htm 1. How old was Langston Hughes when he wrote this poem “Negro Speaks of Rivers” ?
Langston Hughes uses imagery in his poems in order to convey his ideas of hardships and difficulty people dealt with at his time. For example in the poem “The Backlash Blues” Hughes writes, “You give me second class houses/Seconds class schools/ Do you think colored folks/Are just second class fools?” (lines 4-8).
It causes the reader to think about how if a dream for a better life is pushed aside, it will eventually become old and be forgotten. The author then includes this line "Or fester like a sore-" (4), which is used to make the reader visualize a wound that has gone
An example of the author conveying the theme of community in this work is, “I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went down to New Orleans, and I’ve seen its muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset.” This line from the poem shows how the figurative language describes the dark past of African American History and how people have been there to see its dark past and how it’s blossoming into a bright future. The Negro Speaks of Rivers is yet another one of the many works from the Harlem Renaissance that conveys the importance of working
Langston Hughes once said, “Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly”. What Langston Hughes is trying to convey is that a person who does not dream freely will be as impaired as a bird who cannot fly. In other words, this person will never reach his dream, let alone get from point A to point B. In Lorraine Hansberry’s play, A Raisin in the Sun, she attempts to tell readers the story of an African American family who similarly are having troubles fulfilling their dreams. Throughout the course of the play Hansberry utilizes historical facts alongside with personal opinion to convey to her readers the argument that people can still dream and hope despite their struggles.
Being from Mississippi, Hughes would have been familiar with the Mississippi River and this may partly explain why more emphasis is placed on the details of this river than any of the others. The author’s description of the Mississippi River contains more words than any other line in the poem. The line reads “I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went down to New Orleans, and I’ve seen its muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset” (7). This reference to President Abraham Lincoln, the great emancipator, hints at the theme of African American freedom as another connection to Langston Hughes’ present day struggle with finding freedom as an artist in a society that confined the lives of African Americans. The importance of this
Poems can be analyzed in various ways ranging from their complexity to the emotions they convey to readers. The poems, “The Weary Blues” by Langston Hughes and “The Harlem Dancer” by Claude McKay will be analyzed based on their similarities and differences to name a few. The poems may describe different events; however the overall connection between the two can be identified by readers with deeper reading. Comparisons between the poems may easier to analyze and identify compared to the contrasts based on the reader’s perception. Overall, the concept and much more will reveal how the poems are connected and special in their own way.
The culture of most blacks was unwanted during this time. For this reason Hughes desired to make a change and illustrate such cultural identities in his poems. In doing this he caused a shift in ideas among all people. Although the change didn’t happen immediately it did eventually occur. With that said the African American people were given less of an opportunity at jobs, schooling, and most importantly culture.
Langston Hughes uses images of oppression to reveal a deeper truth about the way minorities have been treated in America. He uses his poems to bring into question some of Walt Whitman’s poems that indirectly state that all things are great, that all persons are one people in America, which Hughes claims is false because of all the racist views and oppression that people face from the people America. This oppression is then used to keep the minorities from Walt Whitman in his poem, “Song of Myself”, talks about the connection between all people, how we are family and are brothers and sisters who all share common bonds. He says, “ And I know that the spirit of God is the brother of my own,/ And that all the men ever born are also my brothers,
Therefore, the whole theme about this poem is everything is a mystery and a question and it will take years to potentially to find an answer. To begin, Langston shows in his first stanza his extreme miss for Africa and how much his history as an African American man has changed ever since his ancestors are officially part of the United states. Langston begins stating “ So long, So far away Is Africa. Not even memories alive Save those that history books create.” Langston explains how
Similarly, Hughes uses grotesque imagery to emphasize the decay of a forgotten idea. However, said forgotten idea can be interpreted as more than a concept when the time period is taken into account. Through analysis, it’s possible to construe Hughes’s dream as a person or society. In the line “Or fester like a sore-- And then run?” (Hughes 4), imagery is used to conjure the picture of a blister on human skin.
In the poem “The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” Langton Hughes uses rhetorical devices such as allusion and imagery to develop the theme of the poem. Starting in stanzas four to six, Langston uses four very famous rivers to trace back on where it all began. Throughout these stanzas he develops allusion because he traces back on to history and state that everyone are historically equal. “My soul has grown deep like the rivers.
Poems are tools used to demonstrate dissatisfaction. The play A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry leads by foreshadowing its theme of crushed dreams by starting with the poem A Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes. The play follows an African-American family in 1950s Chicago, consisting of protagonist Walter Lee Younger, his son Travis, his wife and Travis’ mother Ruth, sister Beneatha, and mother/grandmother Lena, called simply “Mama” in the play. Walter is ambitious and wants to move out of his small and run-down home and find a better job than a chauffeur for the kind of man he wishes he could be.
Langston Hughes was an American poem born in the early nineteen hundreds, who became known as the leader of the Harlem Renaissance. He published many poems that brought light to the life of people of color in the twentieth century. There are three poems that the speakers are used to portray three major themes of each poem. Racism, the American Dream, and Hopes are all the major themes that Hughes uses to highlight the average life of a person of color. Theme for English B,” “Harlem,” and “Let America Be America Again” were three of Hughes’s poems that was selected to underline the themes.