Analysis Of Harlem Renaissance Poetry

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(A Comparative Analysis of Harlem Renaissance Poetry)

The great philosopher Plato once orated: “Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back. PBS defines the the Harlem Renaissance a “Cultural, social, and artistic explosion that took place in Harlem between the end of World War I and the middle of the 1930s. During this period Harlem was a cultural center, drawing black writers, artists, musicians, photographers, poets, and scholars.” Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet.”Authors such as Langston Hughes, Lucille Clifton, and Colleen McElroy explore their cultural heritage through hard-hitting poetry.

Langston Hughes focuses a great deal on his …show more content…

The main observation readers could take from this poem is that the “lower” individual has to take care of and pick up after the white man. It is even hinted at that the poems the mother chant rival the alleged master of poetry’s own works.

Colleen McElroy uses her poetry to describe her culture and heritage in a very historical manner. McElroy’s poetry is very different from Hughes and Clifton in the sense that she uses so many references to her ancestors culture back in Africa. “My memory floats down a long narrow hall, A calabash of history. Grandpa stood high in Watusi shadows Where effigies of my ancestors are captured in Beatle tunes, And crowns never touch Bantu heads. My past is a slender dancer reflected briefly Like a leopard in fingers of fire. The future Dahomey is a house of 16 doors, the totem of Burundi counts 17 warriors-- In reverse generations. While I cling to one stray Seminole. My thoughts grow thin in the urge to travel beyond Grandma’s tale. Of why cat fur id for kitten britches; Past the wrought iron rail of first stairs In baby white shoes, To Ashanti mysteries and rituals.” The use of African language and the names of tribes paint a geographical image that readers can begin to follow. Heritage is more than following the lineage of a people, the land in which they live is equally as involved. This ethnic and topographical following of these people gives her Clifton’s poetry the breath

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