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A Dream Deferred By Langston Hughes Analysis

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The True Meaning Behind “A Dream Deferred”

Every individual has a special dream or goal they wish to achieve, however in life there are many instances where dreams have to be postpone because of dilemmas in one’s life. Langston Hughes was a popular African-American poet, known for many of his literary pieces, most notably “A Dream Deferred”. In which he uses tone, symbolism, and imagery to convey his message about the hardships of African-Americans in the 1950s. As a young boy and throughout his life, Langston experienced countless instances of racial prejudice in school. However, this did not stop him from pursuing a career as a poet, and he successfully published 16 poetry books and is known as the greatest poet of the Harlem Renaissance.
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Langston used vivid analogies to symbolize all the negative aspects that can cause a dream to be postponed, such as reality. In fact, in the phrase “Does it stink like rotten meat?” (Hughes) the words “rotten meat” are meant to symbolize death. It is possible that Hughes uses this phrase because he is referring to African-Americans dying or being killed in the 1900s and therefore their dreams coming to an end. Additionally, in the quote “Or crust and sugar over-like a syrupy sweet?” (Hughes) the author one again uses symbolism to represent the postponement of a dream. When analyzing the quote, the word “crust and sugar over” it actually symbolizes something growing old, hence the word “crust” like an object left out for a long period of time. The symbolism utilized by Langston Hughes definitely helped the reader understand the theme of “postponing dreams due to reality” (Hughes). Although symbolism was very apparent in the poem and it helped convey the message clearly, so did the use of…show more content…
Ultimately, the theme of “A Dream Deferred” by Langston Hughes is that “dreams may be postponed to due reality and can be forgotten or destroyed if not acted upon”. He made this the overall theme of the poem because he personally, as an African-American had to overcome many negative obstacles throughout his life in order to fulfill his dreams. This poem was very brilliant and will impact any individual who reads it because it conveys such a powerful theme
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