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Alexandra Williams . Harlem Renaissance . Dr. Lean’Tin

Good Essays
Alexandra Williams
Harlem Renaissance
Dr. Lean’tin Bracks
March 1, 2017

Langston Hughes “I Too”

Langston Hughes, born February 1,1902 was a writer and a leader of the Harlem Renaissance era. Hughes was one who had a very firm revolutionary back groud even agreeing with the idea of communism as a segregation alternative. This theme showed up throughout his works. Often publishing revolutionary work and keeping certain associations is where Hughes began to receive backlash as an artist.
The Harlem Renaissance was a cultural, artistic and social movement that took place in Harlem NY. Harlem became the of a movement bringing African American all around artists, as well as scholars to Harlem. This became known as “The negro movement.”
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But this still had no effect on Jim Crow and its race barriers. The Renaissance brought down the racial tension some, but racial attitudes among whites were still there. Reinforcing race pride among the African American community.
“I Too” is a poem written and published in the Harlem Renaissance Era. Hughes, being one of the most prominent writers of the time, wrote 5 metaphorical stanzas that specifically capture several of themes of the relationship of African- Americans in comparison to White- American culture and society, these chosen themes show Hughes’ recognition of the pain in segregation and difficulty of the situation at the time.
Hughes wrote “I Too” as a response to Walt Whitman’s poem written in 1867, in which Whitman plays out several Americans who are all making up the song of America. Hughes is responding because as it was a common theme of the time to exclude the African American from the concept of community he was trying to make it clear that blacks too contribute to the greatness of American society.
Hughes uses the word "I" several times throughout his poem. This representing not only him, but the voice of the Black community. The title of this piece has levels to it a straightforward boldness. In another level when you see the word “Too” you are also thinking secondary. Secondary for our race which he will make clear soon after usually carries a sense of inferiority with it. Just as Dubois wrote in The Souls of Black
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