(Literary analysis of Langston Hughes poems Rivers, Too, Dreams, and Refugee.) How far are you willing to fight to keep all the rights you have right now? Now imagine those right never belonged to you but applied to everyone else, is that fair? Yes, be treated as lesser by everyone else with the great rights you don’t have. No, make a stand in any way possible till you get those right to be equal.In a article online it states, “Hughes never did abandon the language of racial protest; a revealing measure of his influence may be found in famous works whose titles are themselves quotations from his poems.” (Sundquist). Langston Hughes was a very famous African American that wrote about the problem that African Americans faced in the Harlem Renaissance. The Harlem Renaissance was a time where African American culture started to flourish and be appreciated for the work and talent that they have. Hughes challenged racism with his poems and every poem has a different point of view of what African Americans were going through and fight for. Langston Hughes’s poems Rivers, Too, Dreams, and Refugee each have a clear message in them about civil rights for African Americans. Rivers by Langston Hughes sets in a troubling mood and message of the struggle African Americans had to face while they were in slavery and the freedom Abe Lincoln got for them.The poem starts out talking about seeing many rivers. After then hughes states many different river that had slavery
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Langston Hughes is probably the most influential and remembered poet of the Harlem Renaissance. Hughes writes about how the African-American people have been all over the world. In “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” he talks about them bathing in the Euphrates, building huts by the Congo, and singing of the Mississippi. I think that this poem is showing how these people are everywhere. In America we act as if they are lesser, but he is saying to the white people, look at all my race has accomplished. For example, “We” built the pyramids, and we have been around as long as these rivers. This poem is meant to be positive. It
Langston Hughes was the leading voice of African American people in his time, speaking through his poetry to represent blacks. His Influence through his poems are seen widely not just by blacks but by those who enjoy poetry in other races and social classes. Hughes poems, Harlem, The Negro speaks of rivers, Theme for English B, and Negro are great examples of his output for the racial inequality between the blacks and whites. The relationship between whites and blacks are rooted in America's history for the good and the bad. Hughes poems bring the history at large and present them in a proud manner. The injustice that blacks face because of their history of once being in bondage is something they are constantly reminded and ridiculed for but must overcome and bring to light that the thoughts of slavery and inequality will be a lesson and something to remember for a different future where that kind of prejudice is not found so widely.
“The history for Blacks in America starts at slavery,” the further I ponder this statement from my friend Joe, a navy veteran, the more I do not believe it to be true. Today many Blacks in America do not remember stories of their African heritage. Although, they may not know their African history, it does exist, and they did originate from Africa. So, their history does not start at slavery. In a recorded interview, Langston Hughes says he wrote the poem, “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” in 1920, after he completed high school. Hughes also credits his source of inspiration to the Mississippi river which he passed, while on the train, to visit his father in Mexico. He acknowledged what the Mississippi symbolized to Negro people and how it was linked
Langston Hughes clearly connects with a wide range of audiences through the simplicity that surrounds his poetry. The beauty of this manner in which he wrote his poetry, is that it grasp people by illustrating his narratives of the common lifestyles experienced by the current American generation. His art form expresses certain questionable ideologies of life and exposes to the audience what it takes to fully comprehend what being an American truly means. Each individual poem describes and illustrates the strength and hardships the African American community was experiencing. Through his literature art form of poetry, Hughes was able to convey the common assertions of
A huddle of horns And a tinkle of glass A note Handed down from Marcus to Malcolm To a brother Too bad and too cool to give his name. Sometimes despair Makes the stoops shudder Sometimes there are endless depths of pain Singing a capella on street corners
The poem ?The Negro Speaks of Rivers? by Langston Hughes contains many symbolic meanings about the identity of African Americans. Throughout the poem Hughes uses metaphorical statements to suggest to the reader what the soul of the African American has been through. The symbols of the old rivers from which the African American ideal has risen can be interpreted in many different ways. They represent the birth and growth of the African American culture, and some of the most significant moments of their past. The words written in this poem represent the pride and knowledge of a group of outstanding people.
Langston Hughes is an extremely successful and well known black writer who emerged from the Harlem Renaissance (“Langston Hughes” 792). He is recognized for his poetry and like many other writers from the Harlem Renaissance, lived most of his life outside of Harlem (“Langston Hughes” 792). His personal experiences and opinions inspire his writing intricately. Unlike other writers of his time, Hughes expresses his discontent with black oppression and focuses on the hardships of his people. Hughes’ heartfelt concern for his people’s struggle evokes the reader’s emotion. His appreciation for black music and culture is evident in his work as well. Langston Hughes is a complex poet whose profound works provide insight into all aspects of black
Langston Hughes has showed the happiness and pain of the African American struggles in his poetry and plays. Throughout the Harlem Reniassance Langston wrote 800 poems and was one of the most infuencal people in black history. His lyrical jazz flow gave is poems and short stories a creative artistic style to tell his story. He touched and influence many artists past, present, and future. In his poems and stories he taught African Americans to be proud of who they are and where they come from.
A poem by Hughes that really stands out to me is Let America Be America Again. He attacks the notion that America is “for the free”, but does so through powerful, metaphoric language. “I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart; I am the negro bearing slavery’s scars; I am the red man driven from the land…” I find this specific passage stands out to me because Hughes takes an opportunity in his poem to expose how life was for others during the early 1900s beyond just the blacks in America. I found Hughes opens my mind to the idea that not only were blacks being extremely mistreated, but so were the poor whites, and Native Americans at this time as well were STILL being taken advantage of. I believe when most people think of the slavery era, we tend to forget that the true enemy of this time were rich whites (not all, but the general idea). Even looking at this piece by Hughes as a whole, I find that he writes his poetry by what he has felt himself and his own personal experiences. Hughes writes with the sole purpose of sharing his experiences with others, and for the generations that will
In Langston Hughes' poem, "The Negro Speaks of Rivers", he examines some of the roles that blacks have played throughout history. Ultimately, the poem asserts that in every one of these aspects the black people have been exploited and made to suffer, mostly at the hands of white people. The poem is written entirely in first person, so there is a very personal tone, even though the speaker symbolizes the entire black race. The examples of each role cited in the poem are very specific, but they allude to greater indignities, relying on the readers' general knowledge of world history. To convey the injustice that has taken place, Hughes utilizes the symbolism of the
Langston Hughes was an African American writer who took the literary world by storm in the twentieth century. Hughes was known for incorporating African American culture into his poems and plays. Langston Hughes did this so much so that per, "Masterplots II: African American Literature" he was "…recognized as the unofficial poet laureate of the African American urban experience…" (Niemi). Hughes has written several poems in his career. Most of them have a theme of racial pride incorporated somewhere in the poems. By analyzing Langston Hughes's writings, it can be inferred that the poems "The Negro Speaks of Rivers", "Negro" and "I, Too" all have the theme of racial pride.
Explication of “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” The poem “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” by Langston Hughes hinges on the premise of one man having the collective experience of centuries of African and African American history. The Speaker reflects many of these experiences from freedom to slavery and as he reflects it becomes clear the experiences are not exclusively his but those of his ancestors. The poem begins by introducing its focus on rivers and we begin to see the formation of 3 ‘sections’.
In the poem “The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” Langston Hughes employs the repetition of important sentences, the allusion to the rivers in history, and the imagery and description of the rivers to express that African Americans should be respected for their history. Langston Hughes repeat himself in several sentences, especially in the beginning and the end. After establishing a connection between his soul and the ancient rivers, at the end of the poem, he restated, “My soul has grown deep like the rivers.” He claimed that his soul is “like the rivers”, showing that the culture and history carried by the important rivers are flowing in him changing him in a meaningful way. The rivers he introduced throughout the poem included the Euphrates, the
According to Biography, James Mercer Langston Hughes is considered to be an African American poet who is college educated and comes from a middle-class family (Langston Hughes Biography). He attended college in New York City and became influential during the Harlem Renaissance (Langston Hughes Biography). Although Hughes was a talented writer, he faced some challenges early on and it was stated that his “early work was roundly criticized by many black intellectuals for portraying what they thought to be an unattractive view of black life” (Langston Hughes. American Poet). They believed that his work helps the spread the stereotypes of African Americans. “Hughes, more than any other black poet or writer, recorded faithfully the nuances of black life and its frustrations” (Langston Hughes. American Poet). Langston Hughes’s poems “The Negro Mother”, “Let America be America Again” and “The Weary Blues” were influenced by his life during the Harlem Renaissance and the racial inequality experienced in the late 1920s through the 1960s.
In the poem The Negro Speaks of Rivers by Langston Hughes as it depicts History of Slavery and Freedom by telling the story of each rivers where the blacks were being enslaved. Euphrates, Congo, Nile and Mississippi were all symbolism in the poem of how they were treated. There is a historical reference to Abraham Lincoln going to New Orleans which also tells us about when he first saw slavery and reminds us that he was the one who fought against slavery.