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Langston Hughes Poetry Essay

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Introduction

The illustration of social class between White and Black Society, portrayed through Langston Hughes' poems Theme for English B, Democracy and I Too Sing America African American poet, Langston Hughes, exposes the history of the segregation of white and black society in America through his various collections of poetry. More specifically, he portrays the illustration of social class within his three poems Theme for English B, Democracy and I Too Sing America. The author writes from the perspective of an African-American exemplifying the emotion of wanting to belong. Hughes shows this separation through his use of literary features, themes and creation of atmosphere and tone throughout his poems. Hughes creates an atmosphere and tone to illustrate the 'social class' in early 20th century America. Democracy tells that "freedom will not come today, this year, nor ever" (Lines 1-2) portraying a lack of hope among the African-American society. It also shows the attitude of tiredness among Black society, how "they cannot live on tomorrow's bread" (Line 14) ...read more.

Middle

Hence, the creation of tone and atmosphere allows Hughes to effectively illustrate the differing social classes in his poems Theme for English B, Democracy and I Too Sing America. The segregation of White and Black society is portrayed through the use of literary features. Throughout the poems Theme for English B, Democracy and I Too Sing America, a prominent literary feature employed by Hughes to develop the reader's understanding of social class is figurative language. In Democracy, lines such as "I want freedom too" (Line 20) and "I have as much right" (Line 5) represent the isolation experienced by black Americans. The use of couplets, "dead.. bread" (Lines 13-14), "stand..land" (Lines 5-6) and "seed..need" (Lines 15-16) in Democracy , allows the poem to flow freely, allowing Hughes to emphasise the theme within. Imagery is displayed by the simile used in lines 15-16 when "freedom" is described as a "strong seed planted in great need" to accentuate the longing of wanting to belong to society. ...read more.

Conclusion

and mistreated but then of hope, hope for change when he "will be at the table" (Line 9) and accepted as part of white society. Democracy allows the reader to empathise with the African Americans, accentuated by the themes of longing, acceptance and tiredness. In lines 10-12 it is stated "I tire so from hearing people say tomorrow is another day" showing the loneliness experienced by African Americans. It is through these themes Hughes positions the reader to view the segregation of white and black society in America in his poems. In his poems, Theme for English B, Democracy and I Too Sing America, Langston Hughes exposes the segregation of white and black society throughout America's history. The illustration of social class is enhanced by the use of literary features, themes and creation of atmosphere and tone. The perspective chosen by the author, from the view of an African American, exemplifies the emotions portrayed within. Throughout these poems, Hughes positions the reader to view the unjust times African American's have faced throughout history and hardships they still face today. ...read more.

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