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Commentary On "I,Too, Sing America" By Langston Hughes

854 words - 3 pages

During the 1960's in America, many African Americans were suppressed and segregated due to their racial differences and the fact that they were descendants of slaves. Therefore, many blacks like Langston Hughes, recognized that although difference in race, all Americans should be treated equally and with dignity. Hence, they expressed their feelings of sufferings, helplessness, isolation and yearnings for hope through different artistic ways, like poetry, art, and music, which also marks the birth of their racial consciousness and self- conception, and help them learn to have racial pride in themselves. Now let us explore Hughe's "I, too, Sing America" through his use of different literary devices, including imagery, symbols, tone, structure and rhythm.Imagery is an essential element adding to the poem's effectiveness, and in this poem he uses a lot of domestic images, creating an account of the experiences of a black servant serving a wealthy white family. In the second line, Hughes created an image of a black man: "I am the darker brother", which symbolizes all the blacks in America. Furthermore in the third line: "They send me to eat in the kitchen" creates an image of him being oppressed. The image of eating often symbolizes strength and being healthy, implying that black people in general are strong-willed and growing in power and equality. Moreover, the image of a kitchen represents repression, because most Kitchens are hidden much like the suffering of African Americans. Lastly in line nine, there is an image of a table: "I'll be at the table", representing equality with whites and being as superior as them, it also signifies pride and dignity in their black identity because the table is high above the floor.The poem's use of diction is also significant to create a long lasting impression in the reader's mind. First of all in line two he described the black servant as a "dark brother" instead of a "black servant". His use of "dark" instead of "black" is more effective because "black" usually represent evil and death which undermines the race of Black Americans, and dark is healthier because it resembles a tan skin. Furthermore, "brother" symbolizes family and acceptances, meaning they are equal. Moreover, the use of "companion" in line four creates a contrast between the black servant and the white people, emphasizing the fact that the blacks are lonely, isolated and helpless while the whites were strong and dominating. Lastly, the choice of "tomorrow" also symbolizes the future of the blacks, that they will be just as...

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