Time And Place In Langston Hughes' Poetry

1233 words - 5 pages

In many different ways, the time periods affects us all. In Langston Hughes poem’s Dreams, My People and Oppression all the themes are based on the time period and the surrounding events. In the poem Dreams he expresses that we need to hold onto our dreams. In My People he expresses his love and appreciation for his people. Lastly, in the poem Oppression he expresses the sorrow and pain of African Americans. By analyzing the themes, tone and figurative language of these poems the reader will be able to see that time periods and there surrounding events affects people in everything they do.
Langston Hughes’ poem Dream is a poem based on holding onto one’s dream. The speaker of this poem is trying to convey a message to the reader that will inspire them to hold onto what they believe in, because if they don’t, "Life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly (Hughes, 3-4)." This in other words means, life will be worthless and pointless. If you give up on everything that can help you succeed or encourage you to make it to the next day, why are you living? The tone of this poem is inspirational and hopeful. For example, by the speaker is telling us how we will feel in advance to us giving up our dreams, it encourages the reader to hold on to their dreams, hope and aspiration.
There are many examples of figurative language associated with this poem, metaphors being one of them. For, example Hughes says "life is a barren field frozen with snow tone (Hughes 7).” In this stanza the speaker is comparing life itself to a frozen barren field. Another element of this poem is the theme. This poem teaches us we should hold onto our dreams forever.
My People is a poem about the speaker being proud of his people. His people are happy, joyful and full of pride so this excites him. The speaker’s tone of this poem is very happy and excited. In every line the speaker is expressing to the reader that he is delighted because his people are happy. “The night is beautiful, so the faces of my people (Hughes 1).” Throughout the whole poem, the speaker is using metaphors to compare his ‘people’ to things that brighten up the world. “The night, the stars and the sun (Hughes 1-5).” All of these are examples of symbols, as well as metaphors. For example, stars shine through the night. The night is dark, can be unhappy and discouraging at times. And the sun is a beam of light. In this poem the stars, and the sun symbolize his people surpass during the trying time there in. He is trying to inform us the readers that his people are bright and intelligent and that we shouldn’t treat them unequally just because of their complexion. At the end of the day, we all need each other to get through.
The poem Oppression talks about people’s hopes being killed from insecurities and depression, but one day when they let go of the burden holding them back they can live again. “Now dreams are not available to the dreamers, nor songs to the singers (Hughes...

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