Langston Hughes Critical Essays

Langston Hughes Critical Essays-34
Hughes's interest in and innovative use of musical forms, such as blues and jazz, is explored with particular attention to their role in African-American culture, as well as their use by Hughes to forge an alternative to dominant modes of expression within the modernist canon." Begins with a discussion of "The Negro Speaks of Rivers." Lecture 15 of Professor Hammer's class at Yale, English 310: Modern Poetry, Spring 2007. "'We, Too, Rise with You': Recovering Langston Hughes's African Turn 1954-1960." Kim explores Hughes's political poetry, contending that in the 1950s, "Hughes not only participated in but sought to lead the broader radicalization of the US black political imagination." 41, 3 (Fall 2007) [Questia subscription service]. "The Riffs, Runs, Breaks, and Distortions of the Music of a Community in Transition": Redefining African American Modernism and the Jazz Aesthetic in Langston Hughes's 'Montage of a Dream Deferred' and 'Ask Your Mama.' 51, 4 (Autumn 1999) pp 324-44 [preview or purchase at jstor]. "'I've Wrestled with Them all My Life': Langston Hughes's Tambourines to Glory." On Langston Hughes's treatment of religious subjects. "'Like a Violin for the Wind to Play': Lyrical Approaches to Lynching by Hughes, Du Bois, and Toomer" [and W. Draft of Langston Hughes's "Ballad of Booker T." [Booker T."Langston Hughes." Brief introduction, reliable text for some of Hughes's most famous poems, other poets of the Harlem Renaissance. "Langston Hughes." Encyclopedia-type introduction to the poet's themes, style, and techniques, a biography, and some of his best known poems. "Facing racism every day with the Great Depression looming, Hughes wrote these political poems on the inside covers of a book." 6, 1 (Spring 1979) pp 55-63 [preview or purchase, for ! Washington] A digital image of the Langston Hughes's typescript, with his autograph revisions, for "Ballad of Booker T." The Langston Hughes Collection at the Library of Congress. From a centennial symposium on Langston Hughes, streaming audio files of symposium lectures: the keynote address by Dr.As a result, neither his novels nor his autobiographies have met with abundant critical analysis, much less acclaim.

Having lived in Mexico for more than a year as a teenager, by 1929 Hughes had also visited West Africa, France (where he spent several months), and Italy.

Extended trips to Haiti, Cuba, the Soviet Union, and Spain followed, as did translations of his poems into Spanish, German, French, Russian, and many other languages.

In his poem “The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” Hughes compares his knowledge of his people’s past with the depth of a river.

The lines “I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older than the/ flow of human blood in human veins” convey the extreme age and richness of human society, including his own culture.

Hughes accomplishes this with a straightforward, easily understandable writing style that clearly conveys his thoughts and opinions, although he has frequently been criticized for the slightly negative tone to his works.

      One of the most predominate themes seen throughout Hughes’s poetry is that of Hughes provides a more personal account of the discrimination he endured because of his race in “Poet to Patron.” With the lines “What right has anyone to say/ That I/ Must throw out pieces of my heart/ For pay?

With the exception of Emanuel 1967 (cited under Biographies) and Barksdale 1977 (cited under Criticism: Poetry), critical overviews of Hughes’s work have thus taken the shape of essay collections.

Most valuable among the essay collections are O’Daniel 1971, Tracy 2004, Tidwell and Ragar 2007, and Miller 2013, which offer original scholarship rather than reprints.

However, this radical verse landed him in serious trouble at home.

In the 1940s and 1950s, Hughes became the target of smear campaigns and FBI surveillance.


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