Langston Hughes: The Harlem Renaissance

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The Harlem Renaissance was an outpouring of African American music, art, and literature. It was a very controversial and contradictory time filled with political turmoil for African Americans. Hughes however, wrote through it. He captured the joys and pains of the African American experience through his poetry. Langston Hughes was born on February 1, 1902 in Joplin, Missouri to James and Carrie Hughes. As a youth, Hughes moved several times. This was however very beneficial to Hughes, he took meanings from the people and places he went to. Hughes mainly moved between the homes of his grandmother, his mother, and other surrogate parents. Hughes attended Central High School in Cleveland, Ohio. He was designated “class poet” and also published…show more content…
Langston Hughes captured the joys and pains of the African American experience through plays, short stories, essays, and poetry. His poetic language was lofty and lyrical, his writing was political and personal (Harper). He was a very prolific writer; he composed over 800 poems and became the most prominent voice among the writers and artists of the Harlem Renaissance. Langston Hughes immersed himself in the culture of his people while in Harlem and became the leader of the Harlem Renaissance. The power of Langston Hughes’s words hoisted writing about black Americans. At Central High School in Cleveland, Ohio, Vera Hubbard recited some of Hughes’s poetry in an assembly and some of the students remarked that for the first time, they understood the history of black people (Harper). However, some people saw Hughes’s views as radical and revolutionary. As a result, his work was censored, and he was labeled a communist. Hughes’s father was called a self loathing Negro because he believed that African Americans were ignorant and lazy. Langston on the other hand, embraced his American and African heritage. In The Big Sea, he wrote, “I was only an American Negro--
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