Q:

What is "Democracy" by Langston Hughes about?

A:

The poem "Democracy" by Langston Hughes is about the importance of attaining and fighting for democracy. The narrator emphasizes that it is something men and women have a right to, and should feel empowered to achieve. By living in the U.S., democracy is a freedom that the narrator is entitled to, and should not have to wait for.

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"Democracy" was published in 1949. It addressed issues faced by African Americans in the United States, namely that the 15th Amendment had not come to fruition for all Americans. At one time, not all Americans could vote due to a poll tax, required literacy tests and a stipulation in the amendment that only African American men could vote. The right to vote is a freedom granted in a democracy, and a freedom that the poem concerns itself with in its discussion of democracy.

Langston Hughes' poem encouraged people not to take the issue of democracy lightly. He did not directly mention race, but the majority of his work was concerned with life for African Americans in the United States. Hughes was often criticized by his contemporaries for portraying life in such a negative fashion. However, his writing was politicized, and as such, he sought to produce poems with a message.

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    What is a summary of "Dream Variations" by Langston Hughes?

    A:

    In "Dream Variations," Langston Hughes wants a carefree life free of discrimination and prosecution. The first stanza describes his dream and the feelings he enjoyed in the past. In the second stanza, the poet is dreaming after a long day's hard work, and this dream is incomplete.

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  • Q:

    What were Langston Hughes' contributions to society?

    A:

    Langston Hughes contributed greatly to society with his poetry, books and plays. Hughes was also a columnist for the Chicago Defender. Many consider Hughes to have been an important writer during the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920s.

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    What is the meaning of Langston Hughes' "Salvation"?

    A:

    "Salvation" is a short personal narrative from Langston Hughes' childhood about the struggle to reconcile adult concepts with a childish mind. Detailing an afternoon he spends in a church waiting for a literal light and epiphany to reveal Jesus to him, the short story ultimately reveals that Hughes lied about being saved in order to please his aunt and later wept over the deception.

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  • Q:

    What were Langston Hughes' major accomplishments?

    A:

    Langston Hughes was one of the most prominent black poets of the Harlem Renaissance. His accomplishments include publishing his first poem, "The Negro Speaks of Rivers," to critical acclaim; winning several major literary awards for his poems, plays, short stories and novels; founding theaters; teaching at universities; and being a major contributor to the Harlem Renaissance and helping to shape American literature.

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