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Analysis and comments on Let America Be America Again by Langston Hughes

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Comment 86 of 176, added on November 6th, 2008 at 11:31 AM.

Obama's election night was marred by the anti-gay ballot measures that
passed in Alabama, Florida, and California. Langston Hughes was
African-American AND gay! America is STILL not "America" for people like
him, 60 years after he wrote that stirring poem. That so many people still
hold the view that gay people or their loving relationships are by
definition a "threat" to marriage, to family values, and to children
(Alabama), is more than sad. It leads to injustice. Audrey Lorde wrote in
her essay entitled, "There is no Hierarchy of Oppressions," the following:
"I simply do not believe that one aspect of myself can possibly profit
from the oppression of any other part of my identity. I know that my
people cannot possibly profit from the oppression of any other group which
seeks the right to peaceful existence. Rather, we diminish ourselves by
denying to others what we have shed blood to obtain for our children. And
those children need to learn that they do not have to become like each
other in order to work together for a future they will all share." Audre
Lorde

I heard an African American pastor on NPR this morning saying that he just
couldn't equate race with "sexual preference." He fails to see that it
doesn't matter what human difference one chooses...whether it be gender,
race, religion, ethnicity, eye color or left-handedness: to deny any
citizen the right to be treated as an equal under law...to deny that
citizen life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness based on such common
human differences...is simply wrong. Letting my friends Paula and Kelly
marry will hurt no one, and would greatly benefit them, their two beautiful
daughters, their respective families, and their community (Virgina is about
to lose them and their many contributions to a more gay-friendly
neighboring state!)

I long for America to become a more perfect union, not only for the Obama
girls, but for Paula and Kelly's girls as well!

Karen Solon from United States
Comment 85 of 176, added on November 5th, 2008 at 1:58 AM.

This poem is realized in the symbolism of last night's election of Barak
Obama as the 44th president of the United States of America.

Darren from United States
Comment 84 of 176, added on October 27th, 2008 at 7:17 PM.

I think the ANTIGUAS POEM IS AVERY NICE POEM
I think it has very high standers

Imani from Antigua and Barbuda
Comment 83 of 176, added on March 28th, 2008 at 11:15 PM.

Huges' poem will continue to resonate until his dream of a "land where
every man is free" is realized. If you cannot see the very same ills in
America today that are written about in this poem from 1938, then you have
not been paying attention. Does every child in this great land have access
to decent heal-thcare? Is anyone going to bed hungry tonight? Can each of
us truly express who we are in public without fear of reprisal?

“Every” means both “each” and “all” and unless we can show that each of us
is free: free from hunger, free from poverty, free from discrimination;
then all of us are diminished. If the American experiment fails, it will
be because we were afraid to root out injustice. It will happen if we are
afraid to live up to our ideals.

The voice in this poem that points out the inequality and inconsistencies
in the American “dream” is not simply whining about the treatment of
African-Americans. The tendency to link this poem solely to the
African-American plight is a disservice to both Hughes and America. Seldom
do we wish to hear that we are not living up to expectation. It is easy to
marginalize the downtrodden until your “unalienable rights” are stepped
on.

This poem speaks to me of our need to work together, our wish to eradicate
injustice, and our belief that what the Declaration of Independence states
should be realized.

America has problems, many of them deep-seated. She also has a great many
greathearted citizens. Huges gives us a rallying cry, a call to become
part of the solution. If you can’t hear his plea, perhaps you are part of
the problem.


PGLK from United States
Comment 82 of 176, added on March 28th, 2008 at 11:15 PM.

Huges' poem will continue to resonate until his dream of a "land where
every man is free" is realized. If you cannot see the very same ills in
America today that are written about in this poem from 1938, then you have
not been paying attention. Does every child in this great land have access
to decent heal-thcare? Is anyone going to bed hungry tonight? Can each of
us truly express who we are in public without fear of reprisal?

“Every” means both “each” and “all” and unless we can show that each of us
is free: free from hunger, free from poverty, free from discrimination;
then all of us are diminished. If the American experiment fails, it will
be because we were afraid to root out injustice. It will happen if we are
afraid to live up to our ideals.

The voice in this poem that points out the inequality and inconsistencies
in the American “dream” is not simply whining about the treatment of
African-Americans. The tendency to link this poem solely to the
African-American plight is a disservice to both Hughes and America. Seldom
do we wish to hear that we are not living up to expectation. It is easy to
marginalize the downtrodden until your “unalienable rights” are stepped
on.

This poem speaks to me of our need to work together, our wish to eradicate
injustice, and our belief that what the Declaration of Independence states
should be realized.

America has problems, many of them deep-seated. She also has a great many
greathearted citizens. Huges gives us a rallying cry, a call to become
part of the solution. If you can’t hear his plea, perhaps you are part of
the problem.


PGLK from United States
Comment 81 of 176, added on December 3rd, 2007 at 3:57 PM.

the poem was real good and Langston Hughes is just a good poet

Ray G from United States
Comment 80 of 176, added on October 4th, 2007 at 7:49 PM.

for me being just a student looking for a poem for school.i enjoyed reading
it.it showed lots of emtion and a lot of things that we DREAM about

drew d. from United States
Comment 79 of 176, added on June 10th, 2007 at 12:03 AM.

I've really enjoyed this poem and I think of Langston as one of the
greatest Americans of the last century. The Portion where the poet says
"And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?" reminds me of a
point in W.E.B. DuBois' The Souls of black folk when DuBois is speaking of
when he is a child and a 'veil' is drawn over his face, he finds out as a
child that he is somehow lesser than other humans in his country and
belongs to an inescapable & perpetual lower caste. His heart is broken and
a bit of innocence is seemingly lost. This is the true cry of my soul as an
American, I have a mixed heritage like Mr. Hughes had & perhaps that
contributes to this. I see this poem as a dream of a greater America, one
where college campuses are no longer cold and numbing, freedom is real,
racial and caste colonial ideas are done away with, and all people are
truly equal.

Chris J. from United States
Comment 78 of 176, added on June 6th, 2007 at 9:15 PM.

The main idea of this poem is equality for all. And true, at the time this
poem was written, America was going through a phase of intense
discrimination. Looking back at those times, America has improved, but the
foundation of which this country was built on, cannot and does not want to
accept the success of minorities, rather white people. It is true, and
admit it, white people are better off with more benefits, ex: Hurricane
Katrina. The example is not the point here. Fact is Fact. White people are
dominant. Those other than whites, are considered minorities and treated
like minorities. Our only way to success is to pave our way through. Don't
matter whether there be snakes lashing at you on the road. Look straight
forward and go towards your goal. Never give up under any circumstances.
Those above you will just laugh and say, "see, i told you." Never ever let
those above you look down on you. Never work towards making people look
towards you, but instead work your best, be number 1 in all you do, and
eventually people will hold you in respect, benefits will come, and you in
turn can help those in the situation you were in before your success began.


Sarah from United States
Comment 77 of 176, added on May 14th, 2007 at 12:28 PM.

I love how Lansgton hughes had so much emotion

Lilli from United States

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Information about Let America Be America Again

Poet: Langston Hughes
Poem: Let America Be America Again
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 67 times


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