`` Dreams Deferred `` By Langston Hughes Essay

`` Dreams Deferred `` By Langston Hughes Essay

Length: 1339 words (3.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Harlem Renaissance era was the name given to the period of time between the ending of the first World War in 1918 and the middle of the 1930s. During this time African American artists; writers, photographers, musicians, scholars etc., were all venturing into Harlem, NY the center place of art to explore these topics. Among one of these authors was Langston Hughes, who was one of the most notable figures of the Harlem Renaissance era. With his vast array of poetry, he shaped the way that African American people were portrayed in the public eye. With his poem “Dreams Deferred” in particular showed this concept in depth. This topic of African Americans during the Harlem Renaissance being seen as less than equal to white was a topic that was seen previously during class discussions.

The poem “Dreams Deferred” by Langston Hughes is a poem that discusses what happens to dreams that are put off for the time being or in other words deferred. Throughout the poem the speaker gives possibilities of what could happen to these dreams, do they dry up, fester, rot or even crust over but alas all these possibilities the speaker does not know the answer. This questioning continues until the last line of the poem where the speaker asks “Or does it explode?”. By asking this question it makes the reader think about what could happen if you do not make your dreams a reality. This poem could be interpreted in many different ways, but one of these interpretations is the reference to African American people during this time period. At this time, even though slavery ended in 1863 by the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation by late president Abraham Lincoln, African Americans were still being seen as an inferior race. Even though there was m...


... middle of paper ...


...eferred because they were still seen as an inferior race even after the Emancipation Proclamation signing by Abraham Lincoln in 1863. This theme of African American people being discriminated against and seen as an inferior race is seen in other works done in class discussion this semester. The poems “Yet do I marvel” by Countee Cullen and “Dead Fires” by Jessie Redmon Fauset also show this theme. This was a theme that was discussed by many poets because they were fed up of being treated so poorly and unequally when they were no longer slaves. To conclude, the Literature of the Harlem Renaissance course gave an insight into the history and meaning behind many poems, short stories, and sonnets. With this understanding it is very clear that many African Americans were finally getting a voice that so greatly deserved even though there was still discrimination going on.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Dreams Deferred In Langston Hughes’s poem, Harlem Essay

- In Langston Hughes’s poem, Harlem, he questions what happens to a “dream deferred” and he lists multiple possibilities that all involve a dream going away (Hughes, Harlem). This poem seems to define Hughes’s life of not wanting to see his own dreams pass him by despite moving from place to place due to his parents’ separation and economic struggles (Otfinoski). Beyond that, Hughes faced racism that could have gotten in the way of his own goals, but instead of letting this deter him, he used it as fuel to pursue a literary career....   [tags: discrimination, racism, writer]

Better Essays
736 words (2.1 pages)

A Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes and My Little Dreams by Georgia Douglas Johnson

- The Harlem Renaissance was a cultural movement during the 1920s and 1930s, in which African-American art, music and literature flourished. It was significant in many ways, one, because of its success in destroying racist stereotypes and two, to help African-Americans convey their hard lives and the prejudice they experienced. In this era, two distinguished poets are Langston Hughes, who wrote the poem “A Dream Deferred” and Georgia Douglas Johnson who wrote “My Little Dreams”. These two poems address the delayment of justice, but explore it differently, through their dissimilar uses of imagery, tone and diction....   [tags: Compare Contrast Comparison]

Better Essays
793 words (2.3 pages)

Essay on Dreams of Blacks Deferred in the Poetry of Langston Hughes

- Dreams of Blacks Deferred in the Poetry of Langston Hughes   The poetry of Langston Hughes, the poet laureate of Harlem, is an effective commentary on the condition of blacks in America during the 20th Century. Hughes places particular emphasis on Harlem, a black area in New York that became a destination of many hopeful blacks in the first half of the 1900's. In much of Hughes' poetry, a theme that runs throughout is that of a "dream deferred." The recurrence of a "dream deferred" in several Hughes poems paints a clear picture of the disappointment and dismay that blacks in America faced in Harlem....   [tags: Harlem Island Good Morning Comment on Curb]

Better Essays
1710 words (4.9 pages)

Analysis of Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes Essay

- Analysis of Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes Dreams are the driving force of America today. Every person has some sort of dreams and or goals. Although in life everyone has dreams and goals, there are obviously more struggles for some ethnic groups than for others. The poem, "Dream Deferred," by Langston Hughes, is one man's expression of his dreams during a difficult time period. As a black man in a time period where African-Americans were considered an inferior group of people,dreams and goals would have been difficult to realize....   [tags: Dream Deferred Langston Hughes Essays]

Better Essays
627 words (1.8 pages)

`` Dreams `` By Langston Hughes Essay

- Langston Hughes is a well known African American artists. He was born on February 1, 1902, in Joplin Missouri. Hughes was a poet, playwright, lyricist, and journalist. His works include poems, novels, plays, and short stories. He also was one of the important figures during the Harlem Renaissance. Hughes was a democrat and anti-fascist. Many of his works reflect his political values. His ideas portray freedom, social change, and equality for African Americans. There are two famous poems by Hughes that show that he specifically wanted African Americans to hold on to their dreams....   [tags: Langston Hughes, African American]

Better Essays
1846 words (5.3 pages)

The Life & Poems of Langston Hughes Essay

- During a time in American History were African Americans had no rights of freedom of speech or even a right to vote. Growing up in many different cities and living with many relatives, Langston Hughes experienced poverty. Langston Hughes used poetry to speak to the people. Langston Hughes is a pioneer of African American literature and the Harlem renaissance error. Mr. Hughes dedicated his poems to the struggles, pride, dreams, and racial injustices of African American people. Langston Hughes was born James Langston Hughes, February 1, 1902 in Joplin, Missouri....   [tags: poetry, Langston Hughes, racism,]

Better Essays
777 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on A Dream Deferred By Langston Hughes

- Langston Hughes was an important figure in writing about the struggles of African Americans. His poems express vivid imagery that allows readers to understand the conflicts blacks went through during the 1900’s. In his poem, “A Dream Deferred”, Langston Hughes describes the attitudes of black Americans during times of struggle and limited rights. Blacks had dreams in the 1900’s such as economic, social, and educational equality, and other basic civil rights. Unfortunately, racism was a barrier that got in the way of achieving these goals....   [tags: African American, Langston Hughes]

Better Essays
748 words (2.1 pages)

Langston Hughes 's The Weary Blues Essay

- The 20th century was an important time for poets, especially Langston Hughes. The outlook of writings were being looked at more closely. While others were writing, for their own pleasure, Hughes composed his writings based off of his audience (poets.org). James Mercer Langston Hughes, this famous poet was born in Joplin, Missouri, on February 1st, 1902, as a child Hughes did not have a stable home. The poetry of Langston Hughes began once he settled in Lincoln with his mother and stepfather. Hughes traveled to Mexico and Columbia after graduating....   [tags: Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes]

Better Essays
727 words (2.1 pages)

Essay on Harlem By Langston Hughes

- Harlem By Langston Hughes Throughout life, people are always deciding what to do with themselves. But along with what they want to do with their life, they always have that certain dream that they hope to accomplish. Not to say that it is to be rich, cause that is probably a lot of people's dream, which is why we have the lottery. But it is that certain dream that in the future the person will be happy that they finally set out their dream to come true. But not all get to live out their dream....   [tags: Dream Deferred Langston Hughes Essays]

Better Essays
690 words (2 pages)

Essay on The Imagery of Langston Hughes’s Harlem

- The Imagery of Langston Hughes’s Harlem      “What happens when dreams are deferred?” is the first line in Langston Hughes’s “Harlem,” a very interesting social commentary on Harlem in the early 1950’s. It talks about a “dream deferred” Harlem, which was a haven for literature and intellect in the late 20’s and early 30’s, but has become run down and faded to a shadow of its former existence. Langston Hughes’s “Harlem” is filled with extremely vivid imagery.      “Harlem,” by Langston Hughes uses various examples of imagery that one can relate to....   [tags: Langston Hughes Harlem]

Better Essays
502 words (1.4 pages)