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James Mercer Langston Hughes

It includes the collections The Weary Blues (1926), The Dream Keeper (1932), Shakespeare in Harlem (1942), and Fields of Wonder (1947. Before looking at some of the specific ways in which Hughes's poetry reflected and created the tone of the Harlem Renaissance, we must examine that period in history itself, looking first at the demographic shift that brought blacks from the agrarian countryside into the cities at the turn of the last century. Each major development of blacks in the United States that manifested itself in the Harlem Renaissance can be seen in his work, as is noted below.

The movement of blacks from rural to urban areas led to profound changes in African-American society and cultural life. The expanding black urban communities offered the migrants greater freedom than the rural South and provided a broader range of social institutions and educational opportunities. The cities were particularly attractive to blacks who had been educated at Howard, Fisk, Atlanta, Hampton, and other black colleges established during the 19th century. College-educated intellectuals, including Ida B. Wells, Mary Church Terrell, W. E. B. Du Bois, and William Monroe Trotter, departed from the accommodationism of Washington to pursue equal rights through various protest groups, such as the all-black African-American Council and Niagara Mov


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