This essay I Too Sing America has a total of 798 words and 4 pages.
I too sing America
"I, Too" by Langston Hughes, it creates a feeling of an individual
vs. a large group enhancing the loneliness felt. The poem recognizes a certain inequality African Americans felt during a time period of racial
discrimination. Hughes recognizes that although different in color, all people living in America were Americans and deserved to be treated equally. Hughes is not known for using lots of symbolism. His poetry is generally straight forward and to the point. There is not much hidden meaning in his poetry either. What little symbolism he does use is very deep. It can be interpreted in a many number of ways. I Too Sing America has psychological and cultural references such as intergroup stereotyping, communication, cooperation, and conflict.
The poem is about the hope of one day being equal, it is expressed in each stanza at least once. "I laugh/and eat well/and grow strong", these lines represent hope along with determination. It also gives us insight to the style that Hughes uses in all his poetry. He uses humor in most of his writing to convey his message though slight that is what the laugh represents, The laugh also represents his thoughts of the future. Meaning that he?ll be able to look back on all this and laugh. The eating represents learning and knowledge. Without knowledge one cannot further themselves in life or make themselves better. Eating well means to learn well and retain the knowledge. Growing strong represents the retaining of the knowledge. Not only does this mean to grow strong with knowledge but for the voices of equality to grow stronger. The biggest use of symbolism is the last line: "I, too, am America." In Walt Whitman's poem I hear America singing The American people are just the working class Anglo Saxons. The line "I, too, am America" shouts out that someone was forgotten. The use of tomorrow refers to the greater tomorrow, the future which to this day has not yet come.
The psychological and cultural references are not as blatantly placed as the symbolism. The darker brother represents the black man. In society darkness is used to symbolize evil. Eating in the kitchen, represents repression. Most Kitchens are hidden much like the suffering of African Americans. They were hidden from the company, the company can be interpreted as a metaphor for foreign countries, or people in general. Most American people were blind to the horror and brutality of slavery. Slavery was also Psychological, that's why the knowledge is important. Before one can rise up, one must first discover what it is they are rising up against. "Tomorrow/I?ll be at the table/nobody?ll dare/say to me, ?eat in the kitchen?, then." shows that they have learned and will no longer be held down. It also shows the strength of their voices that no one will challenge any longer. It shows the future and the past using the kitchen as the world.The best realization is made at the end of the poem :"They?ll see how beautiful I am/And be ashamed". At the time this poem was written the ugliest thing to be was to be black. But this poem foretold the future where black is beautiful. The European Americans of today must live with the shame and consequences of the earliest discrimination.
Poetry and other literature are our windows to the past present and future. This poem is a perfect example of that. This poem gives insight to the mind of the captive Negro. It shows the determination, will, and strength it took for one to survive. At this time they were still waiting for "tomorrow". This poem makes on wonder if its here yet.
I TOO, SING AMERICA
I, too, sing America.
I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the Kitchen
When Company comes,
But I laugh
And eat well,
And grow strong.
I?ll be at the table
When company comes.
Say to me,
"Eat in the kitchen,"
They?ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed----
I, too, am America
Topics Related to I Too Sing America
Jazz poetry, I, Too, Sing America, Langston Hughes, Shall and will, anglo saxons, walt whitman, racial discrimination, living in america, intergroup, langston hughes, large group, stanza, inequality, symbolism, loneliness, african americans, time period, equality, poem, voices, cooperation, insight, conflict, humor
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