Definately a Student

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EL237

I really liked "Theme For English B," by Langston Hughes, in part for its simplicity, and in part for the very real level of thought occuring in it. It really captures the student-like mind set. The first part offers the basic details, hometown, where you live, where you go and went to school, age, race, hobbies, a bit like a facebook profile. Then it really switches gears and goes into greater depth, trying to describe much more abstractly, the speaker's role in the world, and where they fit.  

I guess I can really relate to the idea that, (or that's the idea that stands out most for me in the poem), because that's kind of how I recall the age of 22. The answer to the "Who am I?" tended to be a clump of facts and details, the majority of which could apply to anyone. Who really hates to "eat, sleep, drink, and be in love." Despite this, we tend to, at that age, be trying to figure out our relationship to the rest of the world, and determining where we fit in terms of society.

Obviously, a big part of the poem that I really didn't discuss is race, and the reason I left that until the end is because despite the racial emphasis of the content, the basic tone is very universal. While I'm not black, (and a whole lot of people who enjoy Langston Hughes' poetry aren't), I can still relate to the very idea of being young and coming to terms with the world, and determining how you relate to it. Then again, if I were an African-American in 1959, my race would be a massive part of how I relate to society.  

1 Comments

Dianna Griffin said:

Dave, I liked the way in which you addressed race. You didn't blame the way he has written his poem on his color. Instead, you showed how even though you aren't black, you can still relate and enjoy his poetry. :)

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