Introduction and Afro-American Fragments
• Hughes is introduced as a very important figure of both the Harlem Renaissance and the American literary canon. He is discussed as a poet, essayist, and activist as well as the originator of jazz poetry.
• While many of the poems address the fragmented nature of the identity of African-Americans (feeling both yet neither African nor American), the poems do have a sense of triumph in them.
• The last poem, "Dream Variations," concludes the section on a positive note, as it speaks of black skin being part of the natural world and therefore beautiful and ever-changing.
Section II: Feet O' Jesus
• The poems in Section II: Feet O'Jesus follows a religious theme; many with Biblical references and images of fire and brimstone.
• Poems in this section also reflect a belief in the Christian God with an African-American flavor. Additionally, the language shifts between formal English...
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