The Blues I'm Playing Essay

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"The Blues I'm Playing" is a celebration of the role of Blues and Jazz music in African American life and culture. The story is an argument against assimilationism suggesting that making it in the white world comes at the expense of the richness and beauty of black culture and community. It is simultaneously a critique of the high/low distinction between "pure" art and "folk" art, a distinction based on racist and classist social hierarchies.

In his own writing career, Hughes seems to exemplify these ideals in choosing to write about ordinary, everyday, working class black folks. And while he was criticized by black writers and intellectuals for perpetuating negative images of blacks, this was the very category of people among whom he gained enormous popularity, and he became the first black writer ever to earn his living solely from his writing. In writing for and about...

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This section contains 215 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy The Blues I'm Playing Study Guide
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The Blues I'm Playing from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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