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Harlem Essay | Critical Essay #1

This Study Guide consists of approximately 29 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Harlem.
This section contains 1,595 words
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Critical Essay #1

Harry Phillips is a freelance writer and is currently teaching in the Department of English and Foreign Languages at Central Piedmont Community College. In the following essay, Phillips examines how the negative imagery of "Harlem" and the poem's structure of unanswered questions lead the reader to "consider the various psychological and emotional circumstances black individuals might experience in a society that continues to struggle with putting into practice its egalitarian ideals. "

Legendary blues musician W. C. Handy once remarked of one of Langston Hughes's shorter poems that the poet had accomplished in four lines "what it would have taken Shakespeare two acts and three scenes to say." Handy's pithy observation hits at a central feature of much twentieth-century poetry-the poet's ability to create a mountain of meaning from the studied arrangement of a very few words. Published in 1951, "Harlem" manages to evoke nearly a century of African-American history...

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This section contains 1,595 words
(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Harlem Study Guide
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Harlem from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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