Slave on the Block Essay

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Sarah Madsen Hardy holds a Ph.D. in English Language and Literature. In the following essay, she analyzes Hughes's choice to focus on white characters in "Slave on the Block."

One can see Langston Hughes's choice to write a collection of stories focusing on the "ways of white folks" as a curious one. For he was part of a vanguard of young black writers who set out to prove not only that African Americans had the talent to write literature, but that black people's experiences were as valid a subject for great art as those of whites. Earlier in his career, Hughes had transformed the black musical folk tradition of the blues into powerful poetry about the African American urban experience. Furthermore, for Hughes, representing African-American experiences had political implications as well as artistic ones. As an important voice in the literary movement known as the Harlem Renaissance...

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This section contains 1,887 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Slave on the Block Study Guide
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