February 3, 2015

Celebrating Langston Hughes

Kicking off the series? A spotlight on Langston Hughes.

Yesterday, Google opened Black History Month with a doodle celebrating what would have been the 113th birthday of poet, social activist, novelist, playwright, and columnist; Langston Hughes.

Born in 1902, Langston Hughes is known as a leader of the Harlem Renaissance, the African American movement in the 1920s that celebrated black life and culture. The movement was inspired and influenced by his life in Harlem and his work helped shape American literature and politics.

With all of his work, he had a strong sense of racial pride; he celebrated African American excellence, culture and spirituality while condemning racism and injustice. The picture on your right was taken from Google and is a reference to his involvement in the movement and animates his famous poem, “I Dream a World”.  He is known as saying that “to explain and illuminate the Negro condition in America.”

Recommended Reading:

Not Without Laughter, Knopf, 1930 

Montage of a Dream Deferred, Holt, 1951 (included in this collection)

Find out more about the genius that was Langston Hughes here.

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Natalya