Langston Hughes essay “ The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain ”
In 1926, Langston Hughes wrote an essay The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain. In his essay, Hughes presents a state of affairs where the African Americans felt inferior in their province black people and their civilization and strove to encompass the civilization of the Whites. He did this by usage of the African American poet who saw it good to be a white poet. During this clip, the White people despised and looked down on the black people. Therefore, the inkinesss understood that it was better to be a white adult male or a white author.
The Negro poet suggested that he liked to be a white author, intending that he desired to be a white adult male ( Hughes, Para. 1 ) . Harmonizing to Hughes, this was “ the mountain standing in the manner of any true Negro art in America-this impulse within the race towards whiteness, the desire to pour racial individualism into the cast of American standardisation, and to be a small Negro and every bit much American as possible. ” ( Hughes, Para. 1 ) .
Hughes besides examines the province of the African American households of that clip. The inkinesss made their kids believe that the Whites were superior. They forced their kids to emulate the Whites and seek to be like them in all facets. Any kid who tried to act like a black adult male received a terrible penalty for that. The inkinesss were determined through all agencies to maintain away their civilization from their ain kids ( Amada, para.2 ) . The parents made their kids see white as a symbol of virtuousness and success. This upbringing affected the lives of the kids up to their maturity because their parents made them to believe that in order to be portion of the bigger society and be successful they had to act as Whites.
The essay besides talks about the difference between the upper category and in-between category African Americans. Hughes states that the manner the two groups acted made them different, instead than their fiscal differences. They believed that they would mount higher in society harmonizing to the degree they acted as white people in society.
Hughes wrote in unfavorable judgment of the Negro poet who, in his authorship desired to be a white adult male ( Kelley, 126 ) . He showed how the in-between category and upper category African Americans tried to copy the life style and civilization of the white work forces. The black Americans did this by eschewing their Negro theaters, avoiding the Negro religious music, reading magazines of the Whites and get marrieding visible radiation colored adult females in order for them to look like the Whites. These categories of the inkinesss besides tried to restrict the Negro poets and authors on what they were supposed to compose. These high category African Americans had started estranging themselves from the other black community. This category struggles to hold regard in society even at the disbursal of losing their racial individuality. These people were ashamed of their colour as black people and did non desire to see their ain beauty. This is why they emulated the white people in physical visual aspect, in dressing in action and in the manner they conducted their worship services.
Hughes besides speaks about those African American creative persons who were true to their civilization. They held dependably to their civilization, a thing that made the remainder of the people to estrange them. This community of those who held to their civilization survived good and their work is one of the most famed today.
The purpose of Hughes ‘ essay was to promote the beauty of the African Americans ‘ linguistic communication and lifestyles to the national literary phase. He encouraged the Negro Artists to accept their ain race and non to turn away from it. Hughes besides suggested that any author who wanted his graphics to look like or hold some facet of “ whiteness ” was non being true to himself or herself ( Floyd-Miller, Para 4 ) . The African Americans had set for themselves criterions and endeavor to run into these criterions in order to look like or live like the white Americans. Hughes ‘ end, hence, was to promote the black creative persons to make obstructions to these criterions by usage of their relevant, important and original work in order to alter the belief the inkinesss had that Whites were superior. This graphics was to function the intent of altering the black ‘s desire of desiring to be white to that of accepting that they were Negros and Beautiful. Hughes writes that to his head, “ it is the responsibility of the younger Negro creative person, if he accepts any responsibilities at all from foreigners, to alter through the force of his art that old whispering ‘I want to be white, ‘ hidden in the aspirations of his people, to ‘why should I desire to be white? I am a Negro — and beautiful! ” ( Hughes, Para. 12 )
Up to the sixtiess, the American white community still despised the American black community. They ne’er appreciated the work of most African Americans like poets and authors. However, this changed as the Whites started taking involvement in the black people ‘s graphics. The Whites visited the black people ‘s community to bask their public presentations. Presently, this issue of favoritism of literary work has ceased and many of the black Americans ‘ literary work is celebrated today.
Hughes indicates that he has assurance in lower categories of the African Americans. He saw them as being free from the jobs of self-esteem and that they were confident and satisfied in their nature as inkinesss. He saw this category of inkinesss as a beginning of inspiration utilizing their artistic endowments. Their battle was non to look respectable to the white readers therefore resisted the force per unit area and wrote on the subjects they felt were relevant in showing themselves against what the Whites wanted. This portrays the powerful artistic tool or weapon the lower category black Africans have.
Harmonizing to Amada ( Para. 3 ) , although much has changed in the manner the white Americans view the African Americans, the black community is still non to the full accepted. There is still some racial favoritism in some towns of the United States of America. However, the black Americans have made significant betterments socially, politically and economically.
In decision, Hughes ‘ essay can assist us to cognize the manner the African Americans related with themselves and with the Whites in their society. It shows us how the white Americans looked down on the black Americans. We learn how the in-between category and upper category African Americans yearned to de like the Whites and their battle to accomplish this. It besides shows how the lower category black people faced favoritism from the Whites every bit good as the well off African Americans. The essay farther shows how the black poets and authors managed to get the better of the white ‘s force per unit area to compose on the subjects that they wanted while disregarding others. This brought about positive alterations in the United States of America. The finding of the Negros helped the inkinesss to have some degree of credence in the American community. The Whites eventually accepted the literary work of the inkinesss including their verse forms, vocals and books. With the bend of things, there is hope that things will be acquiring better until we get a united community at the terminal.
Floyd-Miller, Cherryl, Afro-american writers: Langston Hughes, seting the limelight on the black experience, n.d, Web. October 31, 2010 hypertext transfer protocol: //www.helium.com/items/875493-african-american-authors-langston-hughes-putting-the-spotlight-on-the-black
Hughes, Langston, The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain. The State, 23 June 1926, March 15 2000. Web. October 31,2010. hypertext transfer protocol: //www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/45a/360.html
Kelly, B. James and Bloom, Harold, Bloom ‘s How to Write about Langston Hughes. Infobase Publishing, 2009. Print.