I, Too, Sing America

by Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes was welcomed to the world on February 1, 1902. The writer was born in Joplin, Missouri. His first poem was published in 1921. He went to Columbia University, but left after one year to travel around. Vachel Lindsay had later prmoted his poetry, and Hughes published his first book in 1926. He went on to write many works of poetry and plays, as well as a popular column for the Chicago Defender. He died on May 22, 1967.

http://www.biography.com/people/langston-hughes-9346313

The Poem Itself

I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

Tomorrow,
I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody’ll dare
Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,"
Then.

Besides,
They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed—

I, too, am America.

"I laugh, and eat well, and grow strong"

Theme of Poem

The theme of this poem would definitely be racism. The writer talks about being sent to the kitchen to eat when company comes so that they don't see him. However, this writer (Langston) is definitely an optimist. He talks about how, though he is sent to the kitchen, he will now eat well and grow strong. Then they will see how truly beautiful he is
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My Interpretation

My interpretation of the poem was that the writer may have over reacted? I thought about the poem deeper than the average person would. Yes, this was written in a time where racism was more common. However, in the poem, a boy was sent to the kitchen. I mean, aren't a lot of kids sent away when company comes? I think maybe Langston had overreacted when he was sent away. I think he was sent away because he was probably about seven years old and was disturbing the guests that his parents had over.
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