Theme for English B” by Langston Hughes, English homework help

Background

A response paper should do for your reader a number of things. It should offer an interpretation of the poem’s overall meaning; it should analyze the language and images; it should evaluate its effectiveness on you as reader; and it should make clear what I call the “human” element. This last element simply means what overall statement the poem is making about humans, or what it means to be human. One way of showing the human element is to show how the poem’s ideas apply to your life and experiences.

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Prompt:

Write a response for the poems listed below. This essay is for a general academic audience.

Texts:

Formatting

4 pages (1000 words); MLA formatting

(see http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/ (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. for help.)

Reminders:

  • Do you use examples from the text to convincingly support the claims you’re making?
  • When quoting extensively, do you take time to explain the specific parts in the long quote that prove your point?
  • Have you managed to avoid simply offering a summary or reading of each separate line?
  • Do you refer to specific moments in the poem that clarify your idea/s for the reader, and have you offered line or stanza numbers?
  • Do you use the present tense when describing or discussing events in the poem? In literary criticism–which is what you’re writing–the convention is to use the present tense throughout. The idea is that the poet is communicating thoughts to you in the present–so that’s why the convention is to use the present tense.
  • Have you correctly spelled all author’s names and titles? Have you remembered to put the name of the poem in double-quotation marks? When referring to the author, have you written out his/her full name? HINT: When referring later on in the poem, only use the author’slast name . . .
  • Did you remember to put quotation marks at the beginning and end of each quoted part? Did you include the line number/s in parentheses after the quotation? Did you include the slant to indicate the beginning of a new line when you write the lines in sentences within your paragraph? ex: “I am sick, I must die./ Lord, have mercy on us” (6-7).

THIS PAPER MUST BE NON-PLAGIARIZED AND ITS THE MOST IMPORTANT POINT I EXPECT PLEASE.

Here is the poem :

THEME FOR ENGLISH B

By Langston Hughes

The instructor said,

Go home and write
a page tonight.
And let that page come out of you—
Then, it will be true.

I wonder if it’s that simple?
I am twenty-two, colored, born in Winston-Salem.
I went to school there, then Durham, then here
to this college on the hill above Harlem.
I am the only colored student in my class.
The steps from the hill lead down into Harlem
through a park, then I cross St. Nicholas,
Eighth Avenue, Seventh, and I come to the Y,
the Harlem Branch Y, where I take the elevator
up to my room, sit down, and write this page:

It’s not easy to know what is true for you or me
at twenty-two, my age. But I guess I’m what
I feel and see and hear, Harlem, I hear you:
hear you, hear me—we two—you, me, talk on this page.
(I hear New York too.) Me—who?
Well, I like to eat, sleep, drink, and be in love.
I like to work, read, learn, and understand life.
I like a pipe for a Christmas present,
or records—Bessie, bop, or Bach.
I guess being colored doesn’t make me NOT like
the same things other folks like who are other races.
So will my page be colored that I write?
Being me, it will not be white.
But it will be
a part of you, instructor.
You are white—
yet a part of me, as I am a part of you.
That’s American.
Sometimes perhaps you don’t want to be a part of me.
Nor do I often want to be a part of you.
But we are, that’s true!
As I learn from you,
I guess you learn from me—
although you’re older—and white—
and somewhat more free.

This is my page for English B.

1951