“I Hear America Singing” by Walt Whitman
The poem “I Hear America Singing” by Walt Whitman is written in first-person point of view. Whitman writes the poem from his viewpoint using the word “I”. Whitman, as the narrator, hears and observes the hard-working individuals of America as they live their lives, carrying out their everyday responsibilities. We see through the eyes of Whitman, not any of the characters within the poem. If it weren’t first-person point of view, we would not be able to understand each different character and what tasks they deliver to America.
As Walt Whitman sightsees America, he explains listening as the working men and women sing about how pleased they are, and how wonderous America is. “I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear…”, “Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be blithe and strong…” Whitman uses words like “blithe and strong” referring to happiness and pride, and “belongs to him” which exalts their pride while working. The tone of “I Hear America Singing” is joyful. Walt Whitman rejoices the ordinary life of a regular American as they go about his or her daily responsibilities. He shows satisfaction is possible through one loving their everyday work. The tone of the poem “I Hear America Singing” by Walt Whitman is jubilant and happy. The poem expresses Whitman’s” celebration of all that the good he grasps of America. !!!Langston Hughes” writing in “I too” shows his point of view by voicing how he is a burden to society, although this does not weaken his hope and determination to be equal.
The author states, “I am the darker brother”, talking on behalf of his race, since during his time African Americans were treated unfairly because of their skin color. Hughes does not mention the words racism, segregation, discrimination, or anything about the Civil Rights Movement. Instead, Hughes” refers to a “darker brother” being told to eat somewhere else. As it talks of such a brother, the reader can easily infer the poem as a cry for the African-American man. This leads the reader to really see the point of view of the writer. The imagery used by Hughes makes it as if you can really feel like you are there watching the man being told to eat in the other room. You can see him sitting in the kitchen eating his dinner by himself, and you can see him being ok with that. He knows that one day it will be better. When he says, “They’ll see how beautiful I am…And be ashamed” He is proud, and this makes the reader really notice the emotion in the authors writing.
When Hughes” expresses his ability to “laugh”, to “eat well”, and to “grow strong”, he also emphasizes his ability to be happy in a racist society. Something else that contributes to this poem’s joyful tone is its allusion to the poetry of Walt Whitman. Whitman often emphasizes “singing” of America, and to celebrate the variety of life in America. By saying that he’s also singing of America, Hughes intentionally replies to Whitman and the joyful tone of his poetry. To conclude, Hughes steps up to sing the verses Whitman might have missed.
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