An Explication Of Langston Hughes' "Mother To Son"

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An Explication of Langston Hughes' "Mother to Son" Langston Hughes once stated in his own words that his whole purpose for writing was, "to explain and illuminate the Negro condition in America." In the poem "Mother to Son", he denotes his belief on racism in America. In "Mother to Son", a mother is giving advice to her son about life from her perspective and experiences. She wants her son to keep striving on what he believes and to have a more prosperous life than what she had.

Langston Hughes was born in Joplin, Missouri in 1902. He lived with his grandmother for most of her life but often stayed with his mother in Cleveland, Ohio. He grew up in poverty and was exposed to racism in his youth. However, he believed that things would change and his culture must press on. By 1929, he was a well know poet during the Harlem Renaissance, the growth of African-American art and literature in Harlem, New York. He promoted the African-American culture and supported the Civil Rights Movement. Hughes used poetry to express himself and has written over sixty poems. One of them being "Mother to Son", which expresses how the blacks must stand tall and believe in a better future.

Starting with the title, "Mother to Son", allows the reader to trust that the poem is going to be about a mother and a son. Just by reading the title, the reader may wonder what type of poem this is going to be. It shows a sense of leadership because a son sees his mother as an authoritative figure, someone who he can trust, someone who he has a bond with. Mothers are usually a figure who nurtures and molds their children into the right path. This gives the reader...