Cross by Langston Hughes

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​In the Poem Cross by Langston Hughes, he shows how mixed races encounter hardships. One major hardship that mixed races encounter is identity problems. Langston demonstrates how not embracing a specific ethnicity causes him to show spitefulness toward his “white old man” and his Caucasian heritage. Langston also shows how identifying with his “Black old mother” and his African American heritage can cause bitterness because he did not know his true identity. At the end of Cross Langston struggles with confusion with being black and white and wonders “Where is he going to die” and will he find his identity before that time comes. Another major hardship that Langston struggles with is racial discrimination. Langston knows that by him being a mulato he would have two different lifestyles. If Langston lived with his father in his “fine big house” he would face racial discrimination from his African American heritage because they felt that Caucasians were cold-blooded. If he lived with his mom in a “shack” he would be looked at in disgust from his Caucasian heritage. Langston showed embarrassment because he did not want to identify with “neither” because of all the discrimination he has and will face. The last hardship that Langston Hughes encountered was the challenge to overcome prejudice. Langston finally realized it was not his mom fault that people were prejudiced towards him, so he was apologetic and took his”curses back.” He even went to the extreme of wishing her to hell, but he knew that first step to surpassing prejudice was to be “sorry.” Langston learned to accept himself for who he was and he was no longer ashamed and wished his mother “well.”