I Too: A Poem About Racial Injustice in America

Good Essays
Axana Chhetri
Eng 102
Dr. Pierre
Essay #1
“I, too ”

The poem “I, too” was written by Langston Hughes in the year 1926. This poem talks about the struggle of a hard working minority black man who is suffering from the hardship of an unfair labor. This is an anti-discrimination poem which addresses about injustice of racism that has been done by the America. I argue that the theme of the poem, “I too” is about the
America's dark history of racial injustice during 1920s and also a look towards a brighter side, when white Americans will recognize black Americans as their equals, and be ashamed of their previous prejudice done to them.
Hughes uses different figurative language to illustrate the racial discrimination and prejudices the black people were facing in their day to day life in the American society and encourages them to unite against the racism that needs to be overcome. The author starts the poem by using the metaphor “I too, sing America” which shows that he is patriotic as he considers himself as a part of America. In the second stanza of the poem, Hughes uses “dark brother” as symbolism to represent the struggling African Americans of 1920s and tells his readers that black people are brothers and equal to the white majority. Also, the word “company” symbolizes to the white superiority over the black people. It also shows a powerful image of a black man being treated like animals or slaves as they were excluded from company and made to eat in the dirty kitchen. But, even though he goes to the kitchen, he says he will “eat well And

grow strong” (789) so that in the future nobody will dare to send him away. This metaphor illuminates a point that even though blacks are sent away when white come to the kitchen, the black brothers will unite and not be defeated but will instead grow stronger and resilient. The third stanza of the poem begins with the word “Tomorrow” which symbolizes a world filled with hope that next day will be better than the current one.

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