Theme for English B
In the poem, “Theme for English B” by Langston Hughes, he really shows his feelings towards life and his school that he attends. He describes with kind understanding the way he feels about his life, college, and city. Nevertheless, Hughes is trying to help white people understand that we are all the same and how we are all one.
Hughes starts off the poem saying “I wonder if it’s that simple.” (5) Meaning, he really thinks that having a paper come out of you and coming true isn’t always true. Maybe it can be true for all of the white people, but not for him because he is black. Realistically in this time period, if he wrote about blacks having the same rights as whites, then that would not come true in that era.
When he mentions that he is the only colored student in his ...view middle of the document...
When Hughes goes on talking about liking a pipe for Christmas, he’s saying that he likes to relax and be more of a classy person. His choice of music records are Bessie, bop, or Bach because he’s trying to show he belongs to the broader culture. Bessie Smith is a popular black singer that not only blacks like but whites like her as well. “I guess being colored doesn’t make me not like the same things other folks like who are other races.” (25). Hughes says this so people assume that he doesn’t look at color to listen to music.
The speaker then goes on trying to implement how blacks and whites can be part of everything in this world, “But it will be a part of you, instructor. You are white yet a part of me, as I am a part of you. But we are that’s true.” (30). In that sentence he is talking about the color of the paper which is the teacher, but is also talking about the writing on the paper which is his writing. Knowing this means that the paper is part of both of them. He really seems to be combining two voices because he goes from an internal rhyme to an in rhyme. As Hughes goes on saying how he learns from his teacher, he also says that the teacher can learn from him. This means that the teacher can learn from his life although he is white, older, and somewhat more care free. Saying that his teacher is more free means that he is saying not to take your privileges’ for granted.
In the end, Langston Hughes writes this poem to explain to his teacher that we are all similar and how we are all one. I think he wrote what he wrote because he is saying that not everything can come true for a colored person as it can for a white person. Not everyone in this world is lucky enough to have a page come out of them and turn it into reality.