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What literary devices does Langston Hughes use in 'Let America Be America Again?I know...

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kltpugharbor | Student, Grade 9

Posted March 4, 2012 at 9:03 PM via web

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What literary devices does Langston Hughes use in 'Let America Be America Again?

I know what the poem is about, the tone etc. but can't find more than repetition and extended metaphor here.

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mizzwillie | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted March 4, 2012 at 10:29 PM (Answer #1)

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In the poem "Let America Be America Again" by Langston Hughes, he uses several literary devices.  Personification is used when he writes that America or the dream "be the pioneer on the plain" which is giving human characteristics to a non human idea as dreams cannot be a human pioneer.  Another example is the dream with "its mighty daring sings" as we all know that dreams do not sing.  Alliteration is used to describe people like him who are "humble, hungry and mean.  The two consecutive H's are alliteration. Hughes also uses end rhyme such as stanza one where "be" and "free" rhyme.  Hughes makes the reader understand that this dream is one that has not existed for him but has only heard about and is yet hopeful that it will become his.

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