Gwendolyn Brooks

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Thematically there are many similarities between Hughes and Brooks, but what makes her poetry different?

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Both poets wrote of the lives of African Americans and were able to capture the feelings and surroundings of African American narrators. One might argue, however, that Brooks's poetry was at times more political and forceful than that of Hughes. For example, her later volume In the Mecca, published in 1968, shows the growth of her political militancy in response to living in the United States as a Black woman.

The titular poem is about a large building that occupies an entire block in an African American neighborhood of Chicago. A young African American girl in the run-down Mecca is lost, and her mother searches for her. Her mother finds the girl, Pepita, murdered, and Brooks writes of this...

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