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Langston Hughes is an important member of a group of poets commonly referred to as part of the Harlem Renaissance. They came to prominence in the 1920s or the Jazz Age and were extremely important for bringing the voice of the African American community into general prominence and adding to American poetry a unique sensibility that fused the African American experience with poetic forms. Hughes was especially influenced by the rhythms and subject matter of jazz and blues, an influence that adds a characteristic set of rhythmic and syntactical features to his work. He is also important for the way he deals with oppression of black people in the United States, but always allows for the redemptive possibilities of art.
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