Why does Hughes use fragments in "Salvation"? What special effect do his fragments create?

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Langston Hughes starts his short story "Salvation" with a sentence followed by a fragment:

I was saved from sin when I was going on thirteen. But not really saved.

His use of a fragment in this case allows him to comment on his experience in retrospect. This fragment undermines his first sentence and adds a sense of irony to the story. The fragment suggests that the story does not end in the narrator's salvation after all.

Later, Hughes writes about children who go up to the altar in church in search of salvation, but he follows with another fragment:

But most of us just sat there.

Again, this fragment adds a sense of irony to the story. While the children are supposed to be heading to the altar in search of salvation, the narrator sits in the pews and nothing happens to him. The sentence fragments in the story also disrupt the flow of the story, making it seem more abrupt. The interrupted flow adds to the sense that the narrator is not experiencing what he had hoped to experience and that his story is not one of neat endings but of disruption and irony.

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