Analysis Of Robert Hayden 's ' John Brown 's Body ' Essay

1028 Words Feb 20th, 2016 null Page
Robert Hayden

Robert Hayden was considered one of the most technically gifted poets in American and African American letters. Some of Hayden’s poetry symbolizes serious concerns of African American social and political circumstances yet his race considers race as a means which one considers the extensive possibilities of language and the life-changing power of art. Robert Hayden was an award-winning poet of voice and lyricism, Hayden’s poetry celebrates human nature (Sanders). Born Asa Bundy Sheffey, he was given up by his parents at an early age to their neighbors, William and Sue Ellen Hayden later renamed him Robert Hayden. Some of Robert Hayden’s work addressed the plight of African Americans using his own childhood experiences as living proof. Some early influences on Hayden 's development as a poet were W.H. Audun, under whom Hayden studied at the University of Michigan, and Stephen Vincent Benet, particularly Benet 's poem "John Brown 's Body." That poem describes the black reaction to General Sherman 's march through Georgia during the Civil War and inspired Hayden to also write of that period of history, creating a series of poems on black slavery and the Civil War that won him a Hopwood Award in 1942. Even though Hayden’s poetry stemmed from his extensive study of American and black histories, many of Hayden’s works were inspired by his adherence to the Baha’i Faith. This universal outlook of the Baha’i caused Hayden to reject any specific race…

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