The Harlem Renaissance : A Movement Of Social And Artistic Advancement

1482 Words Mar 23rd, 2015 6 Pages
The Harlem Renaissance was a movement of social and artistic advancement that defined an era for African-Americans, not only in the United States, but around the world. The movement also laid the foundations for an entirely different future for African-Americans living in the United States. However, this racial progress would not have been possible without the imaginative genius that grew from writers, poets, and playwrights within the African-American communities. Among these historic figures was the “O. Henry of Harlem” (New York Times, 1967), Langston Hughes, accomplished poet, novelist, playwright, essayist and an all-around artistic master. Hughes was a central figure in the Harlem Renaissance that overtook African-American communities in the 1920s, creating and popularizing some of the common themes of the era. His writing also reached different people across the United States and the globe, expanding the boundaries of the movement, as well as fundamentally changing the perceptions and legacy of what was the Harlem Renaissance. Langston Hughes was not only an active participant in the Harlem Renaissance; he was at the forefront of the development of the movement, the expression of its message, and the methods of artistic communication. Hughes’s works attempted to depict the central figure in his works, the African-American of the day, in his startling, and sometimes horrifying reality, as well as the shameful, but not so distant past. Henry Louis Gates discusses the…

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