What Impact Did Langston Hughes Have On The Harlem Renaissance

The Harlem Renaissance

The Harlem Renaissance was an influential period of African American intellectual, artistic, and social thought spurred in the early 20th century. It was a post-World War I period characterized by a renewed sense of identity and social justice within the African American community, a celebration of African American culture and its influence on other Americans. The movement is usually associated with the 1920s and 1930s.

The Harlem Renaissance was a result of the Great Migration, a period of time during which unprecedented numbers of African Americans moved to the North in search of a better life and greater freedom than allowed in the South. This cultural and economic boom brought together writers, poets, musicians, visual artists, and scholars in ways that had not been seen before, creating a powerful outburst of creativity and artistic expression.

The Harlem Renaissance stimulated the Renewal of African American literature, music and dance, and a much broader integration of African American culture into the mainstream of American society. It also encouraged African Americans to express themselves more fully, assert their identity, and recognize the full impact of their own heritage. This influence extended beyond the boundaries of Harlem and has served as a source of inspiration for African Americans throughout the United States.

Langston Hughes

One of the most influential writers of the Harlem Renaissance was Langston Hughes, who was born in 1902. Hughes was the premier poet of the movement and is widely recognized as one of the greatest American writers of the twentieth century. His writings were celebrated for their insight into the African American experience, as well as their vibrant and innovative use of language.

Hughes was more than just a poet; he was an influential social commentator, an advocate for justice, and an inspiring leader of a vastly changing America. He was an integral part of the flowering of African American literary and cultural creativity, known as the New Negro Movement, which had its roots in the Harlem Renaissance. He challenged the prevailing notions of “Negro inferiority” through his work.

Impact of Langston Hughes

Using his writing, Langston Hughes addressed the issues of poverty and racism that had been long ignored by the majority of white Americans. He wrote about the struggles and hardships of African Americans, such as the experience of living in poverty, racism, and prejudice. He championed racial equality and spoke out against segregation and Jim Crow laws. His writing is particularly remembered for its advocacy of economic equality, as well as its celebration of black culture.

Langston Hughes had a tremendous impact on the Harlem Renaissance. His poetry and prose inspired a generation of black writers, musicians, and visual artists. He was instrumental in bringing the experience of black life to the mainstream of American literature. By celebrating the beauty and dignity of black life, Hughes provided a stimulating example of what was possible for African Americans during this period.

The messages of hope and empowerment in his writing fuelled the fire of the Harlem Renaissance, leading to greater creativity, social change and civil rights. He also made his own unique contribution to the movement, bridging the gap between intellectualism and popular culture. His influence continues to be felt today in the works of later writers, including Maya Angelou, James Baldwin, Alice Walker and Toni Morrison.

Langston Hughes and the Arts

Hughes’ influence also extended to the visual arts. Through his writings, he helped to popularize African American folk art and gave a voice to the vernacular. He put African American music, art, dance and theatre on the world stage, and is credited with bringing jazz and blues to a broader, more diverse audience than ever before.

Langston Hughes’ involvement in the Harlem Renaissance was not limited to literature and the visual arts. He also used his voice to raise awareness about the need for political and social justice. In his plays, poems, and essays, he championed the rights of black citizens and called for an end to discrimination and racism. He was an inspirational leader, who worked relentlessly to ensure that African Americans had the same opportunities, rights and freedoms as other Americans.

Legacy of Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes was the force behind the Harlem Renaissance, the movement which not only revived African American culture but also brought it to a global audience. His poetry and prose brought together different communities and inspired people to fight for equality, justice and freedom. His influence continues to this day, as his ideas and writings remain relevant in a world that is still facing issues of racism and discrimination.

In addition to his influential writings, Langston Hughes was an international figure. He was an inspiration to African Americans in the United States and around the world, and his legacy will live on as an important part of the Harlem Renaissance and African American culture.

Langston Hughes and Social Change

Langston Hughes was a powerful advocate for social justice during the Harlem Renaissance. He spoke out against discrimination and pushed for the rights of African Americans to be respected. He was a prolific writer who used his platform to raise awareness of the issues facing his community, such as poverty, racism, and inequality. Through his work, he inspired generations of activists, writers, and thinkers to fight for a better world.

In his writings, Hughes condemned the persecution of minority groups and the hypocrisy of a society which purported to be egalitarian yet still maintained a caste system based on skin color. His passionate voice helped bring attention to the injustices of oppression and paved the way for the civil rights movement.

Langston Hughes was one the most influential writers of the Harlem Renaissance and it was his work that helped to spark the movement. His writings highlighted the experiences of African Americans and called for an end to discrimination and inequality. He was a vocal advocate for social justice, and his legacy continues to inspire people to this day.

Langston Hughes and Education

Langston Hughes was also a pioneer in the field of education. His writings encouraged African Americans to embrace their heritage and to strive for equal access to educational opportunities. Through his work, he supported the education of African Americans, which was a critical part of the civil rights movement.

In his writings, Hughes explored issues of race, gender, and class. He highlighted the importance of education and encouraged African Americans to take pride in their own culture. He also emphasized the power of language and literacy to promote human understanding and bridge racial divides. His idea of education was not only about acquiring knowledge, but also about finding a deeper understanding of one’s self and one’s place in the world.

Langston Hughes had a lasting impact on the education of African Americans during the Harlem Renaissance. His work encouraged people to celebrate their cultural heritage, seek out educational opportunities and strive for equality. His influence is still felt today, and his writings are an important part of the African American literary canon.


Langston Hughes was one of the most important figures of the Harlem Renaissance and his influence is still felt today. Through his writings, he shed light on the experiences of African Americans and called for an end to discrimination and inequality. He was an inspirational leader who championed the rights of African Americans, and his writings continue to inspire people all over the world. His legacy is a reminder that one person can have a tremendous impact, and his influence will continue to be felt for many years to come.

Dannah Hannah is an established poet and author who loves to write about the beauty and power of poetry. She has published several collections of her own works, as well as articles and reviews on poets she admires. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English, with a specialization in poetics, from the University of Toronto. Hannah was also a panelist for the 2017 Futurepoem book Poetry + Social Justice, which aimed to bring attention to activism through poetry. She lives in Toronto, Canada, where she continues to write and explore the depths of poetry and its influence on our lives.

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