Autor: yan000 24 December 2009
Words: 292 | Pages: 2
Langston Hughes uses subtle yet powerful imagery to illustrate the plight of a black family in a white dominated society in his one-act play â€œSoul Gone Homeâ€.
The pennies on Ronnieâ€™s eyes mentioned at the beginning and end of the play refer to an ancient custom and also to the poverty that can blind one in a capitalist world. Wealth is only mentioned in a monetary sense, â€œWhen I had money, ainâ€™t I fed you?â€ (Hughes, 1271) and â€œyou said you ainâ€™t got no money for milk and eggsâ€ (Hughes, 1272). Wealth of a spiritual or emotional nature is never mentioned.
As Kolin and Curley point out in â€œHughes Soul Gone Homeâ€, color is also a reoccurring symbol throughout the play (1274). Ronnieâ€™s description is a â€œdark boy in a torn white shirtâ€ (Hughes, 1271). â€œHe rolls his big white eyesâ€ (Hughes, 1271) at his mother. Even the milk and eggs mentioned as lacking in his diet are a subtle reference to the white society that has stunted his growth as a black man. The â€œMen in the white coatsâ€ (Hughes, 1273) who carry Ronnieâ€™s body away are yet another figurative expression of a white society claiming another black victim.
Langston Hughes was a prolific writer who used his literary influence to bring the plight of blacks to the attention of society.
Curley, Maureen, and Philip C. Kolin. â€œHughes Soul Gone Home.â€ Approaching
Literature. Ed. Jack Ridl, Peter Schakel. Boston, MA: Stratford Publishing Inc.,
Hughes, Langston. â€œSoul Gone Home.â€ Approaching Literature. Ed. Jack Ridl, Peter
Schakel. Boston, MA: Stratford Publishing Services Inc., 2005. 1270-1273.