The poem “I, Too” by Langston Hughes is a poem that talks about racial segregation in the 20th century when African Americans faced judgement towards nearly everything that they did. African Americans had very little civil rights, and were forced to work, eat, live and do nearly everything separate from white people.In this poem, the poet is trying to express his feelings about how America tries to cover up and ignore racial discrimination. This theme is expressed in many different poems, movies, and even songs, including a new pop song called “This is America” by Childish Gambino, where he sings and dances while chaos explodes in the background to show how America can ignore the problems we have in our society.
The tone changes throughout the poem. In the first line, the tone is patriotic. The line, “I, too, sing America,” indicates the national anthem, and symbolizes unity throughout the nation. In the next stanza, the tone is of anger and strength. The man is enraged at how he is treated, but he knows he is strong enough to fight back. This is shown in the line, “But I laugh, and eat well, and grow strong.” The following stanza’s tone is of warning. The man warns the people, that he will become powerful, and that no one will dare to harm him in the future. Then, in the next stanza, the tone changes once again. The man is much calmer and speaks proudly that one day “they’ll see how beautiful I am, And be ashamed.” In the last line, the tone is once again patriotic.