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Ananya Kumar

on 5 March 2014

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" I dream a world where man
No other man can scorn,
Where love will bless the Earth
And peace its path adorn"

I love these beautiful words from my poem, " I Dream a World". I wrote more than 60 books, including poems, novels, short stories, plays, children's poetry, musicals, operas, and autobiographies during my lifetime.
Langston Hughes
A Master of
American Verse

Today, I am going to talk to you about my life events and accomplishments. I was born on February,1, 1902, in Joplin, Missouri. I was the great- great grandson of Charles Henry Langston. Charles was the brother of John Mercer Langston, who was the 1st black American to be elected into Public Office in 1885.
My father's name was James Nathaniel Hughes and my mother's name was Caroline Mercer Langston. My parents split up when I was very young, and my father moved to Mexico.
I lived in Kansas. I started writing poems in 8th grade and was selected as class poet. After that, when I was 14, I moved to Cleveland. I graduated from Central High school in 1920.
After graduation, I came to Mexico to live with my father. Then I came to New York to attend Columbia University so I could fulfill my father's wishes.
I left Columbia University in 1922, but I continued writing poems.
My Humble Accomplishments
My first poem , " The Negro Speaks of Rivers", was published in Crisis Magazine in 1921.
I was awarded the first prize for my poem "The Weary Blues" in Opportunity magazine literary contest in 1926.
My first book "The Weary Blues" was published in 1926.
My 2nd poetry collection "Fine Clothes to Jews" was published in 1927.
I also got scholarship as a result of my poetry at Lincoln University from where I graduated with BA in 1929

My Early Life
My Passion
Shortly after graduation, I published my first Novel "Not Without Laughter".
I earned the Harmon Gold Medal for literature.
My first short story collection "The Ways of White Folks" was published in 1934.
I was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship in 1935.
My First play "Mulatto" also opened in 1935 and was performed on Broadway 373 times.

My Humble Accomplishments - Continued

The Rosenwald Fellowship in 1940.
An honorary "Litt. D." in 1943.
American Academy of Arts and Letters Grant in 1947.
Anisfield-Wolf Book award for "Simple Takes a Wife" based on Harlem character Jesse B. Simple's life.
Spingarn Medal for outstanding achievement by a black American from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

A Few More Awards
Celebration of Life

After my death in 1967, they changed my residence into a landmark.
Opened schools and colleges in my name.
The image of my face was put in Black Heritage series of stamps.
City College of New York launched "Langston Hughes Medal"

My Message to Young Learners
"Hold fast to dreams
For if Dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly

Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow"
Full transcript