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"As I grew older"

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Manuela Jaramillo

on 12 December 2013

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Transcript of "As I grew older"

"As I Grew Older"
By: Langston Hughes

Soundtrack
First Stanza
IT was a long time ago
I have almost forgotten my dream.
But it was there then,
In front of me,
Bright like a sun —
My dream
Second Stanza
Third Stanza
Fourth Stanza
I lie down in the shadow.
No longer the light of my dream before me,
Above me.
Only the thick wall.
Only the shadow

Fifth Stanza
My hands!
My dark hands!
Break through the wall!
Find my dream!
Help me to shatter this darkness,
To smash this night,
To break this shadow
Into a thousand lights of sun,
Into a thousand whirling dreams
Of sun!
Initial Questions
1. What is the point of view?
First person singular " I"
2. Who is the speaker?
The speaker is an african american who is suffering from discrimination
3. What is the situation?
An african american had a dream and a purpose, every time he is growing, he realizes that because of his condition, his dreams may never be accomplished.
What is the Poem's setting?
The setting of the poem can be described as the African American society in the era where discrimination took place in the United States.

What is the conflict of the poem ?
And the wall rose,
Rose slowly,
Slowly,
Between me and my dream.
Rose until it touched the sky
The wall.

Shadow.
I am black.

My hands!
My dark hands!
IMAGERY
And then the wall rose,
Rose slowly,
Slowly,
Between me and my dream.
Rose until it touched the sky—
The wall.
Shadow.
I am black
Context Clues
Quotes:
" Shadow.
I am black"
" No longer the light of my dream before me"
The second, third and part of the last stanza describe the conflict of the poem. The conflict is racism, how hard it is for an African American to accomplish a dream. The speaker is describing how it was when he was small. He thought his dream will actually come true. As the speaker got older he describes how a "wall" rose between him and his dream. He describes how as he got older he realized how hard is for an African American to accomplish a dream in the United States.
Conflict
Simile
"Bright like a sun"
Metaphor
Only the thick wall
Only the shadow
Hyperbole
"Rose until it touched the sky-"
Metaphor
"Into a thousand lights of sun "
Metaphor
"Help me to shatter this darkness,
To smash this night
Effect of the Imagery
The first stanza of the poem introduces the readers to a hopeful environment. He says his dream was in front of him, “Bright like a sun”. The poem suddenly changes giving an image of sadness when a wall stands between the author and his dreams, “And then the wall rose, Rose slowly,Slowly, Between me and my dream. Rose until it touched the sky”. The author represents the obstacles that come between he and his dreams with a wall. One of these obstacles is the racist society that would not let African Americans do what they wanted. The image is reinforced by the author in the fourth stanza, “Above me. Only the thick wall. Only the shadow.My hands! My dark hands!”. Later the author represents the idea of fighting against the racist society giving an image of hope again, “Break through the wall! Find my dream!”.
Sound Devices
Assonance
Vowel Sounds
dr
ea
m, m
e

Repetition/ Anaphora
"
Only the
thick wall
Only the
shadow"
"
Into a thousand
lights of sun

Into a thousand
whirling dream"
Repetition
rose, rose
sun, sun
wall, wall
Rhyme Scheme
The poem has no write scheme because it uses the style of free write
Effect of the sound devices
The main sound device that the author uses is repetition. He uses this device to emphasize on the main themes /topics of the poem. The repetition of wall means that the white society creates a barrier in the speaker´s life. The repetition of dark, and black emphasizes that the speaker has colored skin. And the repetition of sun means that there was a dream.
What is the tone of the poem?
Starting tone
It was a long time ago.
I have almost forgotten my dream.
But it was there then,
In front of me,
Bright
like a
sun—
My dream.
Ending tone
And then the wall rose,
Rose slowly,
Slowly,
Between me and my dream.
Rose until it touched the sky—
The wall.

The poem starts with a happy and hopeful tone
due to positive connotations of the words
The ending tone of the poem is depressed because the speaker realizes that society creates a barrier because he is black.
The tone is depressed because of the negative connotations of the words
What is the significance of the title?
As I Grew Older
The title means that when you are a child you do not know the problems of the world and you think everything is perfect. When the speaker grew up, he lost his ignorance and he discovered that he lived in a racist society where he was colored. That was an impediment for his life and a dream he always had.
Summary
This poem is about African Americans and how they were treated. They could not do much because they were afraid to stand against white people. The wall represent the white society and how they were stopping the speaker from accomplishing his dream. He wanted to dtand out for his dream and fight for what he wanted
What is the poet´s purpose?
The title implies that something changed as he grew older. Based on the poem, the title represents how he realizes how hard it can be to reach his dreams because of his skin color and the racist society of that time.
Full transcript