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Ericka Sidbury

on 22 October 2013

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Transcript of Style

The Weary Blues
By Langston Hughes
Nobody Loves You When You're Down and Out
By Bessie Smith
For Example
The style that an author uses influences how we interpret the facts that are presented. Wording and phrasing can tell us about emotions in the scene, the setting, and characters. If you're still not convinced, consider the differences between the following sentences:
He's passed away.
He's sleeping with the fishes.
He died.
He's gone to meet his Maker.
He kicked the bucket.
The version of that sentence that a writer chooses tells us a lot about the situation, the speaker, and the person being spoken to (the audience).
One easy way to understand literary style is to think about fashion styles. Clothes can be formal and dressy, informal and casual, preppy, athletic, and so forth. Literary style is like the clothes that a text puts on. By analogy, the information underneath is like the person's body, and the specific words, structures, and arrangements that are used are like the clothes.
Defining Style
Style in literature is the literary element that describes the ways that the author uses words — the author's word choice, sentence structure, figurative language, and sentence arrangement all work together to establish mood, images, and meaning in the text. Style describes how the author describes events, objects, and ideas.
Langston Hughes
Hughes's poetry offers a transcription of urban life through a portrayal of the speech, habits, attitudes, and feelings of an oppressed people. The poems do more, however, than reveal the pain of poverty. They also illustrate racial pride and dignity. Hughes's poems cling, moreover, to the spoken language.
Musical Influence
Music, in fact, is a central feature of Hughes's poetry. And the kind of music most evident in his work is the blues, an important influence in the work of many modern black writers, especially those associated with the Harlem Renaissance, the flowering of artistic activity among black artists and writers of Harlem in the 1920's. Hughes succeeds in grafting the inflections of the urban black dialect onto the rhythms of the blues.
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