The Negro Speaks of Rivers | Study Guide

Langston Hughes

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Course Hero. "The Negro Speaks of Rivers Study Guide." Course Hero. 29 Nov. 2017. Web. 17 July 2018. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Negro-Speaks-of-Rivers/>.

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Course Hero. (2017, November 29). The Negro Speaks of Rivers Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved July 17, 2018, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Negro-Speaks-of-Rivers/

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Course Hero. "The Negro Speaks of Rivers Study Guide." November 29, 2017. Accessed July 17, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Negro-Speaks-of-Rivers/.

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Course Hero, "The Negro Speaks of Rivers Study Guide," November 29, 2017, accessed July 17, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Negro-Speaks-of-Rivers/.

The Negro Speaks of Rivers | Narrative Voice

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The speaker in the poem is "the Negro," a collective noun. As the title suggests, the speaker represents the voice of all black people. Here, the voice is somewhere between a preacher's voice and a Negro spiritual. It is oracular, almost biblical.

The tone is not didactic or argumentative; not angry or earnest. The poem avoids anything that tonally suggests politics. Instead, it is an invitation to meditate on racial consciousness and to uplift people of all races.

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