Chapter 1 Narration



E-Text Salvation

A Bruce R. Schwartz film based on Langston Hughes’s autobiography 55 minutes

"I was saved from sin when I was going on 13. But not really saved. It happened like

this . . "

So begins this powerful dramatization of "Salvation," Langston Hughes' eloquent

autobiographical story which illustrates how his aunt's well-meaning efforts to bring

him into the spiritual fold resulted in a moral crisis. Calmly waiting for Jesus to

appear in the hot, crowded church, young Langston anticipation changes to confusion

and disillusion when pressured to choose between being true to himself or fulfilling

the expectations of the preacher, his aunt, and the rest of the congregation (30 minutes).


*to bring the young lambs to the fold

to bring the young children to Christ and into the membership of the church

Holy Spirit

In mainstream Christianity, the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost is one of the three divine
persons of the Holy Trinity who make up the single substance of God; that is, the
Spirit is considered to act in concert with and share an essential nature with
God the Father and God the Son (Jesus).


Disillusion—distroy the pleasant but mistaken beliefs or ideas of sb 醒悟


Salvation (Langston Hughes)

Saved From Innocence In most people’s lives, there comes a point

in time where their perception changes abruptly; a single moment

in their life when they come to a sudden realization. In Langston

Hughes’ “Salvation”, contrary to all expectations, a young Hughes

Preconceptions are almost always trouble in this life, but often disastrous in a

religious context, especially when children naively take on adult beliefs at an age

when they usually do not question their elders.

Preconception—opinion formed in advance and not based on experience or

knowledge 先入之見

Langston Hughes' 'Salvation' / Disillusionment

The conflict between Langston's expectations of what would happen at the revival

meeting and his aunt's expectations for him caused his ultimate disillusionment.

75Thematic Readings

Why does Hughes cry when he gets back to his room? How does his

aunt react?  How can the title of this essay be seen as ironic?

What salvation occurs?

"Salvation" takes place in the rural Midwest, just about at the start of
World War I. Do some research about revival meetings and preaching
going on at that time in that area. How did your research project deepen
your understanding of the essay?

Here is Hughes's influential poem "Dream Deferred" in etext. Can you find the

phrase A Raisin in the Sun anywhere else online?

“Dream Deferred”

…on its emotionally straining promise that he would see Jesus. However, he seems

almost as disappointed in himself because he lied to his Aunt as he is that his Aunt

appears to have lied to him. It is also an indictment of the hypocrisy of many of the

members of the church who joined the church just to please those watching.

Langston Hughes was put in a dilemma position where to please the people around

him have to step into there beliefs. This paper is the property of

Copyright ?2002-2003

Langston Hughes' 'Theme for English B' / 'Coloredness'

The paper looks particularly at the difference between the stark dictionary definition

of the word 'colored' and how it functions for Hughes as a badge of inferiority placed

on him by white people.

Modernism In African-American Poetry

A 5 page analysis and research paper which examines three representative poems

from leaders of the Harlem Renaissance to illustrate the principle of modernism in

black poetry. These poems are: 'Mulatto' by Langston Hughes; 'Incident' by Countee

Cullen; and 'He was a man' by Sterling Brown. The writer first discusses what

experts have said regarding the definition of modernism and then examines how

these statements can be applied to each poem.

The poems are 'Dream Deferred' (also known as 'Harlem') and 'The Negro Speaks

of Rivers.' In discussing these poems the paper illustrates the realities that they all

share, which is essentially the notion of dreams and harsh realities that kill those

dreams, in relationship to the African American race. They are also all dreams that

inherently speak of strength in the face of those harsh realities.