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In "I Hear America Singing" by Walt Whitman and "I Too Sing America" by Langston Hughes, the two poets present parallel views of the American experience.
Whitman’s poem is joyous and celebratory; Hughes’ poem is more skeptical, but it is not without hope.
This handout of thorough and precise questions is ready to go with minimal prep on your part.
Questions encourage close reading, analysis of poetic elements, as well as deeper thinking and discussion about the themes and big ideas of the poem.
There are also prompts for in-class writing as well as for longer assessment.
These poems could be used with many texts that deal with the American Dream, race, power, or class. Suggestions include: To Kill A Mockingbird, Their Eyes were Watching God, Death of a Salesman, The Great Gatsby, Invisible Man, A Raisin in the Sun, The Grapes of Wrath, and Of Mice and Men