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"What happened to a Dream Deferred ?" - OIB Essay

Dissertation : "What happened to a Dream Deferred ?" - OIB Essay. Recherche parmi 236 000+ dissertations

Par   •  13 Février 2019  •  Dissertation  •  1 743 Mots (7 Pages)  •  234 Vues

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What happens to a dream deferred?

“Hold fast to your dreams for without them, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly” said Langston Hughes, in his Montage of Dream Deferred, 1951. This quotation explores the true meaning of one of the theme presented in two works, the play, Intimate Apparel (2004), by Lynn Nottage, and, the poem, “A Dream Deferred”, by Langston Hughes written in 1951, both discussing on the belief of dreams. While Langston Hughes asks rhetorical questions, regarding the deferred dreams of the African-American people, using shocking images and a negative tone, in Intimate Apparel, Esther, is an African-American woman of 35, living in the down of the 19th century. She dreams to own a beauty parlor and being married and loved by a caring husband, always enlightened by the glow of hope. In this way, the notion of the two works, are different. To Hughes, have a dream implies negative aspects and can lead to destruction, while for Esther, accept fate, never give up and always believe hope, require a dream stills realizable, even it is vowed to fail. Thus, a dream can be deferred and end, but also be fulfilled if the person always believes in hope, and never abandons.

To begin with, the poem A Dream Deferred of Langston Hughes, starts with one question, “What happens to a dream deferred?” and being answered by other questions, which are, therefore, rhetorical, and where each one present a negative image of dreams. In this way, an important dream could seriously and negatively affects the speaker.

“Does it dry up like a raisin in the Sun”, the first image of the poem, represents dreams in a negative way because, if the speaker waits a long time, he will not see his dreams being fulfilled. Indeed, Hughes compares dreams to “a raisin in the Sun”, using simile, “like”, and imagery, “a raisin in the Sun”. However, a raisin is a dried grape, but a fresh fruit which is delicious, feeding and tastes good. But, as the raisin is under the Sun, the fruit became even drier and looses all the previous qualities it had and is no more useful. On the perspective of a dream, it could be interpreted, even more negatively. For this reason, the raisin would be someone, full of dreams and vitality, possessing a goal in his life which is, realize his dreams. But as another person, represented here as the Sun, stole his dream and, at the same time, his goals, which were vital to him, the stolen person became fruitless and does not have any dreams to continue life as it was. He took unreasonable time and it was persistently long for him to fulfill his dreams, that someone stole them. In this way, he is forced to abandon them and to continue life without his dreams, because he waited and promptly discarded them, and never relayed on hope.

In the same way, the second image, “Or fester like a sore – And then run?”, proposes a negative aspect of dreams of the speaker, who is forced to abandon his dreams, because it infected him seriously. Moreover, Hughes uses the same simile, “like”, and imagery, “fester like a sore” and “And then run?”, in order to compare a dream to a festered sore. Undoubtedly, when a person has a serious injury, no expectations the sore will takes an enduring time to heal. Furthermore, it is festered, and, as a consequence, it has been seriously infected and damaged and takes time and harshness to leave. As it is the dream which created the sore and which now, infected it even deeper, the speaker is progressively overwhelmed by his dreams, starting to defer on the wrong path. Equally, like a poison which weakens him and makes him achieve the contrary he had to accomplish in order to fulfill his dreams. But at the end, he took care of his sore, learnt his mistakes and the festering has gone, after a consequent time. In this way, he lost his dreams, as the injury left, and cannot take the wrong path, as the infection has also gone. As the speaker didn’t see the sore being festered, he took him much more time to understand he was on the deferred path and forced him to completely stop his dreams, to not affect himself. He could continue, more carefully, but decides to abandon his goals, because he did not believe hope.

Besides, the following image, “Does it stink like rotten meat? Or crust and sugar over – like a syrupy sweet?” , wants to expose the negative aspect of dreams, explaining, if the speaker let them rot or crust, he could not be able to fulfill them after. Again, Hughes uses simile, “like”, and imagery “stink like rotten meat” and “like a syrupy sweet?” in order to compare dreams to rotten meat and the crusting of a syrupy sweet. By all means, meat is a strong food and syrupy is a sweet food, which is tasteful for anyone but, as both of them stood a prolonged time not used, meat became rotten, and sugar starts to crust. Effectively, pointless, as it is seriously damaged, the same representation of a deferred dream. Exactly, when

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