What is the meaning of the poem America by Claude McKay?
‘America’ by Claude McKay balances ideas of loving and hating the United States. McKay explores the good parts of the country, the strength and vigor it contains as well as the bad. Yet, he also comments on the ‘bitterness’, violence, and corruption the country is known for.
What is the theme of America by Claude McKay?
It expresses the Jamaican-born McKay’s ambivalent feelings about the United States (his adopted country), acknowledging the nation’s vitality while criticizing its racism and violence. At the end of the poem, the speaker prophetically looks ahead to a time when this seemingly invincible country will fall to ruin.
What does bread of bitterness mean?
When he states “Although she feeds me bread of bitterness” (1), the speaker is telling the reader that he or she depends on America for his or her bread as a child depends on its mother. This led to bitterness among the Southern blacks.
What type of sonnet is America by Claude McKay?
McKay’s poem is a 14 line “Shakespearean” sonnet about America—though we only know that from the title, as McKay never references America in the poem itself.
What impact did Claude McKay have?
In addition to giving a voice to black immigrants, McKay was one of the first African-American poets of the Harlem Renaissance. As such, he influenced later poets, including Langston Hughes. He paved the way for black poets to discuss the conditions and racism that they faced in their poems.
What does it mean by the American Dream?
The American dream is the belief that anyone, regardless of where they were born or what class they were born into, can attain their own version of success in a society in which upward mobility is possible for everyone.
How does the speaker feel about America?
The speaker has a love-hate relationship with America, so he chooses to be optimistic, but also realistic about America. The speaker loves America and chooses not to focus on those things that he does not like and cannot change. Read the following lines from the poem.
Is Claude McKay African American?
Claude McKay, (born September 15, 1889, Nairne Castle, Jamaica, British West Indies—died May 22, 1948, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.), Jamaican-born poet and novelist whose Home to Harlem (1928) was the most popular novel written by an American black to that time.
What is the tone of the poem America by Walt Whitman?
This short poem is a reassertion of the poet’s faith in the destiny of the American nation. It demonstrates his love of the masses, his devotion to democracy, and his belief that in responding to the call of a democratic process, America is fulfilling a spiritual need of her people.
When was America by Claude McKay written?
“America” was first published in The Liberator in December of 1921. It appeared in McKay’s collection Harlem Shadows (Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1922).