Tuesday, March 05, 2013

News at Eleven: The publicity photo for Langston Hughes' first

collection of poetry, The Weary Blues, shows the poet as a young man, wide-eyed and a little baby-faced, in a bellhop uniform. "He's wearing what I think in those days was--and still is--called the 'monkey suit' of the bellboy . . . this was seen as a way of advertising the young Hughes," says Ward. But while Hughes' publicist felt the need to emphasize the service-industry past of an African-American poet, Ward says the image is touching because Hughes himself shines through the attempt to control his image.

from NPR: For Modern American Poets, A 'Likeness' Could Evolve


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