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My People by Langston Hughes

My People (edition 2009)

by Langston Hughes, Charles R. Smith Jr. (Illustrator)

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2243951,855 (4.29)2
Title:My People
Authors:Langston Hughes
Other authors:Charles R. Smith Jr. (Illustrator)
Info:Atheneum Books for Young Readers (2009), Hardcover, 40 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Langston Hughes, photography, pride, poems

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My People by Langston Hughes



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Langston Hughes created the book My People with the inspiration of his own family. This book is mainly comprised of real photographs of his family members taken by Charles R. Smith, Jr. The whole book is one quick, but inspiring poem and collection of photographs to depict the glory and pride of being an African American in the world today.

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This book may be short and simple, with few words, but I really enjoyed the lovely photographs and the meaning behind it. I find that the meaning could be harder for younger students to understand, but the pictures and the words could still be inspiring. I really liked that the photographer used a sephia photo color because it makes the pictures dark, but so bold in many ways. It puts a lot of emphasis the family members faces to really express the authors pride and glory in them. I really liked the idea that Langston Hughes wrote this about his family and the pride of being an African American. It really teaches children to be proud of who you are and that everyone is “beautiful.” I also like the poetic style of writing, for example, “the stars are beautiful, so the eyes of my people.” ( )
  BrookeMattingly | Dec 3, 2014 |
I really liked this book. The first thing I liked about it was the meaning behind it. The book was written to celebrate the beauty of African Americans. I think that this is a great basis behind a book. It shows unity and happiness from a certain race and all races should be celebrated. I also liked the words in the book. It was almost written like a poem. One of the lines was, “The night is beautiful, so the faces of my people.” The overall theme of this book is to celebrate the African American race. ( )
  david.endres | Dec 1, 2014 |
My people is a tribute poem to those which Hughes refers to as his people. The poem is illustrated through photographs that are taken in a sepia coloring. The photographer, Smith, interprets the passion and glory of being a black American today.

Poetry can be hard to introduce to a young reader, but Hughes does a great job of doing so with "My People." The book was awarded in 2010 with the Coretta Scott King Book Award which is an award based on the illustrator. The interest level of this book would be for those of the ages of preschool to third grade. Great book to introduce the poetry genre to young readers. ( )
  acahil3 | Nov 2, 2014 |
At first when I read the book My People, I was a little confused as to the meaning of it and why the words were not complete sentences. I had to read the passage "Who Are My People?" in the back of the book to learn that this book has more to it than what meets the eye. This was a poem that was broken up and pictures were added to convey meaning. After understanding that this was a poem, I reread the book and I realized that it is very powerful and I loved it. It has a comparison of different elements from nature. For example, he begins with stating how the night is beautiful and says that so are my people. I think that this is a powerful book that can be encouraging for African American children and people who read it. It can be a sense of empowerment letting them know that all they are different that they are beautiful and that being different in this case is being unique. This book is an easy read with only 33 words and can be read by and to younger children. However, the deeper meaning and understanding of the book may only be able to be understood by children who are a little older. Overall this book recited an amazing poem and had pictures that were of importance for each line of the poem.

A good read for younger children but the content is for older children. ( )
  abenne6 | Oct 3, 2014 |
This was a beautiful ensemble of incredible pictures intertwined with Langston Hughes’ famous poem, “My People”. This is an easy to read poem, but maybe content that cannot truly be understood for younger readers. I think this story is a poetry/picture book for readers more appropriate for 3rd or 5th graders, but younger readers could enjoy the photographs. I think this is a great poem with a central message of pride, self-esteem, and appreciated for your heritage. I loved this book because it was beautifully photographed, and the pictures really enhanced the words of the poem. This is a very empowering book, and I can imagine this book encouraging children to be proud of who they are and where they came from. I also liked the pictures because it is different from your average picture book. I liked that the author included powerful photographs, and I believe these could be just as powerful and engaging to younger readers as illustrations. ( )
  BeckieZimmerman | Apr 7, 2014 |
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To Charles R. Smith, the original, and all of My People
--C.R.S. Jr.
First words
The night is beautiful,
so the faces of my people.
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Disambiguation notice
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Curriculum Connection:
2nd grade Reading Standard: 2. Reading for All Purposes
Concepts and skills students master: 1. Fluent reading depends on specific skills and approaches to understanding strategies when reading v. Identify how word choice (sensory details, figurative language) enhances meaning in poetry.
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Hughes's spare yet eloquent tribute to his people has been cherished for generations. Now, acclaimed photographer Smith interprets this beloved poem in vivid sepia photographs that capture the glory, the beauty, and the soul of being a black American today.… (more)

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