I, Too, Am America

by Langston Hughes

Other authorsBryan Collier (Illustrator)
Hardcover, 2012





Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (2012), 40 pages


Presents the popular poem by one of the central figures in the Harlem Renaissance, highlighting the courage and dignity of the African American Pullman porters in the early twentieth century.

User reviews

LibraryThing member gradschool14
An inspiring tale of the strength of many in the face of mistreatment and suffering. Told beautifully by the pictures as well as the words.
LibraryThing member huertaen
This beginning facts/poetry book was extremely fascinating for me to read and appreciate. The illustrators use of mixed media was completely effective in adding to the story that took place. It details the story of pullman on trains in the 19th century of America. Through the use of a deconstructed American flag in nearly all of the scenes, along with a clear progression through the timeline of America, the reader could see the incorporation of African American's in to society as more welcome citizens. Upon first reading it I did not pick up on these distinctions, it was only after I read the illustrator's note that I was able to fully interpret and understand the storyline. USE: Poetry, History, definite classroom use… (more)
LibraryThing member hkent32
Short Description: This is a very well-illustrated book of Langston Hughe's poem, about how the color of someone's skin doesn't change the fact that they are american.

Personal Reflection: Awesome illustrations , unlike any I have seen with this poem. It really brought a picture of what the poem was telling us, and added a face to the voice in the poem. I liked the use of mixed media to create this book.… (more)
LibraryThing member psuchilit14
This poem provides powerful message to its readers. that what we see on the outside does not determine whether or not we are American.
LibraryThing member Jill.Haner
Sometimes I feel bad about not liking a book. This is one of those times. I like Langston Hughes' poetry, so I thought I would like this book. But the poem is too short for the number of pages in the book. The words he just lets hang on pages don't always resonate with the picture its on. It just wasn't very good.
I feel bad because the artwork was great. The symbolism in the colors and the flags over minorities (mostly African American), bringing them into America, that was brilliant. The forward by Collier and his idea of making a whole book about the ports on the train they could never be a passenger on is a fantastic idea and I wish these pictures would have been reflective of that story. This is why I feel bad. This book has great intentions on helping kids of all colors feel a part of this great nation, and Collier has a great idea for a new book, but I feel like this one just falls flat.… (more)
LibraryThing member Renee.Brandon
Illustrations were a big part to this book. Hidden meanings with the images. Hughes was a wonderful poet. This will be one I will be sharing with my students.
LibraryThing member alyson
Beautiful illustration of Hughes' poem. I don't think the Illustrator's Note needed to tell us so much - the illustrations do a fine job on their own.
LibraryThing member davetomscholten
I, Too, Am American is a very short poem by Langston Hughes that is put to drawings by award winning illustrator Bryan Collier. It is a moving poem stretched out over 10-12 pages, with just a few word on each page. The drawings are of African American people working in the kitchen of a train. The poem is about the coming age when African Americans will be able to eat at the table instead of being banished to the kitchen to eat.… (more)
LibraryThing member Phil9
I, Too, Am America is a poem written by Langston Hughes. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, many former African American slaves were hired to work on the railroads as porters on the sleeping cars. This poem can teach children to acknowledge and honor the courage and worth of the Pullman porters (a group not typically discussed in elementary school) as they face racism and poor working conditions. The words and images in this book sweep the reader from a train to a cotton field in the old South, to a modern city. The last page shows the determination of African Americans for a better future. The author state, "I, too, am America.' The moving image shows a boy peering through the American flag into the future. The poem itself is short, but the message is extremely powerful. I think it would spark a rich discussion about human rights and respect for diversity.… (more)
LibraryThing member rachelmuegge
Beautifully illustrated. The pictures are full of meaning. This book has few words but sends a strong message of equality and strength.
LibraryThing member Ms.Kunz
The art in this book is truly marvelous and would be a great one to use to illustrate the concept of symbolism. Love the way the boy on the cover is peering through the stripes of the flag like he's looking through slats of a window blind.
LibraryThing member Abdullah9000
These poems are about multiculturalism, and about getting away from the idea that there is just one type of American.
LibraryThing member gmustain
Langston Hughes' poem i, Too, Am America has been transformed into a beautiful picture book for many to read. I think that this interpretation of the famous poem helps bring it to a wider audience than it normally would. This powerful poem is presented beautifully in this book with wonderful illustrations that accompany the prose. I studied Langston Hughes during my undergraduate studies and I had never known about his poem being transformed into this book. I think that it is such a great idea to use for young readers.… (more)
LibraryThing member kberryman44
I read this book a few years ago and fell in love with Collier expressive and realistic style of illustration. Moreover, he took a very well known poem, and made it fit into a contemporary context. The words and images are simple, but powerful, and I think Langston Hughes would have loved what Collier did with his poem.
LibraryThing member herethere
I am very much into books that take on one poem and make it wonderful and accessible. Langston Huges' words come alive with these illustrations. A classroom must.
LibraryThing member APatricia
The illustrations are produced in mixed media; oil paint, collage and cutouts.
LibraryThing member amandahnorman
This would be a great book to share during a study of the Civil Rights Movement or during Black History Month. Truly moving.
LibraryThing member MeaghanRyan
A beautifully illustrated book written with the poetry of Langston Hughes.
LibraryThing member lg503
This is a very short poem, but with a lot of meaning. This is the story of an American boy dealing with the African American segregation and hoping that he will be accepted in the United States.
LibraryThing member kbartholomew1
Illustrator, Bryan Collier, has created captivating images that reflect the words of Langston Hughes. Langston Hughes is the writer of the poem, I, Too, Sing America, which centers around the need for blacks to be recognized as Americans. The pages depict the struggles many people of color faced during the Civil Rights movement; Collier has also woven the American flag into the illustrations. Collier blends the poetic words of Langston Hughes with idealistic illustrations that emit the promise of equality.… (more)


Original language


Physical description

40 p.; 9 inches


1442420081 / 9781442420083


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