Even a reason for their American Dreams being

Even though people of color were still able to achieve some sort of the American Dream, it wasn’t what they wanted. Yes, things did get better for African Americans as time went on, but during this time in the 1950s the version of the American Dreams they got was more like something they were settling for. Times were very different back then. Minerbrook says how, “It’s… the persistent feeling of being unwelcomed. It’s racism with a smile” (Minerbrook 27). Of course, this “racism with a smile” is kind of a perfect description for this time-period because it was when segregation was still a thing, but things were supposedly “getting better.” People were polite, but would be disrespectful at the same time, which in my opinion could really mess with anyone’s mind. Especially since “segregation makes oppression easy and efficient” (Minerbrook 28); African Americans had been oppressed for so long that it could most definitely be a reason for their American Dreams being either unattainable or settling for a less than version. Langston Hughes’ poem, “Harlem”, shoes the psychological impact of having your dreams be deferred, based on the racism and discrimination that was taking place during the time that Hughes wrote this poem. Even though this is an old poem, the words that he wrote will forever be powerful and have significance even in todays world. Hughes wrote this poem in 1951, when the Civil Rights Movement was slowly beginning to come into play. In the last line of the poem, “Or does it explode?” (Poetry Foundation, line 11), Hughes shows the metaphor that he was trying to show throughout the whole poem. He is saying how a postponed dream, a dream deferred can cause violence or emotional reactions or even psychological issues. The state of the country was much like how it was in Fences, filled with discrimination and racism. The was a lot of racism that ended up tainting Troy’s achievements and in turn ends up tearing apart his family. The racism and discrimination that Troy had faced when he played baseball, “the colored guy got to be twice as good before he get on the team” (Fences 36). This is the reason why he tries to protect his son because he doesn’t want him to feel all of that pain, but this ruins their relationship instead. Troy tries but he feels as if he has been standing on “first base for eighteen years” (Fences 67) because his own dreams have been lost, but he doesn’t realize that he is keeping his son from trying to fulfill dreams of his own. The feelings that Troy has is what makes him ruin his relationship with Rose too. He tries “to live decent… to live a clean… hard… useful life” (Fences 66) despite all of his broken relationships and the struggles he has faced. But as Wilson ends up showing, the belief if the American Dream has some long-term effects on Troy and his family.