The scholars who have undertaken to contribute to this volume are all committed to recognizing the seminal contributions of Langston Hughes to the American, Afro-American, and world literary traditions. Their work in this volume helps to keep the name and work of Langston Hughes alive and before the critics, students, and readers who will establish the literary canons of the future. To James de Jongh, Dolan Hubbard, Joyce A. Joyce, R. Baxter Miller, and James Smethurst I offer my sincerest thanks for their participation in this project.
No one who discusses the work of Langston Hughes can afford to do so without recourse to the important and inspiring work of Arnold Rampersad, whose scholarship laid and continues to lay the groundwork for what we as Hughes scholars produce. When I write of Hughes, it is generally with some work of Professor Rampersad's by my side for background, verification, consultation, and insight. It is also important to acknowledge the important work of the critics Donald Dickinson, James Emanuel, Onwuchekwa Jemie, Therman B. O'Daniel, and Jean Wagner, as well as the contributions of Patricia Willis, at the Beinecke Library, and Emery Wimbish, at Lincoln University.
Personally, my introduction to the serious study of Langston Hughes came at the instruction of Angelene Jamison-Hall,