Repetition, prolonged metaphor, personification, simile, imagery, caesura, and reference are among the poetic tropes used in Leopold Senghor's poem "Black Woman." The poet utilizes the body of a black lady as an extended metaphor to portray Africa. He describes her as a woman of infinite beauty and majesty who defies physical laws by remaining young forever.
He starts off by saying that Africa is a woman and goes on to describe her attributes. He uses repetition to emphasize the fact that Africa is beautiful and majestic.
The poet also uses prolonged metaphor to depict Africa as old but still youthful. He begins the poem by saying that Africa has seen many wars but remains young and beautiful. This idea is further developed through imagery where Africa is described as if it were a goddess.
Personification involves treating objects or animals as if they were human. In this case, Africa is treated as a woman who has emotions and can think for herself.
Similes are comparisons using "like" or "as". In this case, the poet says that Africa is wise like an ancient goddess who has no equal.
Metaphors are general terms used to describe something not literally but with reference to it. For example, the poet could be saying that Africa is beautiful by comparing it to gold.
Senghor's poem "Black Woman" is characteristic of the negritude literary trend in that it extols Africa's beauty. The personification of Africa is also shown to be proud, reflecting the Negritude literature's emphasis on being proud to be African.
Negritude was an art movement and a philosophy that arose among black artists and intellectuals in France during the early 20th century. They advocated for an identity separate from both Europe and America. In their view, blacks were a unique people with their own culture, history, and goals.
The term "negro" was used by French writers and artists to identify themselves as members of the black community. It was not meant to be derogatory; rather, it reflected their belief that blacks and whites shared a common humanity. Negritude poets such as Senghor wrote about their experiences as blacks in a racist society with feelings of alienation and superiority.
In his poem, "Black woman", Senghor celebrates Africa's beauty while at the same time criticizing European colonialism. He uses poetic language to express his feelings about being black in a white world. For example, he says that even though black men have killed men of other colors, they love black women because of their beauty.
The beauty of blackness in your figure! Senghor lifts physical beauty to spiritual heights throughout the poem and analyzes the beauty of the titular black woman from a variety of (equally joyous) perspectives. He celebrates her hair, skin, and eyes before turning his attention to more spiritual matters such as her heart and soul. Senghor also expresses admiration for black women's strength as well as their ability to endure pain with little complaint.
Here are some of the major themes in Black Woman:
1. Physical Beauty - The beauty of blackness is analyzed from both a psychological and a physiological perspective. It is concluded that physical beauty is important but that it can never be the sole basis for judgment.
2. Strength - Black women are praised for their strength throughout the poem. It is noted that even though they suffer abuse at the hands of men, they still manage to keep their spirits high.
3. Ability to Endure Pain - The ability of black women to endure pain is also mentioned in the poem. It is said that despite the agony that they go through on a daily basis, they remain calm and collected because they have faith that their husbands will return.