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The Black Heralds

The Black Heralds

by César Vallejo

Violence Theme

Put on your crash helmet, humanity. This could hurt. In "The Black Heralds," violence is used to signify all kinds of human suffering. In fact, even life itself, or the universe, is violent toward humanity as it delivers its powerful "blows." And the worst part—the universe is out to get us!

Questions About Violence

  1. What kind of violence does the poem describe? Why do you think the poet chose this kind of violence?
  2. Does the poem offer any hope for escape or release from the violence of life?
  3. Do you think that the violence in the poem is something that human beings are enacting on each other, or is it just the bad luck that happens to everyone to some degree or other?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

The universe is conspiring against you, and it's coming after you according to this poem. Watch out!

The poem urges people to fight back against violent repression. Rise up!

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