© 2015 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.



by Langston Hughes

Democracy Courage Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Line)

Quote #1

Democracy will not come
Today, this year
Nor ever
Through compromise and fear. (1-4)

That first stanza says it all. It takes courage to resist compromising and fearing those who seek to oppress. True democracy goes hand in hand with that Wizard of Oz Cowardly Lion who's in need of some real guts.

Quote #2

I do not need my freedom when I'm dead.
I cannot live on tomorrow's bread. (13-14)

Procrastinators and cowards talk about freedom tomorrow, but courageous folks like our speaker talk about freedom today. After all, tomorrow is no good to you if you're dead, right?

Quote #3

Is a strong seed
In a great need. (15-18)

Courage has the potential to make freedom's "strong seed" grow even higher, especially since it's planted in a "great need." Pairing courage with need does wonders for folks when it comes to freedom and democracy.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...