I. The Harlem Renaissance A. The major movement of African Americans from the south to the north during WWI and beyond was called the Great Migration
1910 African American Population 1930 African American Population
I. The Harlem Renaissance… • Harlem Renaissance was an African American literary & artistic movement that enabled them to express thoughts on their life, culture & feelings • Writers included Claude McKay, Langston Hughes, and Zora Neale Hurston
I. The Harlem Renaissance… Claude McKay was the first important writer from the Harlem Renaissance. His poetry expressed a proud defiance & bitter contempt of racism. Zora Neale Hurston wrote stories that contained African American women as the central characters. According to Langston Hughes, the purpose of his poetry was “to explain and illuminate the Negro condition in America... without fear or shame.” He captured the spirit of the movement in a single sentence: “I am Negro - and beautiful.”
Democracy by Langston Hughes Democracy will not come Today, this year Nor ever Through compromise and fear. I have as much right As the other fellow has To stand On my two feet And own the land. I tire so of hearing people say, Let things take their course. Tomorrow is another day. I do not need my freedom when I'm dead. I cannot live on tomorrow's bread. Freedom Is a strong seed Planted In a great need. I live here, too. I want freedom Just as you. I, too sing America By Langston Hughes I, too, sing America. I am the darker brother. They send me to eat in the kitchen When company comes, But I laugh, And eat well, And grow strong. Tomorrow, I'll be at the table When company comes. Nobody'll dare Say to me, "Eat in the kitchen,“ Then. Besides, They'll see how beautiful I am And be ashamed-- I, too, am America.
I. The Harlem Renaissance… • Louis Armstrong was a talented jazz musician • Bessie Smith sang the blues • African American entertainers got their start at the Cotton Club Bessie Smith was one of the most successful recording artists of her time. Louis Armstrong was known for his scat singing and improvisation.
I. The Harlem Renaissance… G. It helped white Americans understand African American culture & set the stage for the Civil Rights Movement