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African American Culture

African American Culture

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African American Culture

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  1. African American Culture Section 3

  2. The Harlem Renaissance • Great Migration- moving from the rural South to industrial cities in the North • African Americans sought to escape the segregated society of the South • Hoped to find economic opportunities • Build better lives • Black populations rose in large northern cities after WWI • Nightclubs swelled as well with live, loud music

  3. Cont. • New York City neighborhood of Harlem in particular • It was the heart and soul of the African American renaissance • African Americans created artistic development, racial pride, community, and a political organization • Became known as the Harlem Renaissance

  4. The Writers • Claude McKay is considered one of the first important writers of the Harlem Renaissance • He wrote poems about lynching and death • Expressed a proud defiance and bitter contempt of racism- 2 strong characteristics of the Harlem Renaissance • Langston Hughes was one of the most prolific and original writes of the time • Became the leading voice of the African American experience in the U.S.

  5. Claude McKay

  6. The Lynching • His Spirit in smoke ascended to high heaven. His father, by the cruelest way of pain, Had bidden him to his bosom once again; The awful sin remained still unforgiven. All night a bright and solitary star (Perchance the one that ever guided him, Yet gave him up at last to Fate's wild whim) Hung pitifully o'er the swinging char. Day dawned, and soon the mixed crowds came to view The ghastly body swaying in the sun The women thronged to look, but never a one Showed sorrow in her eyes of steely blue; And little lads, lynchers that were to be, Danced round the dreadful thing in fiendish glee. •

  7. Jazz, Blues, and Theater • Jazz- a style of music influenced by Dixieland music and ragtime • Louis Armstrong introduced jazz upon arriving in Chicago from New Orleans • He became the first great cornet and trumpet soloist in jazz music • Ragtime was also a big hit • Duke Ellington was a composer, pianist, and a band leader who played in New York speakeasies and clubs • Cotton Club- one of the most famous Harlem nightspots

  8. Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington

  9. Cont. • Bessie Smith symbolized soul • Blues- soulful style of music that evolved from African American spirituals • Theater was also on the rise • Shuffle Along was the first musical written and performed by African Americans on Broadway in 1921

  10. African American Politics • Harlem Renaissance helped to spark political and economic aspirations of African Americans as well • WWI was credited for a change in attitude for many African Americans • W.E.B. Du Bois said it best… • “We return. We return from fighting. We return fighting. Make way for democracy! We saved it in France, and by the Great Jehovah, we will save it in the United States of America, or know the reason why.”

  11. The Black Vote in the North • Great Migration had a significant impact on the political power of African Americans in the North • As numbers grew in neighborhoods, they became powerful voting blocs that could sway the outcome of elections • Most African Americans voted Republican, party of Abraham Lincoln • 1928 voters in Chicago voted in Oscar DePriest, became the first African American representative in Congress from a Northern state

  12. DePriest

  13. DePriest Achievements • 3 terms in Congress • Introduced new laws to provide pensions to formerly enslaved African Americans over 75 years old • New law to declare Lincoln’s birthday a public holiday • New law to fine and imprison officials who allowed lynching of prisoners

  14. The NAACP Battles Lynching • Read this section

  15. Black Nationalism and Marcus Garvey • Read this section • Know Marcus Garvey • Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA)