It was in 1920’s when the Harlem Renaissance began. This was all about the African American Cultural Revolution that kicked off in Harlem, New York. This African American began after the World War I, and got hot and heavy around the late mid 1920s, which ended around the mid 1930s. Harlem Renaissance was a movement that consisted of art, music, literary, dance, and theater. During this time of Harlem Renaissance, they displayed black culture with the utmost pride and with a lot of dedication and interest in it. The African Americans believed that they could use their artistic talents to bring the races together. The Civil Rights movement was going on at the same time as the Harlem Renaissance.
In the beginning the Harlem Renaissance was known to be the New Negro Movement or some called it the New Negro Renaissance which consisted of many common denominators that included the Great Migration. It was after World War I, when thousands of Africans Americans decided to seek better jobs in order to provide for their families by leaving the heavy populated rural areas in the South. They went to the North where a lot of industries and the people were more respectable towards the blacks that would give jobs. There was a large number of African American that moved to Harlem, New York to live in 1918.
The Harlem Renaissance brought a lot of social in sight when it comes to being aware of the African American culture. It was in 1909 when the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) came about that interacted with the blacks and whites. The NAACP was the link between the interracial populations. There was a man by the name of W.E.B. DuBois who was a black culture sociologist who assisted in starting the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and he was the
editor of a magazine called, “The Crisis”.
There was a Jamaican man who was born black who was icon during the Harlem Renaissance period. His name was Marcus Garvey. He put forth a lot of interest in the African roots. He learned all about it that inspired the “Back to Africa” movement. It was in 1914 when Marcus Garvey discovered the United Negro Improvement Association (UNIA). He got his inspiration from Booker T. Washington who also did great things as well as contributing contributions to society during that era.
It was in 1911 during the Harlem Renaissance, when a black and white organization formed the National Urban League. This organization played a big part in helping all African Americans move to a better place in providing for their families with the help of social services. This made it easier for the African Americans mix with society. Charles S. Johnson was the “godfather” who was a black sociologist, editor, and publisher of the League’s magazine called “Opportunity”. This magazine had plenty of articles and reviews all about African Americans during the Harlem Renaissance period. He found people to sponsor the youth in during his yearly magazine contest. These contest would inspired the young African American generation to become writers. It was 1924 when the black writers were introduced to the white publishers.
There were several books published in result of African Americans writers and editors. There was a man name Alain Lock who was a black philosopher that published the book called “The New Negro”. After Alain Lock published his book, the white people started taking him very serious when it comes to African American literature. It was much later when Carl Van Vechten who was a white man who played a part in the Harlem Renaissance wrote a controversial novel called “Nigger Heaven” in 1926. This book turned out to be a best seller during this period. This book got the white people going when it comes to the African Americans.
There was a black poet by the name of Langston Hughes who mentioned the feelings and conditions of the common black man. He expressed all the trial and tribulations that the African American endures in life. Langston Hughes poetry came from the rhythm of blues and jazz. He was the first to create jazz poetry. There was this female that came to be the “Queen of the Renaissance,” who spoke black fiction.
Bowles, M. (2011). A history of the United States since 1865. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint
Dibblin, J (Director) & Gray, L (Producer). (2011). Harlem v oices: The poetry of Langston Hughes and Claude McKay [Documentary] United States: The Open University. Retrieved from the Films On Demand database
US Department of Agriculture (Producer). (1965) Poverty in rural America (Part I) Video]. United States: Prelinger Archives. Retrieved from the Films On Demand database. (This archival video produced by the US Department of Agriculture examines the incidence of rural poverty in the United States during the 1960s, with particular focus on the Appalachia region.)
US Department of Agriculture. (Producer). (1965) Poverty in rural America (Part II) [Video]. United States: Prelinger Archives. Retrieved from the Films On Demand database. (This archival video produced by the US Department of Agriculture examines the incidence of rural poverty in the United States during the 1960s, with particular focus on the Appalachia region.)