An analysis of the writers of the harlem renaissance

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An analysis of the writers of the harlem renaissance

Get Full Essay Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues. The Harlem Renaissance marked the first time that mainstream publishers and critics took African American literature seriously and that African American literature and arts attracted significant attention from the nation at large.

Although it was primarily a literary movement, it was closely related to developments in African American music, theater, art, and politics. Several factors laid the groundwork for the movement.

A small black middle class had developed by the turn of the century, fostered by increased education and employment opportunities following the American Civil War During a phenomenon known as the Great Migration, hundreds of thousands of black Americans moved from an economically depressed rural South to industrial cities of the North to take advantage of the employment opportunities created by World War I.

Equally important, during the s a new political agenda advocating racial equality arose in the African American community, particularly in its growing middle class. Championing the agenda were black historian and sociologist W. This agenda was also reflected in the efforts of Jamaican-born black nationalist Marcus Garvey, whose Back to Africa movement inspired racial pride among working-class blacks in the United States in the s.

African American literature and arts had begun a steady development just before the turn of the century. Rosamond Johnson, brother of writer An analysis of the writers of the harlem renaissance Weldon Johnson.

Jazz and blues music moved with black populations from the South and Midwest into the bars and cabarets of Harlem.

An analysis of the writers of the harlem renaissance

Chesnutt in the late s were among the earliest works of African Americans to receive national recognition. By the end of World War I the fiction of James Weldon Johnson and the poetry of Claude McKay anticipated the literature that would follow in the s by describing the reality of black life in America and the struggle for racial identity.

In the early s three works signaled the new creative energy in African American literature. Caneby Jean Toomer, was an experimental novel that combined poetry and prose in documenting the life of American blacks in the rural South and urban North.

With these early works as the foundation, three events between and launched the Harlem Renaissance. First, on March 21,Charles S. The National Urban League was founded in to help black Americans address the economic and social problems they encountered as they resettled in the urban North. As a result of this dinner, the Survey Graphic, a magazine of social analysis and criticism that was interested in cultural pluralism, produced a Harlem issue in March Devoted to defining the aesthetic of black literature and art, the Harlem issue featured work by black writers and was edited by black philosopher and literary scholar Alain Leroy Locke.

Later that year Locke expanded the special issue into a book, The New Negro, which became the landmark anthology of the age. Finally, in the autumn of a group of young black writers produced their own literary magazine, Fire!! What united participants was their sense of taking part in a common endeavor and their commitment to giving artistic expression to the African American experience.

Some common themes existed, such as an interest in the roots of the 20th-century African American experience in Africa and the American South, and a strong sense of racial pride and desire for social and political equality.

But the most characteristic aspect of the Harlem Renaissance was the diversity of its expression. From the mids through the mids, some 16 black writers published more than 50 volumes of poetry and fiction, while dozens of other African American artists made their mark in painting, music, and theater.

McKay also presented glimpses of the glamour and the grit of Harlem life in Harlem Shadows. Countee Cullen used both African and European images to explore the African roots of black American life.

Diversity and experimentation also flourished in the performing arts and were reflected in the blues singing of Bessie Smith and in jazz music. Jazz ranged from the marriage of blues and ragtime by pianist Jelly Roll Morton to the instrumentation of bandleader Louis Armstrong and the orchestration of composer Duke Ellington.

The Harlem Renaissance appealed to a mixed audience. The literature appealed to the African American middle class and to the white book-buying public. Such magazines as The Crisis, a monthly journal of the NAACP, and Opportunity, an official publication of the Urban League, employed Harlem Renaissance writers on their editorial staffs; published poetry and short stories by black writers; and promoted African American literature through articles, reviews, and annual literary prizes.

As important as these literary outlets were, however, the Renaissance relied heavily on white publishing houses and white-owned magazines. In fact, a major accomplishment of the Renaissance was to push open the door to mainstream white periodicals and publishing houses, although the relationship between the Renaissance writers and white publishers and audiences created some controversy.

African American musicians and other performers also played to mixed audiences. Ultimately, the more successful black musicians and entertainers who appealed to a mainstream audience moved their performances downtown. The Great Depression of the s increased the economic pressure on all sectors of life.

Organizations such as the NAACP and the Urban League, which had actively promoted the Renaissance in the s, shifted their interests to economic and social issues in the s. In spite of these problems the Renaissance did not disappear overnight.

Almost one-third of the books published during the Renaissance appeared after In the last analysis, the Harlem Renaissance ended when most of those associated with it left Harlem or stopped writing. Among the new young artists who appeared in the s and s, social realism replaced modernism and primitivism as the dominant mode of expression.

The writers that followed in the s and s found that publishers and the public were more open to African American literature than they had been at the beginning of the century.Dear Twitpic Community - thank you for all the wonderful photos you have taken over the years.

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T LIT Understanding Literature (5) VLPA Develops essential tools for close and informed reading of fiction, drama, and poetry. Considers how a text generates aesthetic pleasure, how it achieves moral or social impact. Develops skills in literary analysis through reading literary texts, through.

Review literary movements, poetry analysis, speech organization and more with this Praxis English Language Arts: Content and Analysis () study. Hughes published "Harlem" in , near the end of the Harlem Renaissance.

America was still reeling from the horrors of World War II, and African American writers like Hughes were speaking out. Harlem Renaissance Summary The Harlem Renaissance was the name given to the cultural, social, and artistic explosion that took place in Harlem between the end of World War I and the middle of the s. The Harlem Renaissance - Home