Motown Records was founded in 1959 by Berry Gordy who turned his music production company into history’s most successful black-owned record label company.
Over the years, African American Music has developed as not only as cultural but also artistic phenomenon affecting the world. The music takes its own stand of being dominant as well of having a prevailing means of expression through the use of the lyrics. The lyrics of many songs tend to use a specific type of language in order to create that connection between the listeners. This certain style of language helps the listeners to think on a deeper level about the real meaning behind the lyrics.
In today’s modern world, many people would be surprised to find out that there is still a racial caste system in America. After witnessing the election of a black president, people have started believing that America has entered a post-racial society. This is both a patently false and dangerous mindset. The segregation and stigma of race is still very much alive in our society. Instead of a formalized institution such as slavery or Jim Crow, America has found a new way to continue the marginalization of blacks by using the criminal justice system. In Michelle Alexander’s book “ The New Jim Crow”, she shows how America’s “ War on Drugs “ has become a tool of racial segregation and how the discretionary enforcement of drug laws has
The Jim Crow laws were local and state laws that were supposedly “separate but equal,” but instead blacks were inferior to the whites due that to the social, educational, and economical disadvantages that they caused. In Woodward’s greatly influential book, The Strange Career of Jim Crow, he shows supporters of segregation that this was not the way that it had always been, but instead segregation took time to develop after the Civil war and that the acceptance of the Jim Crow laws was not just because of race, but also included politic aspects. Woodward proves his thesis by showing how the state between the two races was right after the race the war and how slavery required interaction between blacks and whites. Woodward continues to
The Black Arts movement refers to a period of “furious flowering” of African American creativity beginning in the mid-1960’s and continuing through much of the 1970’s (Perceptions of Black). Linked both chronologically and ideologically with the Black Power Movement, The BAM recognized the idea of two cultural Americas: one black and one white. The BAM pressed for the creation of a distinctive Black Aesthetic in which black artists created for black audiences. The movement saw artistic production as the key to revising Black American’s perceptions of themselves, thus the Black Aesthetic was believed to be an integral component of the economic, political, and cultural empowerment of the Black
Jim Crow was a man who created laws, that affected many peoples lives during the 1960s. These laws made it much harder for blacks mainly in the South, but then it started to move upward in the United States. There were many purposes leading to creating these laws. During this era, blacks were excluded from many things and opportunities. These laws made many changes and changed how the things were after these laws were taken away. The Jim Crow Laws affected, harmed, excluded, and ruined many blacks and in some cases white peoples lives.
The crime of rape allegedly committed by nine black teenagers in the early spring of 1931 tested the American legal system for both justice and racism. All nine—later known as the Scottsboro Boys—were falsely accused of raping two white women—Ruby Bates and Victoria Price. The nine young teenagers—Andy Wright, Willie Roberson, Charles Weems, Ozie Powell, Olen Montgomery, Eugene Williams, Haywood Patterson, Clarence Norris and Leroy Wright—were given guilty verdicts and tried for their lives. All of the men endured long stays in prison until that case made its way through the legal system (Salter; Linder).
The definition of the term “American character”, in general, was in fact plagued during the 1950s. Instead of the believable “picture perfect” definition that American character was portrayed to be, it was really constructed of major struggles between different races. In particular, the significant struggles between blacks and whites. The 1950s was a crucial decade of change for African Americans. The results of the battle for nine African American children to attend Central High School (Little Rock, Arkansas) in 1957 promoted social advance for the permanent desegregation of public school systems. However, even with this nationally recognized social advance, the concept of “American character” varied between blacks and whites due to
In chapter seven, “Spirited Away”: Race, Gender, and Murder in Oklahoma During the 1920s, it was about how a small but active group of African Americans appeared and fought for their rights when the twentieth century came around (pg. 135). According the author, when it came to the Jim Crow Laws in Oklahoma, it separated almost every aspect of life into white and colored. A number of them were quickly written into the states’ legal code and were founded on two basic principles. They were that African Americans were individuals that were not capable of success or failure, good or evil, but they were deviant and inferior. They were criminal and ignorant people that intended to harm the white race, and because of that segregation was needed. The second principle, behind the Jim Crow Law, was that because of their moral and cultural superiority, whites had the right to separate themselves from African Americans and to limit their upward mobility. With these laws based on the assumption of African American inferiority creating segregation, crime and race became tangled and intertwined, and many saw vigilantism as a necessary check on black criminality (pg. 136). This, according to the author, asserted white superiority and that African Americans should say under them as an inferior race. As for the lynchings, along with race riots, they became very effective in terms of maintaining political, economic and social subordination of African Americans throughout the country (pg. 136).
cases did not occur until the 1950's and 1960's, the foundation was laid in the
Nina Simone used music to challenge, provoke, incite, and inform the masses during the period that we know as the Civil Rights Era. In the songs” Four Women”, “Young Gifted and Black”, and Mississippi God Damn”, Nina Simone musically maps a personal "intersectionality" as it relates to being a black American female artist. Kimberly Crenshaw defines "intersectionality" as an inability for black women to separate race, class and gender. Nina Simone’s music directly addresses this paradigm. While she is celebrated as a prolific artist her political and social activism is understated despite her front- line presence in the movement. According to Ruth Feldstein “Nina Simone recast black activism in the 1960’s.” Feldstein goes on to say
For centuries, Gospel music has influenced and promoted African-American social, moral and ethical values, playing an imperative role in modelling their past and future. Originating from the hardships of slavery and the strength of Christian worship, Gospel music has adapted to musical tastes through the development of a number of sub-genres, while retaining its moral and spiritual framework. Throughout its musical history, Gospel music has had a profound and predominant influence on its devotees and followers. During the turbulent years of the American Civil Rights Movement, Gospel music played a vital role in building the foundations of stability and
Eddie James “Son” House, Jr., an American blues singer and guitarist once stated, "People keep asking me where the blues started and all I can say is that when I was a boy we always was singing in the fields. Not real singing, you know, just hollerin', but we made up our songs about things that was happening to us at the time, and I think that's where the blues started (Cohn, 1993).”
Jazz, used by artists as a means of expressing their emotions and feelings, has had a lasting impact on the United States. Many look at Jazz as a simple art form, however, few know its roots as means of bringing blacks into mainstream American music. Also, few know that Jazz brought together multiple American music forms together into a single global phenomenon. Marching bands, church music, religious hymns, and underground civil right music were all integrated into this genre and presented to the world as the true American music form. Jazz also become a symbol of resistance and a way of expressing against racism. Jazz artists like Billie Holiday and Louis Armstrong were only a few African