Jazz: Urban and Rural Reactions In the 1920s

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Subject Area: Music and American CultureTopic: Jazz: Urban and Rural Reactions in the 1920sIn parallel with the uproar of jazz during the 1920s came the commotion of different critics from various geographical settings. Many of the white people living in rural areas disliked and rejected jazz as a musical genre. However, the urban city-dwellers were more fond of it; therefore, it was more generally accepted and frequently found in city nightclubs and radio stations. Several characteristics of cities also allowed jazz to survive in urban areas over the rural ones, such as: diversity, tolerance, a more progressive attitude, technology (media, radio), more entertainment locations, and a more educated populace. Cities were known for the more…show more content…
This also affected the conservative populace of the suburbs who were afraid their young girls were mesmerized by the "black music." Jazz was so closely tied with to African American culture that it was often referred to as being "the accompaniment of the voodoo dancer" (Roaring 2). By referring to jazz in this manner, critics were trying to degrade and undermine everything that it meant to the black community. They were also trying to lure white Americans into their train of thought and trying to get them agree with their mind mapping accusations. "Many […] Americans were appalled to see their children dancing to music that was believed to have emerged from […] [the] Negro brothels of the south"(Roaring 2). In addition, a plethora of jazz critics became famous for voicing their dislike of jazz. But in fact, they hid behind their critiques of jazz in order to express, not the dislike of the music, "but the social and political dislike of the black population" (Anderson 135). The problem that worried white conservatives the most was interbreeding between black and white young people who were really into jazz mainly because it belonged to the new counter-culture. Jazz served as the highway that joined blacks and whites. Whites were not only racists towards blacks emotionally, but their prejudice expanded to influencing their physical behavior as well.

Many times did the racist, anti-jazz white population try to sully jazz to
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