Redeait G. Meaza
Will my black and African American people ever have a happy ending? Will we be afraid to sing, write poetry about our trials and tribulations or will we rise and stand for freedom because we no longer want to be consider as a strange fruit, but as one beautiful ripe fruit. To have confident is one thing, but to have courage is another thing and not everyone carriers this trait, but the ones that do make an impact. Now let’s talk about having power and strength through a song.
Why it was created?
“Strange Fruit” wasn’t always a song it was originally a poem called “Bitter Fruit.” “Strange Fruit was composed, originally, by Abel Meeropol, a Brooklyn High School English …show more content…
The African American tenets that were displayed in the song is rhetoric of community and resistance because Allan was stating what was going on in communities during the 1930’s without shying away about how blacks were being mistreated not like human beings. Lynching only happened in black community.
The only way black people were able to express their pain was through music. Allan felt like for this song to make a more powerful impact he asked Billie Holiday if she could sing it because she has such a strong voice that can really project the message behind the song. By labeling black women's musical discourse as one of voicelessness, I specifically draw on black feminist theories addressing the "politics of silence" (Higginbotham 1992, 266), which discouraged black women's public disclosure of their sexuality, and the "culture of dissemblance" (Hine 1995, 380), which created the illusion of sexual openness while in actuality it "shielded the truth of [black women's] inner lives and selves from their oppressors" (Hine 1995, 380). The purpose of the song is a cry for action. Although Holiday didn’t experience seeing the lynching she was able to grasp the concept of the song. Holiday says, "When [Allen] showed me that poem, I dug it right off. It seemed to spell out all the things that had killed Pop [who died of pneumonia in a segregated hospital ward]" (Holiday  1984,
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The version of the song “Strange Fruit,” by Cassandra Wilson is a piece of music that consists of 4 verses. I have broken these down into Verse A, Verse B. Verse A, and Verse A’. Cassandra’s voice is most certainly the melody of this version of Strange Fruit and is used in all 4 verses. The rhythm of this piece is a 4. The song opens in a high pitch “tinkling” piano, soft flute (that reminds me of the wind bowing) a soft distant sound of an electric guitar and the eerie background bass that has the feeling of darkness and fear. This drew an image of dark and chilling to me.
This poem focuses on the lynching of a African American male. The speaker of the poem appears to console a woman who appears to be distressed due to the events taking place. In the first four lines of stanza 1, the speaker says:
Music is a creative art form that allows the artist to construct something that expresses a purpose. It evolves over time and changes as the world changes, taking on many different motivations behind the melody and lyrics. In today’s society, anger, oppression, racism, and negative opinions rule the media and popular culture. I believe that African Americans need to show their self worth and not let white people hold them back. With the music in white culture often mocking African American culture and portraying negative stereotypes, African Americans have to find ways to gain respect. In acknowledgement of the negative portrayal of their culture, African Americans respond by creating songs and videos that express their pride in their culture and heritage, react to white oppression, and communicate their independence.
The song “The Death of Emmett Till” by Bob Dylan explains to the audience about a 14-year-old name Emmett Till gets murder by two white men after flirting with a white girl. The lyrics in “The Death of Emmett Till stated, “This song is just a reminder to remind your fellow man. That this kind of thing still lives today in that ghost-robed Ku Klux Klan, but if all of us folks that think alike. If we gave all we could give, we could make this great land of ours a greater place to live.”. The message of this song explains white supremacy still exist today because the white jury stated in the past that the two white men are innocent when the two brothers confess that they killed a black person. This show in the past of American history that the white jury was not fair to the citizen of color or futile against whites. The true meaning behind this song is to explain to the audience that we need to change the ways we make unfair rights against color in order to make America great again. The social justice in this context of the song “The Death of Emmett Till” refer to America needs to
A perfect example of in the piece of how African-Americans are vilified comes at the end of the fourth stanza with the lines "grow a natural and practice vandalism/these are useful games (some say a skill even learned)." These two lines show how the black male, especially the young black male is viewed as nothing more than a thief skilled in the art of crime. Further evidence to the fact is found in the line "I'm told it has full instructions of how to siphon gas and fill a bottle," which is again alludes to H. Rap Brown, his cry of Burn Baby Burn' and the use of pipe bombs and the like to demand equality.
Power and control plays a big role in the lives many. When power is used as a form of control, it leads to depression and misery in the relationship. This is proven through the themes and symbolism used in the stories Lesson before Dying, The fun they had, The strangers that came to town, and Dolls house through the median of three major unsuccessful relationship: racial tension between the African Americans and the caucasians in the novel Lesson before Dying, Doll’s House demonstrates a controlling relationship can be detrimental for both individuals and The Stranger That Came To Town along with The Fun They Had show that when an individual is suppressed by majority they become despondent.
In past years, as well as, in the twenty-first century, African Americans are being oppressed and judged based on the color of their skin. In, A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines, this is the primary conflict that plagues Jefferson’s as well as Grant’s everyday life. By pleading guilty to a murder that he did not commit, Jefferson has to choose to die just as he is, a hog in the white’s eyes, or die a man. On the other hand, Grant, who is his teacher, is faced with being looked down upon by his community all because of his race and status. He is graced with the challenge of turning Jefferson into a man before his execution date. It is only a matter of time before they both realize that they cannot change the past and they have
Many people believe that material things will bring you peace and happiness. That is not always that case though.Everyone at some point in their life had gone through something that they thought would have a major positive impact on their life, but ultimately, it affected them very negatively. These can include anything from money, to power, even to women. Bernard Malamud explains these example in his book, The Natural, with his character, Roy Hobbs. Roy is the Knights star baseball player, when all goes wrong. He starts to chase different women, believing that those people will lead him to happiness in the end. Roy Hobbs is the main character in the book, The Natural, who finds himself in tough situations, and finally discovers that what he wanted from the start, won’t actually make him happy in the end.
In the novel, A Lesson Before Dying by _________, the main character, Grant, is trying to console Jefferson. Jefferson has just been framed for a murder he did not commit, and many believe it is because he is black. Two drunk, white men went into a liquor store, already drunk, and attempted to shoot the owner who, in turn, shot back. In the end of the firefight, Jefferson was the only man standing. When at the trial to convince the jury Jefferson did not actually shoot the people, his attorney realizes his attempts at proving Jefferson’s innocence were futile, and says, “What justice would there be to take this life? Justice, gentlemen? Why, I would just as soon put a hog in the electric chair as this” (8). He is asking the jury to spare the life of Jefferson, by implying that Jefferson is no more intelligent than a hog. The attorney is white, and is voicing the common belief among whites that all blacks are animals. Throughout the novel, Jefferson becomes haunted by the
Singing as a form of communication and as an expression of emotions was deeply rooted in African American culture. Slaves who were shipped across the Atlantic in the 1700’s used song to communicate during the several-month-long journeys. Slave songs were used to pass down history through generations and ensured the survival of African American culture. Black slaves worked and lived in horrendous conditions and were constantly oppressed by blacks. Slaves had no rights or freedoms and living their culture in the form of song in a foreign land oppressed by foreigners was key to the survival of their culture and legacy for future generations. Claude McKay lived during the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920’s, which was decades after the civil war and after slavery was abolished in America. After the reconstruction, the Jim Crow laws were laws that enforced racial segregation and blacks second-class status. During the post reconstruction, thousands of blacks were lynched primarily in the South and were oppressed by whites. In Claude McKay’s “Outcast,” the difficulty of being black is unceasing oppression by whites as seen through their inability to connect with their past roots, their treatment by White’s as sub-human, and their belief that they have lost their humanity.
Songs like “Ain’t no mountain high enough”, “My Girl”, and “ABC” have shaped American history in ways that people don’t even realize. We wouldn’t be listing to artist like Beyoncé, Drake, and John Legend if these former artists didn’t write and/or perform these songs. They have allowed African American music to blossom to what it is known for today. If these artists did not continue to write and produce music, they would have never gotten anywhere and we wouldn’t have the African American artist we love today. This paper will now go into more specific African American singer, songwriters, and composers.
In this poem, he touches on many themes. One of the main ones being mortality. Essentially, he is asking African-Americans are they willing to die for their rights. In order to encourage them, he declares that their deaths would be noble. There is a theme of warfare, as the race riots were basically a war between blacks versus whites. This contributes to the “us versus them” mentality, which then adds to the disdain amongst the two races. Honor is probably the most important theme, as it runs throughout the other major themes of the poem and is essentially the point of the poem. Even though you have already accepted your faith of dying, die with honor and meaning.
Chinua Achebe was a Nigerian novelist, poet, professor and critic. He is mainly known for his trilogy that investigates, using fiction, the history of Nigeria. The trilogy begins with Things Fall Apart, followed by No Longer at Ease and ended with Arrow of God. Furthermore, in this critically analytical essay, through a feminist perspective, a chapter of his second novel, No Longer at Ease, published in 1960, will be discussed. The setting of the novel is Lagos, Nigeria and Umuofia, Nigeria during the 1950s, before Nigeria attained independence from Great Britain. The novel, No Longer at Ease begins with Obi Okonkwo on trial, charged for accepting a bribe. However, using flashback, the author takes us back to the point before Obi’s departure
“Where Have All The Flowers Gone?” by Pete Seeger became a popular anti-war protest song during the 1960s. This song did not only protest against the Vietnam War but also made their generation more aware about the global problems. Songs like “Not Ready to Make Nice” by Dixie chicks about freedom of speech was written after they received death threats for singing against the Iraq war, protests against the violation of human rights. But music is not only used to protest, it is also used to give hope and optimism. “We Shall Overcome”, a song sung by Guy Carawan together with the Montgomery Gospel Trio and the Nashville Quartet, is perhaps the best known example of civil rights song. Instead of blaming the government, this song registered a feeling of hope and faith among African-Americans during the civil rights movement.
The poem’s words echo through your mind, revealing a haunting display. Eleanora Fagan, professionally known as Billie Holiday, performed Strange fruit. She sang the poem not in a melody, but in a screeching tone creating an alarming show. The timbre of her voice’s pitch was intense. In other words, the way Billie Holiday sang Strange Fruit in a serious voice, confirms that the poem is not to joke about because it is based on a true story. It is important to realize, that the poem relates to history because it demonstrates how demented racism dominated in the