Racial Tension In Strange Fruit

Decent Essays
According to the NAACP article in the late 19th century racial tension grew throughout the United States. More of this tension was noticeable in the Southern parts of the United States. Lynchings were becoming a popular way of resolving some of the anger that whites had in relation to the free blacks. From 1882-1968, 4,743 lynching’s occurred in the United States. Of these people that were lynched 3,446 were black (“History of Lynchings,” 2017).Many poets and writers took those tragedy’s and decided to put their feelings into writing. “Bitter Fruit” later turned into “ Strange Fruit,” was written by a Jewish high school English teacher from the Bronx and a member of the American Communist Party. This astonishing writers name is Abel Meeropol. In 1937, Meeropol saw a photograph of Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith being lynched in the South. The two gentleman was accused of rape towards a white lady and was sent to jail falsely for it. A number of people broke into the jail with sledgehammers to get the two men to beat and lynch them. Meeropol decided to write a poem about the disbelief that came across his eyes. Meeropol wrote the poem as a protest poem. Meeropol recalled how the photograph “ haunted me for days” and inspired the writing of the poem (“Strange Fruit,” 2017). He wanted to expose the American racism basing it on the lynching of African Americans. Meeropols work was so stunning it brought major attention to the New York lawmakers. The New York lawmakers did not
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