The Harlem Renaissance And American History

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Art is defined as an expression of a persons beliefs, ideas, imagination, and character. In this class, we learned that the many forms of art could be a reflection of a persons emotions or a time period by using naturalism, idealism, or abstract themes. During the 1920’s, an era known as the Harlem Renaissance defined black culture and changed entertainment around the world. The black community used art such as music, literature, and paintings to express social freedom. Artist such as Jacob Lawrence, Langston Hughes, and Duke Ellington used their art as a form of therapy and communication to share the life of an African American in White America. This phenomenon created culture pride within the community. Their art is significant to…show more content…
However in the summer of 1919, the white community became fearful and uncomfortable with the Great Migration and retaliated with violence. The KKK engaged in several riots and lynching’s that resulted in 83 deaths of African Americans ( Mann HRC). Yet, from those terrible tragedies came great civil rights leaders such as W.E.B. Du Bois and Marcus Gavvery. Their work, believes, and programs inspired racial pride throughout the black community. “Du Bois believed that artistic and literary work could be used as a form of propaganda to help combat racial stereotypes and gain new respect for the race”( Mann HRB). This political agenda sparked change and inspiration for Black entertainment and culture because artists were using their talents to proclaim freedom from the inequality in the country. During the 1920’s, Langston Huges was a monumental literary artist because he changed the way that people wrote in that era. He wrote poetry, short stories, novels and plays that reflected black culture and became the first African American artist to support himself as a professional writer. His work was significant because of is use of imagery and use of raw and truthful phrases perfectly portrayed the frustrations of being black in America. In one of his famous writing “Theme for English B” Hughes wrote a poem to his professor about the education system and how a white dominated culture affects
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