The History of Harlem - Cultural Epicenter of America’s Black community

2254 Words 10 Pages
Over a significant time frame, African Americans have been forced to endure numerous hardships – one of which being the negatives stigmas that unfairly generalize their people, culture and way of life. Therese stereotypes of a whole nationality label Blacks as, “superstitious, lazy, ignorant, dirty, unreliable, (and even) criminal,” (“Stereotypes”). Such generalizations are products of the public’s perception, which has been diluted by rooted historic and current prejudice as well as the media’s conveyance of a well-known African American cultural center: Harlem. Despite negative connotations associated with it, Harlem stands as a community that strives to flourish and maintain its strong cultural status. George Canada, the founder of the …show more content…
These words, despite them coming straight out of an encyclopedia, hold a sense of pride. Weisbrot informs the reader the 20s were an obvious time for change, and states that Harlem was recognized as having great influence in African community and culture. In earlier American history, African Americans were unfairly excluded from the opportunity to be individuals or express themselves culturally. In the 20s, Harlem created an area where they are free to do so. According to Reuben’s account, which also carries it with a sense of pride, the Harlem Renaissance was a profound period in African American culture. This was more than a literary movement - it was a period of racial consciousness, as Marcus Garvey, a dynamic African leader, boldly dubbed “the back to Africa” movement. Being a prolific leader of the time, Garvey uses his influence to encourage cultural change. By looking back on the accomplishments of the time there is proof that this occurred, “the Harlem Renaissance brought the Black experience clearly within the General American cultural history,” (Reuben). After World War I, Reuben suggests that the Renaissance still flourished. Morale was rising again, and there was opportunity for American citizens to enjoy various forms of entertainment, which proliferated the Harlem Renaissance. The 20s was also known as
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