They knew that there was no hope for that in the South, where racism was the strongest, so many traveled North in a large movement known as the Great Migration. Other factors played a role in this movement, such as natural disasters and the need for education and employment. The most popular destination for negroes looking for a better place to live was Harlem, New York. Harlem provided decent, nonsegregated education, and also better hope for good employment opportunities. However, this city was flooded with new African Americans, and it, like many others, became an identifiably black city.
In Harlem, New York the “New Negro” was born by various intellectuals, artists, musicians, and writers who celebrated cultural creativity and nobility throughout the African-American community. A span of ideas on what it meant to be African-American influenced many people to partake in art, music, and writing. During the 1920’s, the endless innovation made Harlem the “Mecca” for African-American civilization. Contributors and leaders recognized this as a resurrection of identity and spirituality which created, the “Harlem Renaissance.” Although the Harlem Renaissance shaped the African-American community substantially, there was still dispute. White Americans weren’t educated about African-American culture, segregation kept both races from coming together, and discrimination within the black community made light-skinned people suppose they were superior to dark-skinned people.
With racism still rampant leaving economic opportunities, scarce, creative expression was available to African Americans in the early 20th century. During the Harlem renaissance, they were the great migration. It was the end of the American Civil war, in 1965 was in increased opportunity for African Americans in education and employment. This made the first black middle class in America. In 1866, racial equality delivered a crushing blow when Plessy v. Ferguson declared racial segregation acceptable.
His work was of high quality and won a favorable reception from the major publishing houses, who were willing to promote his writings only for commercial reasons. Many of these publishing houses stressed their notion of Harlem as an alien, but also as an exotic and unknown place of strange new wonders. During the Harlem Renaissance, Hughes had four major writings that promoted the African Negritude Movement. The first was a critical essay entitled "The Negro Artist and the Racial Movement," which discussed the excitement of this time period. Later, he would write "The Big Sea," an autobiography stating the hardships in his life due to his race.
She used her good and bad past experiences as influences for her works. The Harlem Renaissance was a cultural movement of blacks that helped changed their identity. Creative expression flourished because it was the only chance blacks had to express themselves in any way and be taken seriously. World War I and the need for workers up North were a few pull factors for the migration and eventually the Renaissance. A push was the growing discrimination and danger blacks were being faced with in the southern cities.
The Harlem Renaissance was one of the most culturally important reformations in America. The Harlem Renaissance directly influenced many great civil rights leaders, and one could argue was the foundation for the battle of equality. Many great members of the Harlem Renaissance committed their whole life in order to improve race relations for themselves and for the future of the race. The strength African Americans achieved during the period after slavery through until the Harlem Renaissance provided them with enough strength to persevere. The atrocities African Americans went through during the early 20th century can only be matched by the years of enduring slavery.
One distinguished work of literature was Langston Hughes’ “The Negro Artists and the Radical Mountain”. According to Henry Louis Gates, in his book Harlem Renaissance Lives: from the African American National Biography, the essay was: an artistic declaration of independence—from the stereotypes that whites held of African Americans and the expectations they had of their creative works, as well as independence from the expectations that black leaders and black writers had of black writers and the expectations black writers had for their own work (Gates viii).White interest, however, did not only lie in black literature but also their nightclubs. The Cotton Place and Connie’s Inn were among the most popular nightclubs with the white population (Hutchinson 2). They featured black entertainment to white audiences and really helped tear down the cultural barrier between the two races. At the clubs, the whites would be exposed to Jazz music, different forms of art, and some theatrical performances.
Harlem Renaissance During the 1920's, the spiritual, social, and literary eagerness that raced through Harlem could be called the most important period of self-discovery in African-American history after the Civil War. Black literature went through a tremendous outbreak in Harlem, which is a district of New York City. In the middle of the changing atmosphere, a small group of black men and women began a public relations campaign to promote what they called the "New Negro" movement. While these men and women promoted art and literature, they were credited with starting much more than just and intellectual movement. This movement included poetry and writing, which forever changed the African-American lifestyle into a unique and more educated culture.
This essay will investigate the forces both internally in the communities that affected the thinking of Black people of these two time periods as well as the external factors brought about by governments’ and other organizations’ oppressive tactics designed to prevent the evolution of Blacks in America. These two time periods were both oppressive to Black people, but those living in Harlem, New York from 1920 until 1930 found ways to express themselves through the arts at a level that had never been seen in the Black community, and through their artistic voice found freedom. The thoughts and attitudes of Blacks in the early 1900s differed tremendously from that of Blacks in Harlem, New York during the Harlem Renaissance. In the early 1900s, most Blacks still lived in the rural South, but this was changing. The atmosphere in the post reconstruction south had rekindled a white movement that sought to subdue any efforts of advancement by Blacks.