American Slavery

American Slavery

Length: 797 words (2.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
 The purpose of this report was for me to research and explore the connection between African American women and music.  Since prior to the slave decades, music has been an integral part of African American society, and served as a form of social, economic, and emotional support in African American communities in the past and present.  This paper will cover three different types of secular music that emerged during the slave days, through the civil war, reconstruction, and depression periods.  They are blues, jazz, and gospel music.  Each of these forms of music are still in existence today.  In addition to exploring the history of each of these genres of music, this report will identify three African American female music legends, Bessie Smith, Emma Barrett, and Mahalia Jackson.
Blues emerged in the period between the end of the civil war, and the beginning of the 20th century.  Originating in the fields of the rural south, it became popular after the emancipation of the slaves.  In this form of music, the singer and composer is one in the same, a characteristic not evident in the spiritual songs of the slave communities.  Spirituals were somewhat of a passage way for blues.  Blues followed blacks to urban societies as spirituals followed the slaves onto the plantations.  The differences between these types of music were that spirituals were collective, whereas an individual sang blues.  Blues attributed to the evolution of black society toward individualism after the collective society of slavery.  Blues became know as the music of the black working class.  It was a way for African Americans to express the modern problems of economics, social errors, and poverty and power struggles they faced after they became free.  African Americans were still living in unjust societies, where jobs were hard to find.  They began to migrate north, but the case remained the same.  They used music for economic gain in nightclubs, corner halls, publishing, and recording.
     One of the greatest African American female blues singers was Bessie Smith.  She was born on April 15, 1894 or 1898.  The exact date is unknown.  Her father William was a preacher, who died when Bessie was very young.  This left her mother to raise seven children on her own.  When Bessie was nine years old, her mother Laura had passed away, and two of her brothers had died as well.  The oldest sister brought up the five remaining brothers and sisters.  Prior to the death of Bessie’s mother, she was singing on a street corner to the accompaniment of her brother’s guitar.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"American Slavery." 123HelpMe.com. 17 Feb 2020
    <https://www.123helpme.com/view.asp?id=52348>.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Abolition of Slavery and the American Constitution Essay

- In 1688 the first American movement was the one to abolish slavery when the German and Quakers decent in Pennsylvania. The Quakers establishment had no immediate action for the Quaker Petition against slavery. The first American abolition society was the Relief of Free Negroes Unlawfully by the Quakers that had strong religious objections of slavery. In 1756 John Woolman gave up his business to campaign against slavery along with other Quakers. Thomas Paine was the first to write an article about the United States abolition of slavery and it was titled “African Slavery in America”....   [tags: american history, slavery]

Research Papers
726 words (2.1 pages)

Slavery And The American Culture Essay

- Slavery was an institution which everyone expected to end but they did not know how it. Thus it expanded and laid its roots deep into the American culture. George Mason may have subconsciously touched an important point which I believe was the primary reason why slavery got completely embedded into American history. Mason “bragged about how Virginia and Maryland had banned the ‘infernal traffic’ of human beings. However, he worried that if South Carolina and Georgia were allowed to import slaves, then the greed of those states would want them to get slaves as well” (Page 10)....   [tags: American Civil War, Slavery in the United States]

Research Papers
853 words (2.4 pages)

Slavery And The American Civil War Essay

- When mentioning southern expansion in the years prior to the American Civil War, what places come to mind. While most people think of the west as the closest and quickest place the southern states could have expanded the institution of slavery, one does not typically consider Cuba as a likely location. The island of Cuba served as a valid choice for many southern expansionists in the name of slavery, not only because its land was well suited and had been exposed to slavery, but also it was believed that Cuban planters would be open to United States intervention....   [tags: American Civil War, Slavery in the United States]

Research Papers
712 words (2 pages)

Slavery And The American Civil War Essay

- When mentioning southern expansion in the years prior to the American Civil War, what places come to mind. While most people think of the west as the closest and quickest place the southern states could have expanded the institution of slavery, one does not typically consider Cuba as a likely location. The island of Cuba served as a valid choice for many southern expansionists in the name of slavery, not only because its land was well suited and had been exposed to slavery, but also it was believed that Cuban planters would be open to United States intervention....   [tags: American Civil War, Slavery in the United States]

Research Papers
1206 words (3.4 pages)

American Slavery Essay

- Slavery, especially in America, has been an age old topic of riveting discussions. Specialist and other researchers have been digging around for countless years looking for answers to the many questions that such an activity provided. They have looked into the economics of slavery, slave demography, slave culture, slave treatment, and slave-owner ideology (p. ix). Despite slavery being a global issue, the main focus is always on American slavery. Peter Kolchin effectively illustrates in his book, American Slavery how slavery evolved alongside of historical controversy, the slave-owner relationship, how slavery changed over time, and how America compared to other slave nations around the worl...   [tags: USA History Slavery African American]

Research Papers
972 words (2.8 pages)

Essay Slavery During The American Revolution

- Slavery has played a major role in colonial America since European colonization. When Europe colonized America, there was a lot of work that needed to be done. With the vast land and lack of laborers, slaves were introduced to the new world. Dutch ships brought African slaves into America and started to use slaves as laborers. Slaves became the solution to the problem in hand. During the American Revolution, Slavery was an issue that was overlooked by the people and government. The people of America just wanted their independence and liberty from Great Britain....   [tags: Slavery in the United States, American Civil War]

Research Papers
2085 words (6 pages)

Essay on Slavery For African American Slaves

- From 1750 until 1800 the colonial United States endured a period of enormous achievement along with a substantial amount of struggle. Before 1750, the new colony’s first struggle was between the colonists and England over who would have leadership within the New World. Once settled, the issues emerged from within the colonies themselves, particularly with the “belongings” they brought and imported. African American slaves were seen as property, and were not given any innate rights such as liberty or freedom when following their master to the New World....   [tags: American Civil War, Slavery in the United States]

Research Papers
1385 words (4 pages)

Essay about American Slavery

- American Slavery Between 1830 and 1860, a time of increasing national divisions over slavery, numerous accounts of slave life were published. These accounts of life under slavery almost invariably had either abolitionist or pro slavery agendas. Slaves in the ante-bellum South lived under a wide variety of circumstances, and held a variety of positions, including household servant, wagon driver, iron foundry workers and skilled artisan. Nine out of ten slaves however, worked as farm laborers, growing cotton, tobacco, rice, and other products....   [tags: Slavery Essays]

Research Papers
2923 words (8.4 pages)

American Slavery Essay

- Enormous changes swept through nearly every facet of American society in the years between the American Revolution and the Civil War, and the institution of slavery was no exception to this rule. Prior to the Revolution, slavery existed in every American colony. The growing population of settlers was founded on and maintained by notions of inequality, in which indentured servants and slaves provided the necessary manpower for the development of a largely agricultural economy and the settlement of an ever-diminishing frontier....   [tags: Slavery in the United States]

Research Papers
2897 words (8.3 pages)

Essay on American Slavery

- The Constitution of the United States was first created in 1787, to create a structure and establish the responsibilities of the American government. The goals of its drafters were to protect the inherent rights of citizens of the United States of America, establish a Government run by the people, and separate the government’s powers between three different branches (Executive, Legislative and Judicial). By accomplishing the goals of the Constitution, its drafters unified the people of the United States and created a bond between the states....   [tags: Slavery Essays]

Research Papers
962 words (2.7 pages)

Related Searches

  The money that she made went to support the family.  At the age of eighteen, she began performing professionally as a dancer.  While traveling the south and mid-west, she met Ma Rainey, “The Mother of Blues”.  She joined the most influential agency handling black artists, Theater Owners’ Booking Association (TOBA).  In February 1923, Bessie recorded for Columbia Record Company.  Her songs “Down-hearted Blues” and “Gulf Coast Blues” sold 780,000 copies in less than six months.  The contract Bessie signed with Columbia yielded a $20,000 yearly salary.  Her popularity increased rapidly, and TOBA was able to book her for theater and club shows paying up to $2,500 per week for personal appearances.  Life for Bessie became hectic, as she was unable to manage such large sums of money.  By 1928, her popularity leveled off due to a decline in the popularity of blues.  In addition to this, TOBA folded in the summer of 1930.  In the same year, Columbia renegotiated her contract for half of the original contract of 1923.  And, in 1931, Columbia dropped her altogether.  The swing era was emerging, and taking over where blues was leaving off.  Bessie attempted to make a transition to the new genre of music.  Late September 26, 1937, she left Memphis, Tennessee, for Darling Mississippi, when her car struck a parked van.  Bessie died the following morning at a black hospital.  She was buried in Sharon Hill, Pennsylvania.
     Like blues, jazz began to shape during slavery, and in the years after the civil war.  The end of slavery meant the end of an isolation period that prevented blacks from sharing ideas and art forms such as music.  Jazz differed from blues, because it was not much different than the slave spirituals.  Jazz was an approach to feelings, personal expression, pain and pleasure of physical life.  It was combination of spirituals and a new form of music.  Black women contributed to the development of jazz.  During slavery, they wrote songs about, and that became a part of every day experience.  In the late 1800’s, ex-slaves bought small organs.  Work songs and spirituals were recreated on the organs.  This became a main source of family entertainment, and the creation of jazz music.  New Orleans, Louisiana became the first great jazz center.
     One of the greatest female, African American jazz singers was born in New Orleans, a few years before the turn of the century.  Her name was Emma Barrett.  She was a self-taught musician who became a jazz legend.  As a little girl, Emma use to listen to the guys tha..
Return to 123HelpMe.com