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Promises Postponed, Harlem Renaissance, & the New Negro - 1920s

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Michele Goostree

on 15 March 2018

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Transcript of Promises Postponed, Harlem Renaissance, & the New Negro - 1920s

Promises Postponed,
Harlem Renaissance,
& the New Negro

Feminism in Transition
(Women can vote. Now what?)
League of Women Voters
(formerly National American Women's Suffrage Association)
Focused on educating female electorate
Advocated for:
Right to serve on juries
Equal pay for equal work
Laws to protect women and children
Sheppard-Towner Act
Established 1st federally funded health care
Prenatal care
Child health centers
Rural and isolated communities
What killed it?
Incorrect assumption all women mothers
Universal female issues ignored
Birth Control Advocates
Contraception not part of program
AMA (American Medical Association)
Disliked gov't-sponsored healthcare outside of nurse/physician supervision
Mexican Immigration
Push-Pull Factors of Mexican Immigration
Political violence from Mexican Revolution
Economic hardships due to Mexican Revolution
Agricultural expansion in American Southwest
Irrigation & large scale agribusiness = jobs
California: fruits and vegetables
Texas and Arizona: cotton
Michigan, Minnesota, and Colorado: sugar beets
Industrial cities recruited for wartime work
Between 1921-1929, an estimated 459,000 Mexicans entered U.S.

Source: U.S. Immigration Services
Permanent Communities Grew Rapidly.
A brief overview of changing immigration ideas/beliefs by Historian Eric Foner.
(He's smart)
A few reminders about immigration trends in the U.S. We've discussed these, but they've been scattered throughout the year.

It's a 1920s Civil Rights topic.
Unintended consequence of new
'Border Patrol' (1924)
Border crossing becomes a one-way migration rather than a two-way process
Poor housing
Low-paying, unskilled jobs
Inadequate healthcare
Banned from public works jobs
Skilled, educated struggle for jobs in:
Legal professions
Jim Crow examples
The above makes Mexicans resist applying for citizenship.
Mutualistas - Mutual Aid Societies
Social and political aid societies in Southwest and Midwest
Provide death benefits to widows
Challenged civil rights violations
Formed labor unions in California and Texas to fight discrimination
"Harlem Renaissance" Vocabulary
~Native to particular country
~Awareness of something
Racial Consciousness
~Awareness of people being identified by race
The "New Negro"
What is the "Harlem Renaissance"?
EXPLOSION of Art, Literature, & Music
Celebration of African heritage
Look into the indigenous roots!
Shifting Civil Rights Movement Philosophy
Alain Locke, 1925
Encouraged African Americans to look at cultural heritage
From "Accommodation" to "Advocacy"
Anti-lynching Legislation
Repeated attempts fail in '20s
Filibusters in Senate prevent identification as "crime"
1968: lynching labeled a felony
2005: Senate issued formal apology
The Jazz Age
1920s - period of no boundaries or rules
Music rejected traditional societal standards
How was jazz a symbol of the '20s?
Freedom! No boundaries!
First mass produced sound in assembly line era.
How did jazz bridge racial barriers?
Music doesn't know color.
How did African Americans feel about the popularity of jazz among whites?
Music is colorless
Excitement of '20s
Music is enjoyed ($)
Whites profit from black artist work.
White musicians taint sound
Jazz Greats!
Jazz Influence on Harlem
The Harlem Renaissance is more than just music...
"A great deal has been accomplished in this decade of 'renaissance.' ...Today, one may see undesirable stories, but one may also read stories about Negro singers, Negro actors, Negro authors, Negro poets. The connotations of the very word Negro have changed. A generation ago many Negroes were half or wholly ashamed of the term. Today, they have every reason to be proud of it."

~James Weldon Johnson, 1928
Langston Hughes
Works celebrated:
African American culture and life
Works challenged the contradictions of the era
Zora Neale Hurston
Wrote folk stories about 'real people'
Most works express female longing for independence
Feminism, explained:
Full transcript