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Culture and Society in the 1930s and 1940s
Transcript of Culture and Society in the 1930s and 1940s
Black migrants helped make St. Louis a national cultural center in the 1930s and 1940s. The Political content of black
stirred debate in the black
community. Black artists who
wanted to reap financial rewards
from their creativity had to
compromise and adapt their work
to make it acceptable to a white
Black institutions played a key
role in the process of improving the black culture. Black institutions
were important, in part, because
African American artists faced
institutional racism in the culture
industry. Mainstream, commercial media
marginalized black performers
and presented their audience
with stereotype black caracters.
However African Americans produced thier own popular culture intended for a black audience.
In comics and films, they created positive images of African Americans, images that reinforced the black audience's ideals and values.
Chicago was the center of black culture in the 1930s and 1940s. The artists of the Chigcago Renaissance drew inspiration from the African Americans who migrated to Chicago looking for a better life.
Jazz, gospel, and dance were all shaped by the culture of the Chicago Renaissance. Many black graphic artists of the 1930s belonged to the social realism school. Social realists treid to fuse propaganda with art, to make their art socially and politically relevant.
Similarly, black writers explored black identity and described the reality of black urban life in America. Richard Wright and Ralph Ellison's work brought these issues to the attentionof the general reading public. Athletes like Jesse Owens, Joe Louis and Jackie Robinson inspired African Americans with pride and hope. They demonstrated to the general public that, when unconstrained by racism, blacks could compete at the highest levels.
Unlike other sports, baseball, remained segregated until 1947 when Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier. Black churches played an important part in helping migrants adjust to urban life. They provided an enduring set of core values that transcended the urban/ rural divide.
During the Depression, churches provided both material and spiritual support to their congregations.
Artist Of The 1930s and 1940s comics and films were created at this time by African Americans Chicago's Renaissance Joe Louis By: Juan Carlos Bernal