The Harlem Renaissance: What Was It, and Why Does It Matter? On February 28, 2014, Humanities Texas held a one-day teacher professional development workshop in Austin focusing on the history and literature of the Harlem Renaissance. Wintz is a specialist in the Harlem Renaissance and in African American carrie the musical sheet music pdf thought.
The Harlem Renaissance in the West. What was the Harlem Renaissance and when did it begin? This seemingly simple question reveals the complexities of the movement we know varyingly as the New Negro Renaissance, the New Negro Movement, the Negro Renaissance, the Jazz Age, or the Harlem Renaissance. To answer the question it is necessary to place the movement within time and space, and then to define its nature. This task is much more complex than it might seem.
Traditionally the Harlem Renaissance was viewed primarily as a literary movement centered in Harlem and growing out of the black migration and the emergence of Harlem as the premier black metropolis in the United States. Music and theater were mentioned briefly, more as background and local color, as providing inspiration for poetry and local color for fiction. However, there was no analysis of the developments in these fields. Fortunately, this narrow view has changed. The Harlem Renaissance is increasingly viewed through a broader lens that recognizes it as a national movement with connections to international developments in art and culture that places increasing emphasis on the non-literary aspects of the movement. Understanding the origins depends on how we perceive the nature of the Renaissance. For those who view the Renaissance as primarily a literary movement, the Civic Club Dinner of March 21, 1924, signaled its emergence.
This event did not occur in Harlem, but was held almost one hundred blocks south in Manhattan at the Civic Club on Twelfth Street off Fifth Avenue. So the simple celebratory dinner morphed into a transformative event with over one hundred attendees. African Americans were represented by W. Du Bois, James Weldon Johnson, and others of the black intelligentsia, along with Fauset and a representative group of poets and authors. The Civic Club dinner significantly accelerated the literary phase of the Harlem Renaissance. Frederick Allen, editor of Harper’s, approached Countee Cullen, securing his poems for his magazine as soon as the poet finished reading them.
As the dinner ended Paul Kellogg, editor of Survey Graphic, hung around talking to Cullen, Fauset, and several other young writers, then offered Charles S. For those who viewed the Harlem Renaissance in terms of musical theater and entertainment, the birth occurred three years earlier when Shuffle Along opened at the 63rd Street Musical Hall. Poet Langston Hughes also saw Shuffle Along as a seminal event in the emergence of the Harlem Renaissance. It introduced him to the creative world of New York, and it helped to redefine and energize music and nightlife in Harlem. In the process, it introduced white New Yorkers to black music, theater, and entertainment and helped generated the white fascination with Harlem and the African American arts that was so much a part of the Harlem Renaissance. Swift, bright, funny, rollicking, and gay, with a dozen danceable, singable tunes.