Black Chicago Paper #2: Black Chicago Renaissance Reader by Darlene Clark Hine A Renaissance is a cultural movement, rebirth, and reinvention. The Black Chicago Renaissance began in the 1930’s where Chicago experienced a cultural renaissance that lasted into the 1950’s and was in comparison of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920’s. I don’t believe that the Harlem and Chicago Renaissance should be compared due to the fact that these were two places that were of importance for black people that made a difference.
I think it’s irrational to compare the two due to blacks worked o hard for everything they had and I think Harlem and Chicago were two different places that did similar changes for where they lived to make a difference. In the book Hines touched on creativity of music, performing arts, visual, social science scholarship, and literary artistic expressions. These were gifts that blacks were blessed with to share with Chicago. Chicago became a place where numerous of African Americans became involved with the performing arts.
Blacks were really talented and they let it show through their music, art, and singing. Chicago was also a opular industrial center that gave an uncommon working class to the cultural work that took place in Chicago. This book analyzes the Black Chicago Renaissance in comparison to the Harlem Renaissance which took place in New York. The argument in the book in my opinion is which Renaissance made the largest impact between Chicago and New York to the world. Chicago had a major black arts movement.
Chicago artists were hardworking class people creating the “people’s art”. Their goal was to create art around the community for the people of the community. Is the Black Chicago Renaissance the rival of the New York Harlem Renaissance? New York which was really famous to the world did have a positive impact on the world due to the historical people that played their roles during the renaissance. As well as Chicago had their historical people who played their roles as well as artists and musicians. W. E. B Dubois was a part of the Renaissance in New York.
W. E. B Dubois was a “big deal” in Harlem during the time of the renaissance. On the other hand Chicago didn’t have wealth sponsors to support their art. Chicagds artists were more on their own. Chicago wasn’t the focal point for publishing but New York was because of its location and people. I don’t feel that New York deserves more credit because of the musicians over there had more resources to money. Artists were not introduced as they were in New York. Chicago was not introduced nationally. But Chicago became a focal point in other ways.
Chicago and their new residents that came from the South mixed the culture of people that were already in Chicago. Thomas Dorsey was the father of gospel music the citys blues. Chicago was building at one day at a time. They started to develop black businesses and enough residents who worked in steel mills, meat packaging, industry and factories to support the arts. When the blacks created strong support for themselves they were Just fine. Charles was an artistic and political development provided a window in Chicagds cultural politics during the 1930’s.
Charles White was a painter during this time he painted libraries and churches around the city. White was a leading fgure on the South Side of Chicago. A quote that I liked by him was, “I had only my brushes to fight with”. I like this quote because it didn’t matter about what someone tried to tell him he stood strong on what he believed in and continued to paint. Charles used his art as a weapon in Chicago. He felt as if he had no voice. He could express himself through his art. There were a lot of young artists who put together art, politics, and the struggle for civil rights.
Archibald Motley was an up and coming artist during the Chicago black Renaissance. He made the same impact Jacob Lawrence did on New York. Margaret Boroughs was an artist and teacher who then later on co-found the Dusable Museum of African American History. Hine said, “People have been so consumed by the ghetto model of Chicagds South Side and wondering how could people forced to live under restrictive housing ovenants be creating art when there was so much suffering and pain? ‘ Hine said. “But art flourished. This quote by Hine really stood out to me by what she stated. This is a deep quote for the reason being that it is true that people do believe that the South Side of Chicago is a “ghetto’ place then with artists trying to create art in a place so ghetto. In retrospect it didn’t matter about what was going it Just mattered about what blacks were interested in and they were interested in creating art. People didn’t even want them to have that to themselves. Art bloomed throughout Chicago ecause of the blacks love for art.
When the Harlem Renaissance took its rest artists like Langston Hughes left the East Coast and spent time in Chicago. Langston Hughes was an outstanding poet and was a writer for the Chicago Defender. Chicago did become the blues capital of the world. Richard Wright who came to Chicago in 1927 started writing “blues songs”. When Richard Wright arrived in Chicago he was poor and underweight. He had to nourish his body back to health by eating bananas Just to work at the post office because to work there you had to be least 1251bs. In Chicago social class played a bigger role than race.
You were put in categories if you were rich, poor, middle-class, working-class, and low- class. Most of the artists were of the working-class because they had Jobs outside of being artists. The Chicago Renaissance winded down in the 1950’s when Emmett Till a teenager was murdered on the South Side of Chicago and Just the beginning of the civil rights movement. The Black Renaissance was indeed a movement and declaration of black humanity and art. The Black Chicago Renaissance deserves their credit and respect for our people and their contributions.