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    The Harlem Renaissance and a New Cultural Identity Essay

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    A New Cultural Identity By Anus Overstress AkA Awesome, Cool, Brilliant and any other synonyms of these qualities Originally known as the New Negro Movement, the Harlem Renaissance was a period of immense social activity and great innovations among artist and writers. The movement’s name is derived from its origin; Harlem New York. At this time Harlem became the Mecca to which scholars, writers, musicians and photographers traveled.

    African American migration to the northern states played a major role in the initiation of this intellectual movement which harbored and preserved a new black cultural identity in multiple aspects. Prolific writers such as Longboats Hughes influenced many poets. The improvisation of Jazz and its syncopated rhythms was popularized by Jazz legends such as Duke Elongating and Louis Armstrong. The Harlem Renaissance began in the late sass’s after World War II. However much of the foundation of this movement was established by earlier generations of African American educators, students, and intellectuals.

    In the decades following the Civil War, multiple racial barriers to education were removed and African Americans took advantage of the new educational opportunities in prodigious numbers. Due to the harsh aspects of the Jim Crow laws in the south (which contained approximately 90 percent of the Black population at the time) and the discrimination and mistreatment that followed, African American individuals migrated to the urban northern states to escape the oppressive system of the rural south where they were able to find work.

    Some of the most prominent works created during this era were in the field of literature. Longboats Hughes was the epitome of prolific writers and a leader of the Harlem Renaissance. He is best known for his pomes which he wrote with the rhythmic pattern of Jazz and blues which influenced many poets. Hughes first book of poetry, The Weary Blues, was published in 1926. The book was very popular and established both his poetic style and his commitment to black themes and culture. Hughes skillful use of words to portray African American heritage played a major ole during this era.

    No aspect of the Harlem Renaissance shaped the United States as much as Jazz. Jazz flouted many musical conventions with its syncopated rhythms and improvised instrumental solos. Thousands of city dwellers flocked night after night to see the same performers. Singers such as Bessie Smith and Billie Holiday popularized blues and Jazz vocals. Duke Elongating and Louis Armstrong drew huge audiences as white Americans caught Jazz fever. For the first time white Americans could not look away.

    The Harlem Renaissance was a major period in American history. The northward migration by African Americans to escape white supremacy in the rural south played a major role in the ignition of this intellectual movement. Its origin Harlem, brought notice to great works that might have otherwise been lost. Writers of this era such as Longboats Hughes were extremely influential and Jazz legends Duke Elongating and Louis Armstrong took this form of art characterized by improvisation and syncopation to new levels of innovation.

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