Harlem Renaissance Essay

809 words - 4 pages

During the Great Migration, an influx of African Americans fled to Northern cities from the South wishing to flee oppression and the harshness of life as sharecroppers. They brought about a new, black social and cultural identity- a period that later became known as the Harlem Renaissance. Originally the Harlem Renaissance was referred to as the “New Negro Movement” (Reader’s Companion.) It made a huge impact on urban life. The Harlem Renaissance played a major role in African American art, music, poetic writing styles, culture and society. It all started after World War I and during the Great Depression in New York’s Harlem neighborhood where a lot of people lived. The first building ...view middle of the document...

Dance Clubs and Jazz became popular in the early 1920s. It was referred to as the Jazz Age during the Harlem Renaissance. The Origin of Jazz came from West Africa and African American blues in New Orleans. Jazz changed America’s society drastically. Quickly, Jazz brought a diverse amount of people together. People disliked Jazz because it made people “boogie” and it changed the old western civilized ways (Harlem Renaissance.) The Cotton Club was Harlem’s most famous dance club. It is where most blacks won their fame as a musician, dancer or entertainer. The Cotton Club seated 400 people and was one of the classiest nightclubs located on the second floor of an apartment building (After Hours.) It was owned by well- known gangsters and was hard to get in. The club only had all black entertainers but most whites were in the audience no blacks were allowed as guests. It was soon to be closed because the business violated the 18th Amendment but quickly reopened.
Harlem Labor and Race riots were extreme, when housing rates decreased, poverty increased and the 18th Amendment- Prohibition was ratified. The 18th Amendment produced more crime and violence in the streets of Harlem. Soon, a new generation of gangsters arose. Gangsters would hire people to smuggle in large amounts of alcohol from places like the Caribbean. Also, it forced people to...

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