Bowles, Paul. Without Stopping; An Autobiography. New York: Ecco, Braithwaite, William Stanley. Christian, Barbara. Cooper, Wayne F. Du Bois, W. The Correspondence of W. DuBois: Selections — Herbert Aptheker. Gilroy, Paul. The New Negro, an Interpretation. Maxwell, William J. Complete Poems of Claude McKay.
Bill V. Mullen and James Smethurst, eds. McKay, Claude. A Long Way from Home.
These years marked the beginning of the Great Migration, a period between to during which millions of African Americans migrated from the South to the North to flee the economic exploitation that accompanied life as a Southern sharecropper or tenant farmer, as well as violent and pervasive racism.
They sought well-paying industrial jobs left vacant in the wake of World War I, which cut off cheap immigrant labor from Europe and induced white American laborers to join the armed forces. More than , African Americans settled in Harlem alone. The literary aspect of the Harlem Renaissance is said to have begun with a dinner at the Civic Club celebrating African American writers.
The likes of Countee Cullen and W. Even before the Civic Club dinner, writers associated with the Harlem Renaissance were publishing important early works. Yet the economic boom that had allowed African American culture to flourish in the s was about to end.
In October , a stock market crash sparked what is now known as the Great Depression. African American artists saw their audiences and support dwindle as budgets and disposable incomes shrank. Though scholars hold differing views as to when the Harlem Renaissance ended, some point to the Harlem race riot of as a bookend to the movement. When rumors circulated that police had murdered a black Puerto Rican teenager for stealing a ten-cent pocket knife from a local store, more than 10, people took to the streets in Harlem.
The protests soon turned violent and resulted in three deaths, arrests, and more than two million dollars in property damage. Other economic factors brought changes to Harlem, and many residents moved away from the area. Prose Home Harriet Blog. Visit Home Events Exhibitions Library.
Newsletter Subscribe Give. Poetry Foundation. Back to Previous. An Introduction to the Harlem Renaissance. Tracing the poetic work of this crucial cultural and artistic movement. We younger Negro artists who create now intend to express our individual dark-skinned selves without fear or shame. If white people are pleased we are glad.
We know we are beautiful. And ugly too. Fenton Johnson. December, Claude McKay. If We Must Die. Joy in the Woods.
To the Swimmer. Countee Cullen.
The Heart of a Woman. Georgia Douglas Johnson. The Measure.
The struggles and frustrations Larsen revealed in the black female protagonists of her novels Quicksand and Passing likely register the problems their creator faced as a sophisticated New Negro woman trying to find her own way in the supposedly liberated racial and sexual atmosphere of the s.
Like Toomer, Larsen fell silent after the Harlem Renaissance. Of the major fiction writers of the Harlem Renaissance, only Florida native Hurston , whose early short stories appeared in the late s but who did not publish a novel until after the Harlem Renaissance had ended, published a masterwork that guaranteed her permanent reputation among African American novelists.
In Their Eyes Were Watching God , Hurston embodied the sustaining ethos of a vibrant working-class Southern black community in a woman whose sassy tongue and heroic reclamation of herself make Janie Crawford the greatest single literary character created by the New Negro generation.
African American editors such as Charles S. Anthologies, particularly of poetry, abounded during the Harlem Renaissance, enhancing the literary reputations of both the writers represented in them and their editors. Johnson Ebony and Topaz  , and Cullen Caroling Dusk  , to mention only a handful of the most noteworthy. Load Previous Page.
One Way to Heaven. He first toured Europe in White guests predominately were publishers and critics; Carl Van Doren, editor of Century magazine, spoke for this group calling upon the young writers in the audience to make their contribution to the "new literary age" emerging in America. The exploration of black southern heritage was reflected in novels by Jean Toomer and Zora Neale Hurston, as well as in Jacob Lawrence's art. In the early twentieth century, New York had replaced Boston as the center of the book publishing industry. In addition, the Negro Renaissance became a part of the general revolt by the writers of the decade against the gross materialism and outmoded moral values of America's new industrial society. I registered at the Y.
The rise of the New Negro During the first two decades of the 20th century, rampant racial injustices, led by weekly reports of grisly lynchings, gave strong impetus to protest writing.