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Amcult 208 1st Edition Lecture 8Outline of Last Lecture I. Technology and ChangeOutline of Current Lecture II. The Harlem RenaissanceIII. Black and White RootsIV. The Beats BeginCurrent LectureThe Harlem Renaissance: the flowering of African American cultural and intellectual life during the 1920s and 1930s- The Harlem Renaissance grew out of the changes that had taken place in the Negro American community since the abolition of slaveryo “negrotarian”: we dig black culture, we aren’t black, but we are like on the periphery and we want to be black and we can’t - By the early 1900s African American community had established a middle class, especially in the citieso Harlem became a center of this expanding negro middle classo Madame CJ Walker: black beauty parlors- The first stage of the Harlem Renaissance 1917 Three Plays for a Negro Theatreo Written by white playwright RidgelyTorrence, featured negro actors’ conveying complex human emotions and yearningso Rejected stereotypes of Blackface and minstrel show- 1919: “If We Must Die” Claude McKay published this militant sonnet, sounded a note of defiance in the face of racism and the nationwide race riots and lynchings then taking place.- Overt racial pride came to be represented in the idea of the New Negro, who through intellect and production of literature, art, music could challenge the pervading racism andstereotypes to promote socialist politics and racial and social integration.o Creation of art and literature would serve to uplift the raceo Used art to prove their humanity and demand for equality, led for more opportunities for blacks to be publishedo Authors published novels, magazines, and newsapers during the time Jean Toomer, Jessie Fauset, Claude McKay, Zora Neale Hurston, James Weldon Johnson, Alain Locke, Langston HughesThese notes represent a detailed interpretation of the professor’s lecture. GradeBuddy is best used as a supplement to your own notes, not as a substitute.Dominating Pop Culture- 1900-1935: African American musical dominance within American culture- technology-records, film, radio- allowed the two cultures (black and white) to mix like never before The Beats Begin- Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Neal Cassady, William Burroughso John Clellon Holmes: wrote Go, Lucian Carr: college buddy, Gregory Corse, Lawrence Ferlinghetti: opens up the first paperback bookstore, Herbert Huncke: important player, but on the periphery, Gary Snyder: zen Buddhist monk man and bring back intense spirituality that captures Ginsberg and Kerouac Michael McCLure, Diane diPrima, Denise Levertov, Kenneth Rexroth, Ted Joans, Anne WaldmanJack Kerouac: father of Beat generation- Jean-Louis Lebris de Kerouaco Nickname: Jack, Ti Jean (little John)o Born March 12th 1922 in Lowell Massachusettso Parents: French Canadian Leo and Gabrielle, his father ws a printer and local businessmano Siblings: older sister Caroline and brother Gerad who died at the age of nine- Education: altar boy at St. Jean Baptiste Cathedral in 1932o Junior High School: skipped sixth grade, became member of writers’ club, begins writing novelo High School: football, baseball, track, Lowell High School, gets scholarship to Columbia University- Columbia: breaks leg playing football, coach tells him to walk it off, Jack is so mad that he gives up sports, devoted all his attention to writingAllen Ginsberg- Born June 3rd, 1926 in Newark, New Jersey, brother is 5 years his senioro Louis Ginsberg is a modestly successful published poet and high school teacher and Jewish democratic socialisto Allen is a red-diaper baby: son of socialist parents, spent summer at socialist campo Naomi is a communist and irrepressible nudist who becomes tragically insane in early adulthoodo Father Louis recites Dickinson, Shelley, Keats, Poe and Milton to his children during their early childhood- Mother Naomi begins mental decline 1932-1935: hospitalized for the first time, leaving father Louis to care for the Ginsberg children aloneo She suffers a series of mental breakdowns, suggesting her illness may be lifelong- In 1937, 11 year old Allen Ginsberg starts capturing his thoughts in his first personal journal- Also in 1937, Naomi attempts to commit suicideo In 1939, he graduates from grammar school and begins high school, starts to love Walt Whitmano 1941: Naomi drags Allen to go travel with hero in 1943 he begins education at ColumbiaWilliam Burroughs- born in St. Louis, Mo in 1914, incredibly wealthy family, father was a multi-millionaire- homosexual tendencies, wanted to alter reality through opium- he graduated from Harvard with degree in English in 1936, loses heterosexual virginity in East St. Louis brothel, kept having homosexual fantasieso traveled in Europe in his early 20s, studies medicine in Veniceo marries a Jewish woman to help her escape the Nazis- goes back to Harvard to study Anthropology- Like Adler’s antinomian personality, Burroughs rejects the affluent lifestyle of his family and its rewardso Plunged into an alternative lifestyle that included drugs, odd jobs and bisexualityo While working in the shipyards of New York, becomes addicted to heroinNeal Cassady- Was born in 1926 in Salt Lake City, raised by an alcoholic father in skid row hotels of Denver’s Larimer Streeto Between ages of 14 and 21, he has stolen more than 500 cars “I need to go, and I don’t know how to do it”- So… Who were these guys anyway and what did they want?The Psychic State of Youth- Post WWII America was not the picture of “normalcy” that many people would have us believe:o It was about the bland selling out of the “good life”oo It was about political retrenchment, political conservatism has nostalgia for past that it wishes existed but in reality, did not actually existo It was about a conservative laisse faire attitudeo It was about nuclear anxiety, the Beats were 18-25 when the bombs were dropped Begin to look at how the African-Americans lived, bc they could have been destroyed at any minute- When mainstream culture has any breach of its norms, its most primal anxieties and fears emerge and must be dealt with.o A main reason for this reaction is, as was pointed out by anthropologist Claude Levi-Strauss “mainstream culture interprets breaking the rules as being the same as the absence of


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