In a Minor Chord: Three Afro-American Writers and Their Search for Identity

By Darwin T. Turner | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Introduction

The Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s was the most exciting and important cultural movement which Afro- Americans had ever experienced. In fact, it was the first period during which a significant number of Americans actually examined Afro-American culture closely and encouraged increased productivity for artistic reasons.

By 1920, Afro-Americans had been publishing literary works for more than one hundred and fifty years: Lucy Terry, a slave in Deerfield, Massachusetts, is known to have composed a poem as early as 1746; Brutus and Jupiter Hammon wrote poetry and essays in the 1760s; and Phillis Wheatley, born in Africa and enslaved in Boston, had a collection of poems published in 1773. In the first half of the nineteenth century, while America debated the issue of slavery with intensifying fervor, additional Afro-Americans earned modest reputations in literature -- in particular, William Wells Brown for fiction and essays, Frances Harper for poetry, and Frederick Douglass for nonfiction. Nevertheless, during the first half of the century Americans generally turned to black writers for pathetic recitations of the agonies of slavery rather than for artistic literature.

After the Civil War, collections of spirituals and Joel Chandler Harris's collections of folktales familiarized some Americans with Afro-American talent for song and tale. Others, however, continued to doubt the edu

-xv-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
In a Minor Chord: Three Afro-American Writers and Their Search for Identity
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 156

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?