Analysis Of Harlem Dancer

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The 1920’s was a time of great change in America. It was dubbed “the roaring 20’s” appropriately as it brought with it a freight train like initiation of social movement across America. The Harlem Renaissance was a marked period of growth and identification for the African American culture originating from its Harlem epicenter in the northeast. The intellectual and artistic movement brought recognition to black arts, literature, and music, and for the first time in history, earned status, respect, and credibility in a world powered by white. Not only did we see rise to black artists during this time, but also a shift in content intrigued the masses. Black musicians brought the stylings of Jazz music, of which became highly regarded, and transcended beyond skin color. Black writers, such as Claude McKay, took to depicting “black problems” and ways of life, which was not part of traditional Anglo literature. It was both a means to reach out and connect as a color-coded brotherhood, and provided insight for all into the life of black America. In his poem Harlem Dancer, McKay used a dualistic point of view narration to allow the reader to view the subject, his dancer, through the eyes of many. His methods, in a sense, allowing us to know her in a way that she would not be understood in a single …show more content…
Jobs were scarce, especially for black society, and difficulty was unwaveringly relentless for women of color. Many were forced into working any job they could find, which for a woman, was not uncommon to require compromise to morality. As McKay introduces us to his “Harlem Dancer”, we see not the glamour of a movie star, or Broadway sweetheart, but that of a strong yet beautifully vulnerable black woman in the midst of a cruel and unrelenting world. As this poem unfolds the object of our exploration, many sides of the same die emerge through wording and presentation

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