Blog Post #2, question 2.
What is Reed's argument about why music was so important to the Civil Rights movement? What are some of the specific roles it played in the movement? How does this relate or compare to your own experiences of the role of music in everyday life, or the relation of music to politics?
Reed explains in detail the purpose and effects of the strong influence of music during the Civil Rights movement. The role of music had many uses and purposes according to Reed, but in my opinion from the reading it was developed by the afro-american community to counter the oppresion of the racist society. In one form I believe that upon enduring centuries of slavery a culture of resistance developed where one of the many practices(against slavery) developed which included the use of music as a powerful tool. This was a strong factor in countering the torment of suffering slavery. Perhaps orginally used to communicate in code, but also to motivate, uplift the spirits of the many who had relatively few other options to counter face or oppose thier oppresors. As detailed in the chapter " Singing Civil rights", The Chirstian religion was a very dominant force in organizing, developing and leading the Civil Rights movement and upon reaching the 1950's the role of singing effectively evolved and was in use as a tool for the movement. Youth movements as well as older conservative movements for "Freedom" applied the use of music to overcome fear, express solidarity and communicate a message. most notable during protests, the communal chanting and singing of thier message reflects much of what can be seen in media to this day; almost anyone who watches a documentary on the Civil Rights movement can recognise a gathering most associated with singing songs of peace, freedom, and racial equality.
I believe music is a powerful force in humanity because it influences behavior. Whether your a mother singing a lluaby to sleeping child or a boxer listening to the rocky theme before a fight, the power of music will always have a role and use in everyday life. Today you can hear politicians attempt to win a following by using music as a tool; in thier political campaigns they choose the audience and a favorable song to address the setting, trying to create some kind of commonality with thier target, as if they really represent them and share simlarities, I only know that my favorite presidents are dead presidents in my wallet.
Blog post #1, question 1.
In his essay "The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain," poet Langston Hughes talks about the challenges faced by Black artists. What does he see as the main challenges? Then look at the selection of poems from the Harlem Renassaince from your packet. What connections do you see between Hughes' essays and these poems?
Langston Hughes mentions in his essay a "mountain" that represents challenges for black artists. In this passage Langston hughes describes in hiw own words what the challenge represents. "...the mountain standing in the way of any true Negro art in America—this urge within the race toward whiteness, the desire to pour racial individuality into the mold of American standardization, and to be as little Negro and as much American as possible." During this era in the 1920's the Jim Crow laws were influential in the south and nationwide/worldwide racism was very abundant and openly expressed as well, hence in my prespective Langston hughes very much openly expresses this social reality in his works; where dominant societies were influenced by racist white ethnocentrsim. In reality for black artist during the 20's I believe mainstream america at the time was a very challenging place for a non-white to be accepted. Even presently, dominant status quo of white society still provides a challenge for non-whites in many aspects economically and socially, as is commonly seen throughout the United States despite the racial and ethnic demograhic changes taking place. For example, there are very few racially/ethnically integrated communities existing as opposed to seeing the common racially/ethnically separated communities, proving intergration is a long way off. I dont believe a large mainstream utopian society is possible in my lifetime, but the idea is nice.