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Claude McKay (1889 – 1948). Home to Harlem First edition, 1928Avon edition, 1951.

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Presentation on theme: "Claude McKay (1889 – 1948). Home to Harlem First edition, 1928Avon edition, 1951."— Presentation transcript:

1 Claude McKay (1889 – 1948)

2 Home to Harlem First edition, 1928Avon edition, 1951

3 ‘Double Consciousness’ “It is a peculiar sensation, this double- consciousness, this sense of always looking at one’s self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity.” -W.E.B. DuBois, The Souls of Black Folk (1903)

4 Jake vs. Ray “Youse awful queer, chappie,” Jake commented. “Why, don’t you ever feel those sensations that just turn you back in on yourself and make you isolated and helpless?” “Wha’d y’u mean?” “I mean if sometimes you don’t feel as I felt last night?” “Lawdy no. Young and pretty is all I feel.” -Home To Harlem, ch. XIII

5 The ‘New Negro’ “In the last decade something beyond the watch and guard of statistics has happened in the life of the American Negro... The pulse of the Negro world has begun to beat in Harlem.” -Alain Locke, “Enter the New Negro” (1925)

6 “We ought to get something new, we Negroes. But we get our education like— like our houses. When the whites move out, we move in and take possession of the old dead stuff. Dead stuff that this age has no use for... You and I were born in the midst of the illness of this age and have lived through its agony…” -HtH, ch. XVI

7 “The Ascent of Ethiopia” – Lois Mailou Jones (1932)

8 Primitivism and Harlem “...our age is the age of Negro art. The slogan of the aesthetic art world is ‘Return to the Primitive.’ The Futurists and Impressionists are agreed in turning everything upside down in an attempt to achieve the wisdom of the primitive Negro.” —Claude McKay, The Negroes in America (1923) “They were wearied of the pleasures of the big white world, wanted something new—the primitive joy of Harlem.” —Home to Harlem, Ch. XIII

9 Sheba Palace “It was a scene of blazing color. Soft, barbaric, burning, savage, clashing, planless colors—all rioting together in wonderful harmony. There is no human sight so rich as an assembly of Negroes ranging from lacquer black through brown to cream, decked out in their ceremonial finery.” - HtH, ch. XXI

10 “Night Life” – Archibald Motley (1943)


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