Josephine Baker Research Paper

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Born as Freda Josephine McDonald on June 3, 1906, in Saint Louis. Her mother had dreams of becoming a music-hall dancer, but gave them up to become a mother and washerwoman and her father abandoned them when she was an infant. Most of her time as a youth was spent in poverty. To help support her family, she started cleaning houses and babysitting at the age of eight often being mistreated. At the age of 13 she ran away from home, found work as a waitress at a club where she met her first husband Willie Wells, who she divorced only weeks later. It was around this time that Josephine first took up dancing, honing her skills, both in clubs and in street performances, by 1919 she was touring the United States with the Jones Family Band and the Dixie Steppers performing comedic skits. By 1921 she married her second husband, Willie Baker whose name she obtained even after they divorced years later.

In 1925, France’s had an obsession with American jazz and all things …show more content…

She was so moved by her reception that she wept before her audience. The show was a huge success and marked Baker’s comeback to the stage. In April 1975,to celebrate 50 years since her debut Josephine Baker performed at the Bobino Theater in Paris, in the first of a series of performances celebrating the anniversary. Numerous celebrities were in attendance, including Sophia Loren and Princess Grace of Monaco, who had been a dear friend to Baker for years. Just days later, on April 12, 1975, Baker died in her sleep of a cerebral hemorrhage at the age of 69. The day of her funeral, more than 20,000 people lined the streets of Paris to witness the procession, and the French government honored her with a 21-gun salute, making Baker the first American woman in history to be buried in France with military

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