The Harlem Renaissance

1009 Words5 Pages
After years of suffering from persecution, discrimination, and institutionalized racism due to Jim Crow laws, black people all around America engaged in a social and cultural movement entitled ‘The Harlem Renaissance.’ Author Zora Neale Hurston wrote the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, about the Harlem Renaissance while promoting feminist ideas. Although the Harlem Renaissance was a social and cultural movement, the Harlem Renaissance still promoted traditional gender roles for women, which is reflected by Nanny’s wishes for Janie and departs with Janie’s want of freedom. In the Harlem Renaissance, women were not as respected as men, especially in the arts. Looking in retrospect, many critics highly value women of color’s writing during the Harlem Renaissance because most modern critics are not phased by race or sex. Cheryl A. Wall, for example, collected important contributions, made by women, in her book, Women of the Harlem Renaissance. She focuses her book on the journey of black women during the Harlem Renaissance because their journey “reflect[s] the sense of possibility, disappointment, and perseverance... [because] these writers had to invent themselves at a time when the term ‘black,’ ‘women,’ and ‘artist’ were never complementary” (Wall). Thus, modern historians are able to comprehend the feelings of limitation that these writers felt. It was harder for women to succeed in the art field, due to societal roles and expectations. Black women that pursued writing
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