Busboys and Poets Books presents Author Farah Griffin
5th & K | Cullen Room | October 21,2013 | 6:30PM-8PM
"Harlem Nocturne: Women Artists and Progressive Politics During World War II"

For many, the 1940s evoke the “Greatest Generation,” the men and women of the Second World War who fought to preserve democracy in Europe and establish peace in a war-torn world. But too often, we overlook the struggle and innovation that was taking place at home, artistically and politically, among African Americans and women during this time.

In HARLEM NOCTURNE: Women Artists and Progressive Politics During World War II (Basic Civitas; September 10, 2013),eminent scholar Farah Jasmine Griffin tells the stories of three black female artists who won fame and fought for change in a period of unprecedented political and artistic openness –novelist Ann Petry, choreographer and dancer Pearl Primus, and composer and pianist Mary Lou Williams.

Harlem in the 1940s was a vibrant and glamorous neighborhood brimming with creativity and activism. Rife with peer collaboration, the neighborhood was fueled by the influx of millions of black Southerners who came north during the Second Great Migration. They served as both the subject and audience for groundbreaking political and artistic expression of all types. Petry, Primus, and Williams, in particular, were artists who embodied Harlem’s spirit of creative work with a social conscience. Griffin writes about these three women as individuals and as representatives of a singular time and place.

Books for this event will be available for purchase at Busboys and Poets Books located inside the restaurant.

Co-sponsored by Georgetown University's African-American Studies Department

Free and open to all!    

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