Book Review: Harlem Stomp

I signed up for the February Classics Circuit featuring the Harlem Renaissance. I realized I didn’t know a lot about the subject, but figured this was a good reason to educate myself. One of the books recommended was this book.

Harlem Stomp: A Cultural History Of The Harlem Renaissance

by Laban Carrickn Hill

Little, Brown & Company, 2003

My Rating: A

Summary from the Book Jacket: The Harlem Renaissance was one of the most exciting and important periods (late 1910’s to 1930’s) in American cultural history. Determined to make a new start for themselves at the dawn of the twentieth century, many African Americans joined the “Great Migration” and headed to the North. For those who landed in the hotbed of Harlem, New York, it was a time of intellectual, artistic, literary, and of polictical¬†blossoming. Influential African-American artists and activists took center stage as their burgeoning creativity captured the attention of the world.

My evaluation: According to the Library Journal, this book is a Young Adult and is suitable for Grade 7 and up. Well, I’m way past the 7th grade but the book was perfect for me. It was jammed full of short historical clips, loads of pictures, drawings, paintings, posters, and so forth. It was a pleasant way to learn the history of this time period.

Harlem Stomp was also about more than just history. It featured the authors, artists, intellectuals, and activists that were an important part of this era. And, the author also covered some of the issues of the time. It never felt like a young adult book. It was very sophisticated.

For students who want to study further, there is an excellent bibliography at the end. It also has a good index. I’m grateful to Harlem Stomp for helping me understand this important part of our cultural history.

Source: I borrowed this book from the public library. It s also available at Amazon.

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6 Responses to Book Review: Harlem Stomp

  1. I’ve heard elsewhere that this book is just wonderful. I love books that are “jammed full of short historical clips, loads of pictures, drawings, paintings, posters, and so forth.” I hope I can find this one!

  2. Beth F says:

    Oh wow! This sounds fabulous and perfect for me! When I’m done, I could pass it along to my nephews.

  3. Kathy says:

    I’m way past the 7th grade too, but I bet I would love this book as well! Thanks for the great review!

  4. Stacy says:

    I don’t know much about this movement and this book sounds great. I like the sound of all pictures, posters, etc.

  5. My TBR list grows everytime I visit! Visiting the YA section is a great idea for catching up on an era I too know little about.

  6. Staci says:

    Sounds like this one has a lot of great information in it!!!

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