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Diane Publishing Books
Great Black Way: L.A. in the 1940s and the Lost African-American Renaissance
R.J. Smith (au)
In 1997, R.J. Smith went hunting for a book about the 1940s jazz scene on LA’s Central Ave. What he found was a forgotten place and time in African American and California history. This book unearths that little known, now vanished civilization and changes how we understand history. In the 1940s, when FDR integrated the defense industry, he helped trigger a massive wave of black migration that gathered along L.A.’s Central Ave. -- and turbulent change in the arts, culture, and politics. This gave birth to rhythm and blues, the black detective novel, black comics who addressed audiences with socially tinged humor, and the start of the civil rights movement through building mass movements. “Brings the 1940s Central Ave. scene back to life.” Photos.
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