From 1923 until 1931, Gwendolyn Bennett founded a support club that provided a friendly, welcoming environment for Harlem's young authors, as well as prolonged connection with their peers. The club was located at 131 West 135th Street.
Gwendolyn Bennett was born on August 4, 1893 in New York City. She was the daughter of Anna Jackson and William Henry Bennett. Her father was an attorney who had some political connections due to being the nephew of New York Governor Woodrow Wilson. Her mother was from a wealthy family who owned a textile business.
She showed an interest in writing at a very early age and her parents encouraged this by paying for her to take lessons from a private tutor. In 1907, she published her first book titled A Little Day Dreamy which was based on poems that she had written earlier. This was followed by several more books including The Land of the Sky (1911), The Song of the Lark (1913), and Harlem Shadows (1931). These were published by Harper & Brothers and attracted much attention from readers and critics alike. In addition, they made Gwendolyn Bennett known as one of the leading poets of the Harlem Renaissance.
Gwendolyn Bennett (born July 8, 1902 in Giddings, Texas, U.S.—died May 30, 1981 in Reading, Pa.) was a Harlem Renaissance poet, essayist, short-story writer, and artist. Meet the exceptional ladies who dared to raise the subject of gender equality and other concerns.
She is best known for her poetry collection The Bean Tree (1929), which includes poems about her childhood in Texas, as well as poems that deal with issues such as racism, sexism, and poverty. In addition to writing poetry, Bennett created illustrations and designed book covers. She also worked as an editor and teacher during this time.
After graduating from high school, Bennett moved to New York City where she became involved with the Harlem Renaissance movement. She joined other artists and writers in discussions on topics such as black nationalism, feminism, and socialism. Bennett also participated in many exhibitions, including ones held by the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Art Students League, and others.
In addition to writing poetry and essays, Bennett created more than 100 drawings and paintings. Many of these images depict African Americans and reflect the work, culture, and people of her time. Others show animals, flowers, or objects in abstract ways. Still others use color alone to make statements about society's divisions based on race, class, and gender.
Bennett died in 1981 at the age of 78 after suffering for several years from breast cancer.
By the 1920s, Harlem had become the world's most famous African American enclave. Harlem's abundance of black men and women created a bustling environment. The accumulation of books, journals, and ideas generated a fascination with African music, pictures, and history. Black entrepreneurs opened stores, restaurants, and hotels to attract tourists from around the world.
The Harlem Renaissance was an explosion of artistic creativity that occurred in Harlem between about 1915 and 1930. It was initiated by a group of white poets and artists who wanted to escape from their daily routine and be inspired by the growing number of blacks in New York City. The most important event of this era was the creation of many new art forms by blacks, such as jazz and ballet. This period also saw the publication of many novels, essays, and poems written by blacks about their experiences as slaves or free people of color.
Harlem was then becoming an independent city within the state of New York, with its own government, laws, and police force. There were no racial restrictions on voting in federal elections, but only whites could serve on juries. Blacks could not use public facilities such as libraries or rest rooms unless they paid extra fees. Despite these limitations, many successful black businessmen began to open shops, restaurants, and hotels in Harlem. Tourists came from all over the world to see the "Negro Village."