TITLE

The Significance of the Blues as a Cultural Expression in Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

AUTHOR(S)
Beşe, Ahmet
PUB. DATE
June 2011
SOURCE
Journal of Graduate School of Social Sciences;Jun2011, Vol. 15 Issue 1, p227
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
August Wilson's first Broadway play, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom brings several issues on stage that reflects his whole contour of theatre such as the blues, and his interest in both factual and fictional history. Ma Rainey (1886-1939), 'Mother of Blues' was the acknowledged blues singer in African American folk culture. It is an integral part of Ma Rainey's Black Bottom in which the blues is defined as 'a cultural expression and an understanding of life' for African American community throughout their painful history in the U.S. The blues primarily refers to African American culture, and it reminds the characters of their past history; through the music the characters tell their stories, and through this try to understand life itself, as the title character of the play defines that the blues is 'life's way of talking.' The intention of this article is to analyze the relations of the blues music and its significance as a cultural expression on characters as both musicians and African Americans in the play. The blues reflects the emotional content (sorrows, joys, plights and affairs, etc.) of African Americans, their experiences, their traditions and culture, at large.
ACCESSION #
60102355

 

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