Blues Empress in Black Chattanooga Bessie Smith and the Emerging Urban South
List price: $28.00
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As one of the first African American vocalists to be recorded, Bessie Smith is a prominent figure in American popular culture and African American history. Michelle R. Scott uses Smith's life as a lens to investigate broad issues in history, including industrialization, Southern rural to urban migration, black community development in the post-emancipation era, and black working-class gender conventions. Arguing that the rise of blues culture and the success of female blues artists like Bessie Smith are connected to the rapid migration and industrialization in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Scott focuses her analysis on Chattanooga, Tennessee, the large industrial and transportation center where Smith was born. Scott explores how the expansion of the Southern railroads and the development of iron foundries, steel mills, and sawmills created vast employment opportunities in the postbellum era, contributing to Chattanooga's African American communityand an emergent blues culture.
List price: $28.00
Copyright year: 2008
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
Publication date: 8/4/2008
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
|Introduction: Uncovering the Life of a Blues Woman|
|Beyond the Contraband Camps: Black Chattanooga from the Civil War to 1880|
|"The Freest Town on the Map": Black Migration to New South Chattanooga|
|The Empress's Playground: Bessie Smith and Black Childhood in the Urban South|
|Life on "Big Ninth" Street: The Emerging Blues Culture in Chattanooga|
|An Empress in Vaudeville: Bessie Smith on the Theater Circuit|
|Epilogue: A Blues Woman's Legacy|