April 11, 2017. “Hard Time Killin’ Floor Blues” and the Great Depression 

April 13, 2017. Atomic Cold War

  • *Class Set List (below)
  • *House Un-American Activities Committee Clips (below)
  • *Bruce, Lenny, Blah Blah Blah and obscenity conviction clips (1961) (below)

Class reminder: We do not have a weekly assignment this week, other than you should be prepared to discuss either Mr. Smith Goes to Washington or The Great Dictator in class on Thursday. Final class research projects are due on Friday, April 14, 2017. You are also responsible for giving final feedback to your peer review partner by Monday. If you would like to meet with me in office hours on Wednesday between 10 AM-12 Noon, please e-mail me.

Blues Set List 

Skip James, “Hard Time Killin’ Floor Blues.” Read the lyrics and think about how this song is representing the Great Depression.

Robert Johnson, “Crossroad Blues”

Howlin’ Wolf “How Many More Years”

Leadbelly, “Goodnight Irene”

Works Progress Administration Multimedia 

http://www.smithsonianchannel.com/shows/soul-of-a-people-writing-americas-story/0/135396 [These film clips are not embeddable, but they are worth checking out].

Directed by Orson Welles (War of the Worlds) the Federal Theatre Project under the WPA staged Shakespeare adaptations with all-black casts.

Archival footage of the Federal Theatre Project in Los Angeles shot by the Federal Government for newsreels

Jesse Owens at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany 

Above is live footage of the race and below are two documentary excerpts about its historical significance.

Lenny Bruce “Blah Blah Blah” routine (NSW warning: language / sexual content) 

House Un-American Activities Committee Multimedia during the Great Depression & Cold War 

Above is a quick overview of the House Un-American Activities Committee History

Above is a talk show interview with John Wayne in the 1970s reflecting back on the Anti-Communist Hollywood Blacklists and his role in American Westerns during the Cold War

Above: Oral history clips taken from actors and screenwriters impacted by the Hollywood blacklist

Above, James Earl Jones performs an excerpt of Civil Rights leader and musical theater/ cinema star Paul Robeson’s House Un-American Activities Committee Interrogation

Baseball in the Great Depression & WWII 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Rhae Lynn Barnes is a member of the Society of Fellows at USC and Assistant Professor of American Cultural History at Princeton (beginning 2018). She earned her Ph.D. at Harvard University and B.A. at U.C. Berkeley. She is the co-founder of U.S. History Scene.