The Rockpile Historical Context

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Harlem during the Great Depression

The Great Depression was one of the largest tragedies of the twentieth century, and it affected a wide range of people. When the stock market crashed in 1929, the mainly African-American population assumed that this was a white problem, since African Americans in the Harlem ghetto did not typically own stocks. As it turned out, the people of Harlem were the hardest hit in New York. During the Great Depression, many unskilled workers were laid off or had their wages cut. Because the majority of African-American workers were unskilled, they were seriously affected. In addition, before the depression, many African Americans had worked in low paid, working-class positions that white people did not want. Therefore, many African Americans had some degree of job security. As the unemployment rate increased during the 1930s, many of these traditionally African-American positions were given to whites. This was...

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This section contains 692 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Rockpile Study Guide
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The Rockpile from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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