Master of Arts (M.A.)
In this thesis, I analyze how The Brownies' Book projected the ideals of the New Negro Movement by positioning Black children as crucial to the period's creation of a new Negro identity. My analysis begins by exploring various examples of racist imagery of the period and how the periodical subverted those negative representations of Black children and Black life. In my examination of The Brownies' Book's representation of Blackness, I discuss the minstrel tradition and the racist popular cultural imagery of the 1920s. By analyzing the positive representations of Blackness within The Brownies' Book, my study shows how the editors of the periodical asserted the humanity of Black children and promoted racial pride. The second part of my study offers examination of how the periodical's authors utilized fairytales to appeal to a common trope in the construction of American childhood to further the mission of prominent race leaders. Lastly, part three offers analysis of the periodical as a cross-written text, meaning it addresses both child and adult readers. In each of these sections, my project presents The Brownies' Book as an influential work that supported the New Negro Movement's refashioning of the Black racial identity by celebrating Black children during the early twentieth century.
© The Author
Bowins, Felicia, "For Children Of The Sun Who Deserved Better When Pickaninnies Were Not Enough: The Celebration Of Childhood Within The Brownies' Book" (2020). Dissertations, Theses, and Masters Projects. William & Mary. Paper 1593091660.