12-11-2017  2:45 pm      •     
MLK Breakfast
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NEWS BRIEFS

Joint Office of Homeless Services Announces Severe Weather Strategy

Those seeking shelter should call 211 or visit 211.org. Neighbors needed to volunteer, donate cold-weather apparel ...

Q&A with Facebook's Global Director of Diversity Maxine Williams

A conversation on diversity and the tech industry ...

City Announces Laura John as Tribal Liason

Laura John brings an extensive background in tribal advocacy and community engagement to the city of Portland ...

Humboldt Sewer Repair Project Update: Dec. 4

Environmental Services continues to repair more than 3 miles of public sewer pipes ...

'Santaland' on Display at Oregon Historical Society

New exhibit features Santa’s throne, Rudolph, and elves from original Meier and Frank’s Santaland ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Payday Lenders Continue Attack on Consumer Protections

Charlene Crowell of the Center for Responsible Lending writes that two bills that favor predatory lenders has received bipartisan...

Hundreds Rallied for Meek Mill, but What About the Rest?

Lynette Monroe, a guest columnist for the NNPA Newswire, talks about Meek Mill, the shady judge that locked him up and mass...

Top 10 Holiday Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pet

Dr. Jasmine Streeter explains why pampering pets with holiday treats can be dangerous (and pricey) ...

Why We Need More Black Men in Early Childhood Education

Royston Maxwell Lyttle discusses the importance of Black male teachers in early childhood education for the NNPA ESSA Media Campaign ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

Harlem Street Portraits by Harvey Stein
Kam Williams Special To The Skanner News

 

“With a population of nearly half a million people, Harlem is America’s most celebrated African-American neighborhood. Its rich past and historical importance have made a unique contribution to our national popular culture… Photographer Harvey Stein documents the humanity and spirit of the people of Harlem in 166 beautiful photographs taken over 22 years…. The images are mostly close-up portraits that reveal the friendliness and warmth of this city’s inhabitants... What may at first appear to be a casual encounter becomes a personal, intimate record, a meaningful collaboration between photographer and subject. Stein’s photographs capture and celebrate the Harlem spirit.”  -- Excerpted from book jacket

Harlem has been a predominantly African-American neighborhood since the dawn of the 20th Century, when the mass migration by descendants of slaves from the rural South flooded many a metropolis above the Mason-Dixon Line. By the Twenties, this section of Manhattan had blossomed into an artistic mecca and home to many black intellectuals, writers, painters, musicians and dancers.

Spanning that decade, the Harlem Renaissance marked a period of explosive creativity aborted only by the onset of the Great Depression. Nevertheless, in the wake of World War II, the region was resurrected as a hub of cultural, religious and commercial activity, and continued to play that pivotal role over the intervening decades

Today, however, Harlem is at risk of losing its identity because of the influx of whites as a consequence of the gentrification which has accompanied skyrocketing real estate prices. For this reason, Harvey Stein’s “Harlem Street Portraits” couldn’t be more timely.

The book is basically a collection of striking, black and white photographs which the talented shutterbug took of residents between 1990 and 2012. His impromptu snapshots capture colorful subjects with a tremendous range in terms of fashion tastes, personal interests and even emotions.

From a Masonic lodge member rocking a funky fez, to a flag-waving patriot, to a boy hugging his basketball, to an aspiring ballerina in a tutu, to churchgoers strutting in their Sunday best, this visual history of a rapidly-disappearing demographic weaves a telling tapestry of a once-cohesive community.   

 

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