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Art for EqualityThe NAACPs Cultural Campaign for Civil Rights$
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Jenny Woodley

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813145167

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813145167.001.0001

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“A union of art and propaganda”

“A union of art and propaganda”

(p.97) 4 “A union of art and propaganda”
Art for Equality

Jenny Woodley

University Press of Kentucky

This chapter explores the ways the NAACP used the arts in its fight against lynching. The three examples discussed are: antilynching plays written by black women; the Writers’ League Against Lynching, formed in the 1930s to provide information to writers about mob violence; and An Art Commentary on Lynching, an art exhibition that executive secretary Walter White organized to elicit support for an antilynching bill. The NAACP tried to change white attitudes toward lynching by using culture, a strategy that White called a “union of art and propaganda.” Equally significant was the way African Americans used art and literature to create an alternative record of lynching, one that challenged white America's justification for and celebration of mob violence.

Keywords:   Lynching, Walter White, antilynching plays, Writers’ League Against Lynching, Art exhibition

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