Home History Online Exhibits Wake-Up, BLACK THEATER


Theater can both reflect racism against African Americans and offer a vehicle for activists to fight against discrimination. In this way, theater tells the story of the struggle for racial justice from the late 1800s through the twentieth century.

Like black activists elsewhere, theater artists pursue a range of strategies, from the politics of respectability to militant self-defense. The general trend in black theater has been away from the struggle for inclusion in white-dominated institutions and toward the establishment of cultural autonomy. Each document featured here shows a piece of this evolution.

Lincoln University student and HSP intern Tauheed J. Alim created this exhibit with funding from the Arts Intern program at the Studio Institute. Arts Intern seeks to increase diversity in museums and cultural institutions.

Case 1: The "Ethiopian Theatre"

Case 2: The "Ethiopian Theatre" (Continued)

Case 3: The New Negro Movement

Case 4: Black Theater Matters