The Great Depression
Roll of Thunder took place during the Great Depression. The Great Depression was the longest lasting economic decline in the western industrial area. There was a tremendous amount of unemployment and there was only 25 percent of the working amount that there should have been. It had extreme effects on the rich and the poor. The stock market had crashed and the cities were hit hard, and when it came to the cities that were dependant of industrial activities, things were way worse. Industries such as mining and logging were suffering the most at the time along with farming. Farming communities suffered as crop prices fell 60 percent along with many other activities because of prices falling.
Dorothea Lange's Migrant Mother
Admonishment of slavery
Ex-slave Gordon displaying whipping scars during a medical examination in 1863 "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction." -The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America
Slavery is the practice or system of owning slaves. Slaves are people who are the legal property of another and is forced to obey them. The end of this was a great time for black people. Not as much thought to the whites, but in the end, black people were still treated as less then white people. “She spoke on the cruelty of it; of the rich economic cycle it generated as slaves produced the raw products for the factories of the North and Europe; how the country profited and grew from the free labor of a people still not free." Page 383. Slavery was a very bad thing, and when Abraham Lincoln made slavery illegal, he hoped for everyone to look at each other as equals. He never expected or wanted the black peoples to still be looked down apon.
Lynching is the act of killing someone without fair trial. Usually a mob is formed to make this happen and when the person is killed, they are usually killed by being hung by a noose. In Roll of Thunder Hear my Cry, lynching was a large part of the book. The main characters were afraid of it the most and had examples of lynching in the book. An example would be when a boy got lynched for flirting with Sally Ann. “John Henry, he took her on home then headed back for his own place, but evidently them men caught up with him and Beacon again and starts rammin’ the back of his car" was part of the story on page 99. Eventually they got the man, which was John Henry, and lynched him for supposedly 'flirting' with a white girl.