The Natchez fire: a profile of African American remembrance in a small Mississippi town Public Deposited

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Last Modified
  • March 21, 2019
  • Joos, Vincent
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of American Studies, Folklore Program
  • In April 1940, two hundred and nine people died in a dance hall fire in Natchez, Mississippi. All the victims were African Americans. This event is central in the collective memory of Natchez black residents. This ethnographic work explores the shapes memory takes on when the Natchez Fire is invoked and follows the geographical and historical paths associated with the tragedy. African American counter-memory is a constant reconstruction of space and place, which are used as means of contestation. Through the narratives pertaining to the tragedy, questions of race, gender and power are woven to reconstructions of the past. These reconstructions are apprehended through a folkloric lens: songs, material artifacts and individual narratives enable me to ponder on the impact of the Natchez Fire.
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  • In Copyright
  • "... in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in the Folklore Program."
  • Sawin, Patricia
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
  • Open access

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