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The Flood Year 1927A Cultural History$
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Susan Scott Parrish

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691168838

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691168838.001.0001

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Conclusion: Noah’s Kin

Conclusion: Noah’s Kin

(p.277) Conclusion: Noah’s Kin
The Flood Year 1927

Susan Scott Parrish

Princeton University Press

This chapter considers the question of what made the recent disaster called Katrina in 2005, and its mediation, distinct from its 1927 forerunner. It argues that what was most different about the two events is that artists and commentators in 2005 could be more openly critical of the racial and class dimensions of their disaster before a multiracial mass audience. The chapter also considers a poem that appeared in print in April 1927, which must have seemed a providential coincidence to many readers. The poem, called “Noah Built the Ark,” moves from the halcyon days in Eden to the point at which “God got sorry that he ever made man.” Like other works of the Harlem Renaissance, the poem called upon the currency of folk form to create a public awareness of traditions within African American culture.

Keywords:   Hurricane Katrina, Great Mississippi Flood, river flood, 2005, Noah's Ark, African American culture, poem, poetry

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