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Blackface NationRace, Reform, and Identity in American Popular Music, 1812-1925$
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Brian Roberts

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226451503

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226451787.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

The Middle-Class Moment

The Middle-Class Moment

(p.187) 7 The Middle-Class Moment
Blackface Nation

Brian Roberts

University of Chicago Press

This chapter focuses on the Hutchinson Family singers’ connections to communal traditions which became the foundation of their critical stance toward the market economy: including their support for communistic utopian communities, abolition and other reform movements. It argues that their public support of these movements in their song was key to their popularity with middle-class Americans. They embraced abolition and other reforms in their music and became more popular, while the world-famous Jenny Lind, darling of the American middle class, distanced herself from the movement to avoid controversy: a decision which marked the beginning of the decline of her singing career.

Keywords:   Hutchinson Family Singers, middle class culture, abolitionism, communism, shakers, Brook Farm, Native Americans, Jenny Lind, gender ideology

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