Ma Rainey Themes
Little Words, Big Ideas
Old-school blues was a staple in the southern black community, and Ma Rainey was one of the greats. Though her music eventually had widespread appeal, it was the way in which she spoke to and sang...
These folks aren't exactly staying at the Ritz when they roll into town. The audience members in "Ma Rainey" hail from farms, lumber camps, and river settlements—not swanky high rises or suburban...
Visions of the South
"Ma Rainey" gives us a good cross-section of the South and the Mississippi river valley. What vision do we get in the poem? One of swampy river towns, where poverty is rampant and folks everywhere...
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