Jitterbugs, Swing Kids, and Lindy Hoppers

Primary Source Set

Swing dancing refers to a group of social dances developed in the 1920s and ’30s and influenced by African American communities as well as the jazz and blues movements. Swing dancing is comprised of various forms of dances that include the Balboa, Collegiate Shag, Lindy Hop and Lindy Charleston. These dances were particularly popular with youth groups who were oftentimes referred to as jitterbugs, Swing Kids, and Lindy Hoppers. During the Great Depression and World War II, swing dancing provided a recreational outlet and morale booster in large social gatherings, exclusive clubs, juke joints and competitive dance events.

Additional resources for research

  1. Photographs of Jitterbug dancing, Digital Public Library of America.
  2. Between the Wars: The Swing Era, George Mason University.
  3. Archives of Early Lindy Hop, Savoy Style.

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