Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?
“Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” gave voice to the millions of Americans struggling to get by during the Depression. Composer Jay Gorney, who immigrated from Białystok (modern-day Poland), based the song on a Russian-Jewish lullaby; lyricist E. Y. Harburg added refrains he heard on street corners to authentically reflect the experiences of unemployed people. “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” captured the grief, frustration, and anger of so many people who felt abandoned by their country.
The Great Depression in America: A Cultural Encyclopedia. Vol. 1 ed. William H. Young and Nancy K. Young – p. 72-73.
Galleries & Exhibits
- 11865-1925: Hunger in the Industrial City
- 21929-1940: America in Crisis and Recovery
- 31945-1965: WWII and the Paradoxes of the Postwar Era
- 41955-1980: The Fight for the Right to Food
- 51975-1996: The Unmaking of the Great Society
- 61997-Present: How It Is — And How It Should Be