Directed by Christopher R. Watson. She was later awarded the Croix de Guerre and the Legion of Honour with the rosette of the Resistance. But the Rainbow Tribe was not just a family; it was a social movement with Baker at its helm as the charismatic leader and matriarch. The Rainbow Tribe was no different from any other family. Beginning in 1953, almost 30 … An activist in the Civil Rights Movement, she adopted a … Baker passed away on … In Josephine Baker and the Rainbow Tribe, Matthew Pratt Guterl brings out a little known side of the celebrated personality, showing how her ambitions of later years were even more daring and subversive than the youthful exploits that made her the first African American superstar. Josephine Baker’s Rainbow Tribe: Before Madonna and Angelina Jolie, the expat dancer adopted 12 children from around the globe. During the German occupation of France, Josephine Baker—who had become a French citizen in 1937—worked with the Red Cross and the Resistance, and, as a member of the Free French forces, she entertained. In Josephine Baker and the Rainbow Tribe, Matthew Pratt Guterl brings out a little known side of the celebrated personality, showing how her ambitions of later years were even more daring and subversive than the youthful exploits that made her the first African American superstar. Her performing days numbered, Josephine Baker did something outrageous: she transformed her chateau into a theme park whose main attraction was her Rainbow Tribe -- 12 children from around the globe, adopted as the family of the future. At right is husband Jo Bouillon. Josephine Baker with her Rainbow Tribe, c. 1957 In The Gay & Lesbian Theatrical Legacy, Billy J. Harbin writes, “Jean-Claude states that Josephine believed men were of … The show was sold out and she received a standing ovation. Josephine Baker died in Paris on April 12, 1975 soon after a party given in her honor. Baker remained on stage late into her life and in 1975 she performed for the last time.
A rag-tag group of children at a sleep away camp help their counselor overcome a personal crisis. Josephine Baker in 1959 with some of the 11 children of different races she adopted.
After the war she began adopting orphans from around the world whom she called her “Rainbow Tribe.” In August 1963 Baker was one of only two women to speak at the March on Washington. With David James Elliott, Grayson Russell, Ed Quinn, Julie Ann Emery. Dancer and entertainer known as "Black Pearl" and "Creole Goddess" and widely recognized by her Danse banane costume.
Guterl compares Baker's utopia with those of the cult leader Jim Jones, the philanthropists Helen Doss and Carl Doss, and the 1938 Nobel laureate Pearl S. Buck. She called them her rainbow tribe. She called her family “the rainbow tribe” and took her children on the road in an effort to show that racial and cultural harmony could exist.