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Essay on W.E.B Du Bois

This essay will be about W.EB. Du Bois, the essay will cover various aspects of his life, that is his origins, education and later engagements in life. His full name was William Edward Burghardt Du Bois and he was born in the year 1868 in Green Barington, Massachusetts. He grew up to later become a leading African-American activist, writer and sociologist in addition he was also a journalist, historian, critic among other engagements all through his life. This Essay will give a brief biography of W.EB. Du Bois and his major contributions to different aspect of America, from literature, civil rights among others.

 

Du Bois was among the main driving forces in the African-American political and social causes during the pre-civil rights era. As a leader he is remembered for the conflict he had with Booker T. Washington on what was the role of African-Americans in the American society. Du Bois wrote great works across a number of genres, in addition he was a pioneer in studying black history .

 

His Origins

In the year 1868 WEB Du Bois was born as a free man in Great Barington, Massachusetts. His father was Alfred Du Bois and his mother, Mary Du Bois. His family had played a great role in the American revolution through his great grand father, Tom Burghardt who by volunteering for the war won his freedom. From an early age, Du Bois knew about his African heritage and this would go on to drive his future endeavors, where he borne within him the desire to change the lives of African-Americans in the United States and the world over.

 

Education

Du Bois was good in class and excelled in his studies, performing better than most of his white peers he graduated from high school at the age of sixteen, after which despite harboring dreams to go to Harvard he went to Fisk university courtesy of a scholarship. It was here that he got first hand experience with Southern racism which during this time was ruled by the Jim Crow laws.

 

Later he would go on to Harvard University in the years between 1888 to 1895, he paid for his own education with the help of loans from friends, upon his graduation with a second degree cum laude in History he was awarded a graduate school scholarship to study sociology at Harvard.

 

In the year 1892, he got a fellowship to attend the University of Berlin where he did most of his graduate work. Here he studied with some of Germany's prominent social scientists. He came back from Europe to earn a Ph. D at Harvard in the year 1895 becoming the first African-American to achieve such a feat.

 

Career and Work

Upon his graduation Du Bois had a number of job offers but chose to go Ohio's Wilberforce school, where he taught Latin, Greek and German from Wilberforce he went to the University of Pennsylvania where he worked as an assistant sociologist doing research on city's African -Americans, this resulted in his landmark study titled “ The Philadelphia Negro” .

 

In 1899 he got a teaching job at the Atlanta University where he published “The Philadelphia Negro”, the book helped in debunking the stereotypes that existed about African-Americans through the use of scientific evidence, this would later shape the approach he took to help end segregation, through the study he proposed the need for America to have racial integration.

 

Activism and Social Causes

In 1900 Du Bois was among the attendants of the First Pan-African Conference that was held between July 23 to 25 in London. In the conference Du Bois helped in drafting the “Address to the Nations of the World” which was a letter targeting European and other global leaders urging them to curb racism and grant countries under colonialism self rule.

 

Alongside Booker T. Washington, Du Bois was among the main spokespersons of African-Americans. Booker T. Washington by this time was a director at the Tuskegee Institute. He made the Atlanta Compromise with Southern white leaders in 1895, in this agreement it was agreed that African -Americans living in southern lands would submit to segregation and discrimination, and in return the Southern governments would grant them basic education, justice and economic opportunities.

To counter the Atlanta compromise Du Bois alongside other African American leaders met in Canada, near the Niagara falls where they formed the Niagara Movement, which was out to oppose the Atlanta compromise. The Niagara declaration had principles that were in opposition to the Atlanta compromise, Du Bois hoped that this principles would reach other African -Americans but faced opposition from most of the black publications which were sympathetic to Booker T. Washington. To counter this Du Bois launched a new weekly magazine “Moon Illustrated Weekly” that he used to opposed Washington's ideas.

 

The Niagara movement would later result in the creation of the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People). As in the year 1910, the NAACP was formed out of the National Negro Committee that was dedicated to campaigning for equal educational opportunities, voting and civil rights for all. The NAACP was made up of both whites and blacks, where most of the whites served as the organization's executive officers.

 

Du Bois worked as the NAACP magazine “The Crisis “ editor for more than 24 years from the year 1910. Through his advocacy he was seen as a key black protest leader as his views were opposite of Washington's who called for blacks to accept the status quo. Du Bois was for making direct assault on the economic, social and legal systems, which he viewed to have developed out of exploitation of the powerless within the African- American community. At the NAACP Du Bois championed against discrimination of the blacks in terms of economic opportunities, lynching and general discrimination. He would report on different matters that affected African -Americans at large and was key proponent of emigration of African-Americans from the South which was full of discrimination to the industrial North that offered more opportunities to blacks.

 

Major Published Works

Du Bois was an academic and a literary great who published many influential works during his life. He wrote on subjects such as history, sociology, biography, fiction among others. Among his most influential works include The Souls of Black Folk, which was a collection of essays covering the conditions of African- Americans in the United States. This work contained a critic of Booker T. Washington.

 

Other works he wrote include “ The Philadelphia Negro” in 1899, which was a work on sociology; the “ Darkwater: Voices From Within the Veil” which was an autobiography and a book to show the suffering endured by African -Americans; in terms of history he wrote the “The Gift of Black Folk “ in the year 1924, in which he demonstrated the contribution of blacks to major civilizations; in the Black Reconstruction that was published in the year 1935 he covered the role of blacks in the reconstruction.

 

Later Life

Du Bois would travel around the world to places such as China, Russia, Japan and other parts of Europe. During the 1950s, Du Bois was targeted by the McCarthyism campaign which targeted communists and having socialist leanings he was targeted. Following a trial in 1951 due to his involvement with the Peace Information Centre, he received acquittal but his passport was confiscated for over 8 years. Du Bois would later join the communist party of the United States in 1961, he traveled to Ghana in the same year living there until his death in 1963 at the age of 95 years, he was buried near his home in Accra in what is now a memorial centre.

 

Conclusion

The above essay has focused on the life of W.EB. DU BOIS where various aspects of his life have been shown from his origin, his education where he went on to become the first African American to graduate with a Ph. D at Harvard .Du Bois would come to play a great role in the civil rights movements especially on economic and social integration of African Americans.

Du Bois fought for the plight of the oppressed all through his life, joining different causes and organization that aimed to fight for civil rights.

This essay will be about W.EB. Du Bois, the essay will cover various aspects of his life, that is his origins, education and later engagements in life. His full name was William Edward Burghardt Du Bois and he was born in the year 1868 in Green Barington, Massachusetts. He grew up to later become a leading African-American activist, writer and sociologist in addition he was also a journalist, historian, critic among other engagements all through his life. This Essay will give a brief biography of W.EB. Du Bois and his major contributions to different aspect of America, from literature, civil rights among others.

Du Bois was among the main driving forces in the African-American political and social causes during the pre-civil rights era. As a leader he is remembered for the conflict he had with Booker T. Washington on what was the role of African-Americans in the American society. Du Bois wrote great works across a number of genres, in addition he was a pioneer in studying black history .

His Origins

In the year 1868 WEB Du Bois was born as a free man in Great Barington, Massachusetts. His father was Alfred Du Bois and his mother, Mary Du Bois. His family had played a great role in the American revolution through his great grand father, Tom Burghardt who by volunteering for the war won his freedom. From an early age, Du Bois knew about his African heritage and this would go on to drive his future endeavors, where he borne within him the desire to change the lives of African-Americans in the United States and the world over.

Education

Du Bois was good in class and excelled in his studies, performing better than most of his white peers he graduated from high school at the age of sixteen, after which despite harboring dreams to go to Harvard he went to Fisk university courtesy of a scholarship. It was here that he got first hand experience with Southern racism which during this time was ruled by the Jim Crow laws.

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