Discussion 1: Washington & DuBois

Topics: Black people, W. E. B. Du Bois, African American Pages: 3 (1021 words) Published: November 3, 2013
We will begin our discussion concerning race relations during the historical period now called Reconstruction – this is the time period after the Civil War. As African Americans tried to combat racism and avoid racial conflict, they clashed over strategies of accommodation and resistance. The Southern educator, author and civil rights leader, Booker T. Washington urged blacks to be industrious, to learn manual skills, to work their way up economically, and to win the respect of whites. When blacks proved their economic value, Washington explained, racism would decline. He contended that blacks and whites could coexist in harmony with separate social lives, but remain united in efforts toward economic progress. Northern intellectual W.E.B. Du Bois challenged Washington’s theory. After having read selected passages from Washington’s Up from Slavery and DuBois’ Souls of Black Folk, please write an essay addressing the following questions. In your own words, what was Washington’s theory to advance African Americans after slavery? Please define his theory and then use passages from his text to illustrate these points. Now that you’ve defined his theory, explain what you make of it? Do you agree/disagree? Is it a good theory or not? Please explain why or why not. What does DuBois have to say about Washington’s policy? Explain DuBois’ reaction and then find passages from his text that illustrate these points. Please complete your essay by explaining who you believe had a better proposal for existence - you must explain why? I ask that you write this essay BEFORE you read what other students points. It is human nature to be easily influenced by others’ arguments and ideas. Points will be awarded to those who have new and original points to add. Those essays that mimic what other students have already posted will not earn any...
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