The Souls Of Black Folk


"The history of the American Negro is the history of the strife-
This longing to attain self conscious manhood, to merge his
double self into a better and truer self. In this merging he
wishes neither of the older selves to be lost. He would not
africanize America, for America has much to teach the world
of Africa. He would not bleach his Negro soul in a flood of
white Americanism, for he knows that Negro blood has a
message for the world. He simply wishes to make it possible
for a man to be both Negro and an American, without being
cursed and spit upon by his fellows, without having the
doors of Opportunity closed roughly in his face" (5).


Along with Booker T. ...

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the race by knowing the soul of one of its members."
In effect, Du Bois seeks to expose his own soul through his tribulations as a black American. But he speaks of a double consciousness whereby the Negro can only see himself through the "revelation of the other world." That is, of white America. He makes a distinction between the American soul and the Negro soul as the two "warring and conflicting parts of the African American identity, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder"(5). In this paper I will explore Du Bois' concept of double consciousness as it is dealt with in relation to the education of the Negro, in order to outline whether it is possible to be both a Negro and an American.
Du Bois's approach in the text is assertive and charged with a desire to empower the black man. The language that he chooses with words such as 'analyze', 'examine,' 'mission,' 'revelations' and 'reflection' allow him to put himself in an active role in the politics of ...

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that "with unquestioning faith" the Negroes waited for. After two centuries they supposedly attained it with the emancipation of the slaves, but this ideal resulted in mere disappointment and confusion. After the Fifteenth Amendment was enacted, the Negroes were to be educated and learn.. They had faith and desire to learn and integrate themselves, but were faced by the educational problems that Du Bois discusses at length. He refers to the educational problem facing the black man as the paradox of the black savant.

"The innate love of harmony and beauty that set the
ruder souls of his people a dancing and a singing
raise but confusion and doubt in the soul of the black ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 3/30/2004 12:02:48 AM
Category: English
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 2105
Pages: 8

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