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The Gift of Black Folk (AmazonClassics Edition) by [W. E. B. Du Bois]
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The Gift of Black Folk (AmazonClassics Edition) Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 94 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

William Edward Burghardt (W. E. B.) Du Bois (1868–1963) was born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. A scholar, activist, and author, Du Bois was not only the first African American to earn a PhD from Harvard University but was also the most celebrated advocate of African American rights in the early twentieth century. He cofounded the NAACP in 1909 and founded the organization’s magazine, The Crisis, which is now the oldest Black publication in the world.

In addition to his work as a professor of history, sociology, and economics at Atlanta University, Du Bois worked his entire life to promote civil rights, Pan-Africanism, women’s rights, and nuclear disarmament. A prolific writer, Du Bois penned many works, including Black Reconstruction in America, The Philadelphia Negro, and the seminal sociological work The Souls of Black Folk.

Du Bois died in Accra, Ghana, at the age of ninety-five—just a day before Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his iconic “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington.

Amazon.com Review

William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (1868-1963) is the greatest of African American intellectuals--a sociologist, historian, novelist, and activist whose astounding career spanned the nation's history from Reconstruction to the civil rights movement. Born in Massachusetts and educated at Fisk, Harvard, and the University of Berlin, Du Bois penned his epochal masterpiece, The Souls of Black Folk, in 1903. It remains his most studied and popular work; its insights into Negro life at the turn of the 20th century still ring true.

With a dash of the Victorian and Enlightenment influences that peppered his impassioned yet formal prose, the book's largely autobiographical chapters take the reader through the momentous and moody maze of Afro-American life after the Emancipation Proclamation: from poverty, the neoslavery of the sharecropper, illiteracy, miseducation, and lynching, to the heights of humanity reached by the spiritual "sorrow songs" that birthed gospel and the blues. The most memorable passages are contained in "On Booker T. Washington and Others," where Du Bois criticizes his famous contemporary's rejection of higher education and accommodationist stance toward white racism: "Mr. Washington's programme practically accepts the alleged inferiority of the Negro races," he writes, further complaining that Washington's thinking "withdraws many of the high demands of Negroes as men and American citizens." The capstone of The Souls of Black Folk, though, is Du Bois' haunting, eloquent description of the concept of the black psyche's "double consciousness," which he described as "a peculiar sensation.... One ever feels this twoness--an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder." Thanks to W.E.B. Du Bois' commitment and foresight--and the intellectual excellence expressed in this timeless literary gem--black Americans can today look in the mirror and rejoice in their beautiful black, brown, and beige reflections. --Eugene Holley Jr. --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08VN61CXZ
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ AmazonClassics (March 16, 2021)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ March 16, 2021
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 1739 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 207 pages
  • Page numbers source ISBN ‏ : ‎ 1542030846
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 94 ratings

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William Edward Burghardt “W. E. B.” Du Bois was an American sociologist, historian, civil rights activist, Pan-Africanist, author, and editor. Born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, Du Bois grew up in a relatively tolerant and integrated community.

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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
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