Who is William Edward Burghardt Du Bois?June 26, 2021
He is an American sociologist, politician and human rights activist.
He is the most important leader of the Black protest movement in the USA in the first half of the 20th century. He contributed to the creation of the National Association for the Advancement of Blacks (NAACP) in 1909. Between 1910 and 1934 he was the director of the association’s publication, Crisis.
Du Bois, who also worked for the Pan-Africanism movement, which stemmed from the idea that all people of African descent should act together for their independence, was vice-president of the first Pan-African Conference held in London in 1900. He also played a major role in organizing the four Pan-African Conferences held between 1919 and 1927. Du Bois was among the founders of the “Niagara Movement”, which was formed against the most influential black leader of the time, Booker T. Washington, by criticizing him. While Du Bois believed that research in the social sciences was needed to solve the problem of racial segregation, he later came to the conclusion that social change could only be achieved through protest movements and resistance in the face of laws against blacks. For this reason, he opposed B. T. Washington, who argued that blacks should work hard to gain respect in the eyes of whites. In the 1930s, he argued that blacks should establish a separate group economy of cooperatives against poverty. In 1909, he led the establishment of the National Association for Advancement of Colored People NAACP to replace the organization weakened by internal strife and Washington’s opposition. Du Bois, research director and board member of the NAACP, and editor-in-chief of Crais, its monthly newspaper, was also a member of the Socialist Party from 1910 to 1912.
Du Bois, who left the NAACP in 1934 due to differences of opinion, returned to Atlanta University and was appointed head of the sociology department. In 1940 he published a magazine called Pbylon, which covered race and cultural issues. He returned to the NAACP as director of research from 1944-1948.
Du Bois, who was a consultant at the founding congress of the United Nations in 1945, brought the problems of American blacks to the agenda at the UN. Du Bois, who ran for New York senatorship from the American Labor Party in 1950, was prosecuted in 1950 on the grounds that he was an agent of a foreign power. He joined the Communist Party in 1961, became a citizen of Ghana at the request of the President of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah, with whom he had previously worked with in the Pan-Africanism movement, and settled there, where he directed the Encyclopaedia Africana.
– “Believe in life”
– Black nationalism and socialism
Prepared by: Sociologist Ömer YILDIRIM
Source: Omer YILDIRIM’s Personal Lecture Notes. Atatürk University Sociology Department 1st Year “Introduction to Philosophy” and 2nd, 3rd, 4th Grade “History of Philosophy” Lecture Notes (Ömer YILDIRIM); Open Education Philosophy Textbook