Description - The Negro by W. E. B. Du Bois
This classic treatise by W E B Du Bois (1868-1963), the most important African American leader of the first half of the twentieth century and the cofounder of the NAACP, presents a brief history of Africa and people of African descent. To appreciate this pioneering work, published in 1915, it is important to recall the historical context of American society at the start of the last century. As historian Kenneth Goings points out in his introduction, during the first half of Du Bois's life, there were between 3000 and 5000 lynchings of African American men, women, and children; separation of the races was upheld by the Supreme Court (Plessy v Ferguson, 1896); the vast majority of black Americans lived in abject poverty; and bogus racial theories that invariably put African Americans at the bottom of a racial hierarchy were commonly accepted, even in educated circles. More than eighty-five years after its first publication, "The Negro" is still well worth reading as a groundbreaking work.
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Publisher: Prometheus Books
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