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Essay on W.E.B. DuBois' The Souls of Black Folk

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W.E.B. DuBois' The Souls of Black Folk


W.E.B. DuBois, in The Souls of Black Folk describes the very poignant image of a veil between the blacks and the whites in his society. He constructs the concept of a double-consciousness, wherein a black person has two identities as two completely separate individuals, in order to demonstrate the fallacy of these opinions. J.S. Mill also describes a certain fallacy in his own freedom of thought, a general conception of individuals that allows them to accept something similar to DuBois’ double-consciousness and perpetuates the existence of the veil.

DuBois’ double-consciousness is quite simply the twoness of American Negroes. It is this sense of “always looking at one’s self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity.” (DuBois 3). DuBois depicts a world wherein the blacks of America wish to preserve their Negro heritage because of its message for the world, as well as the construction of America because of its ultimate good. As long as the veil exists, however, ...


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