Booker T. Washington And. B. Dubois Essay

Booker T. Washington And. B. Dubois Essay

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In class, we discussed the works of many amazing authors. Two amazing authors, and great leaders as well, that stood out to me the most would be Booker T. Washington and W.E.B Dubois. You could easily compare the two when talking about themes such as post slavery and the reconstruction era. Although they advocated for the same causes, each author had their own views on the subject in itself. There were many points that they strongly disagreed on such as economics, behavior, identity, and education as well. The different philosophies mainly focused on ending racial injustice and the black community as a whole. Each African American leader had unique points of views on the lives and conditions of African Americans in that time and what should be done about it.
Booker T. Washington was born and raised in the south. His mother had been a former slave and his father a white man that he didn’t know. Washington was born into slavery in Virginia and was later freed after the Civil War, which is what shaped his philosophy and his ideas. After the civil war, he went to live with his mother and stepfather in Malden where he worked as a salt miner, coal packer, and a house servant while going to school. He attended the Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute specifically built to train African Americans. He completed his education there and then began teaching at the Tuskegee Institute which he helped found. He became known by his first short speech known as the “Atlanta Compromise”. He believed that African Americans should “defer the quest for equal rights in return for low-level economic opportunities”. (447) Washington believed that economic independence and the ability to prove yourself as a productive member of society would e...


... middle of paper ...


...ck up his reasoning why.
Although Dubois greatly agreed with many of Washington’s points and ideas he did believe that Washington was one of the first intellectual black men who wanted to help and advocate for the rights and equality of black people as a race. Both men agree that there needed to be a change. They wanted to racism in America to end and they both wanted education for the African American race. However, the lives that each leader went through and the obstacles along with opportunities shaped different views in the minds of both men. Washington being born into slavery still viewed the life of blacks through those eyes and Dubois being a freedman didn’t understand or agree with this view. He being free saw the world through a different lens not only because of his life as a free man but also through the education he received as well as an adolescent.

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