Is My Identity My Race?

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Is My Identity My Race? ‘Double Consciousness’, a concept explored in The Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. Du Bois, explains the notion that your identity is divided into several different subcategories, making it impractical to have one single identity. “How It Feels To Be Colored Me” by Zora Neale Hurston describes what separates her identity from her race - categorizing race as insignificant. Both W.E.B. Du Bois and Zora Neale Hurston show the unsettling reality that African Americans faced; however, Hurston 's concept of identity does not align with Du Bois’ idea that an individual is incapable of having a single harmonious identity. Du Bois’ theory of double-consciousness is aimed to refute the way African-Americans are perceived in America. Du Bois states that, “He simply wishes to make it possible for a man to be both a Negro and an American, without being cursed and spit upon by his fellows.” The goal is to be a part of both cultures and, ideally, form it into one single identity. In forming a single identity, African Americans would be able to stray away from “measuring one 's soul by the tape of a world that looks on.” This outlines that double consciousness forces blacks to view themselves in comparison to the way outside forces do. This affects the way black life is shaped, in which stereotypes begin to become a reality. It’s hard to become something that is not openly displayed in the community. Du Bois continues his argument by reminding readers that “Through history, the powers of single black men flash here and there like falling stars, and die sometimes before the world has rightly gauged their brightness.” This states that the double perception hinders the brightness of an individuals ability. In contrast to thi... ... middle of paper ... ...are effects of racism. From his point, identity is important and needs to be addressed. Its bigger than demanding your individuality. There are certain injustices that need to be fixed. To conclude, Du Bois and Hurston both have different tactics for tackling double-consciousness and the effects it has on the masses. Du Bois acknowledges the differences and analyzes its effects on a larger scale. In order to diminish stereotypical issues, Du Bois believes that African Americans must integrate their identity into one. Whereas, Hurston believes that it is an insufficient and should not be used as an excuse. She recognizes the differences but chooses not to acknowledge them. Hurston believes that there shouldn 't be time wasted on these matters. According to her beliefs, there is no time to ponder on the past, or present, racial discriminations — there is no reason to.
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