Explorations in Black Leadership

Co-Directed by Phyllis Leffler & Julian Bond

Du Bois, W. E. B. (1868–1963)

Born in Massachusetts, Du Bois was an educator, civil rights activist, and journalist. After graduating from Fisk University, he became the first African American to earn a doctorate from Harvard in 1895 and went on to teach at Atlanta University. The Souls of Black Folk, published in 1903, offered an alternative perspective to Booker T. Washington. He demanded the same opportunities for blacks as whites had in America, also arguing that African Americans had a responsibility to uplift those with fewer opportunities. As a political activist, Du Bois was a cofounder of the NAACP and Niagara Movement and helped organize several Pan-African conferences, His magnum opus, Black Reconstruction in America, was published in 1935. He became a communist in 1961 and moved to Ghana. See also Niagara Movement.