The Journey to the Promised Land: The African American Struggle for Development since the Civil War

By Dione Brooks Taylor; Dickson A. Mungazi | Go to book overview
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4

Obstacles to the Journey: Conflict in the Strategy

As a rule the one-teacher schools do not give instruction beyond the 5th grade.

W.E.B. Du Bois, 1926


DU BOIS AND THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT

Among the African American leaders who opposed Washington was W.E.B. Du Bois, a Ph.D. graduate from Harvard University. Like William Trotter, Du Bois grew up in Massachusetts. After high school he went to the South for three years to attend Fisk University and to teach in Tennessee rural schools during the summers. In 1890 he entered Harvard University, where, for the next three years, he met and knew Trotter, who was admitted into Harvard University in 1891, and whom he described as a stubborn, influential member of his class. Du Bois and Trotter joined a party of African American students who traveled to Amherst to see the graduation of two prominent African American members of their movement. Du Bois then became professor of sociology at Atlanta University, where he began to write extensively on issues of great concern to African Americans following the Plessy decision of 1896.

At Atlanta he kept to the college community as much as possible, avoided the embarrassment of being black in the South, and devoted himself to the task of uplifting his fellow African Americans through the establishment of what was known as scientific truth. In the late 1890s his racial philosophy was much like Washington’s and it is said that he

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