Freedomways Reader: Prophets in Their Own Country

By Esther Cooper Jackson; Constance Pohl | Go to book overview

47
Conference of Encyclopedia Africana, No. 4, 1963

W. E.B. DU BOIS

Dr. Du Bois delivered this talk at the University of Ghana, December 15, 1962. In 1961 Kwame Nkrumah, the president of the new nation of Ghana and a leader of the anticolonial movement in Africa, had invited W.E.B. Du Bois to live in Ghana and complete work on the African Encyclopedia.

I wish first to express my sincere thanks to those of you here who have accepted the invitation of our Secretariat to participate in this Conference and thus assist us in the preparatory work which we have undertaken for the creation of an Encyclopedia Africana.

Had there been any doubts in your minds of the importance of African Studies, I am sure the papers and discussions of the past week have dispelled them. The wide attendance at the First International Congress of Africanists attests to the almost feverish interest throughout the world in the hitherto "Dark Continent."

It remains, therefore, for me only to lay before you the importance of an Encyclopedia Africana based in Africa and compiled by Africans.

-269-

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