The Healing of America
WE.B. DuBOIS: BIOGRAPHY OF A RACE. By Daniel Evering Lewis, Henry Holt. $35.
After reviewing this life of 95 years of one who accomplished so much for his race and interracial cooperation, one can understand the author’s need to produce this monumental book of 735 pages. The sixteen pages of rare photographs in the center give the reader a unique view of some of the first civil rights groups being organized at the turn of the century and of the many pioneers in the early struggle. The book traces the many events and controversies in the life of W.E.B. DuBois who was the prime architect of the civil rights movement in the United States. He was the first African American to win a Harvard doctorate and was the first to understand the international implications in the struggle for racial justice. DuBois was also one of the founders of the NAACP and was the fearless editor of The Crisis with a circulation of over one-hundred thousand.
The book also reveals that there were many socially-conscious whites who supported him, including his Harvard professors William James and George Santayana, and other who helped to organize the NAACP. One of the most interesting chapters deals with the controversy between DuBois and Booker T. Washington, the Wizard of Tuskegee, whom he accused of being an accommodator to the Jim Crow system. DuBois died in Ghana on the eve of the 1963 March on Washington. He was in Ghana preparing President Kwame Nkrma for Pan African leadership, This book demonstrates how his life actually changed the course of racism in this country and colonialism in Africa and other parts of the world.
RAYMOND K. DeHAINAUT
Copyright The Human Quest Mar/Apr 1998
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