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W. E. B. Du Bois was a public intellectual, sociologist, and activist on behalf of the African American community. He profoundly shaped black political culture in the United States through his founding role in the NAACP, as well as internationally through the Pan-African movement. Du Bois's sociological and historical research on African-American communities and culture broke ground in many areas, including the history of the post-Civil War Reconstruction period. Du Bois was also a prolific author of novels, autobiographical accounts, innumerable editorials and journalistic pieces, and several works of history. Published posthumously in 1968, The Autobiography of W. E. B. Du Bois is his last and most complete autobiography. Covering his life over almost a century of living in America, it's the closest thing we have to a true autobiography of this important scholar and activist. The book, broken up into three parts, delves into the 90-year-old Du Bois's thoughts on everything from his relationship with sex to his storied association with the NAACP to his political persecution during the Cold War years to his many travels abroad.
As Du Bois writes, he takes the reader on a journey to "view my life as frankly and fully as I can." With a series introduction by editor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and an introduction by Werner Sollors, this edition is essential for anyone interested in African American history.
Henry Louis Gates, Jr., is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University. He has edited several major reference works, including Dictionary of African Biography, African American Lives, Africana, and African American National Biography. In addition, he is Editor in Chief of the Oxford African American Studies Center (www.oxfordaasc.com).
Series Introduction: The Black Letters on the Sign ; Introduction ; Part One ; I. My 15th Trip Abroad ; II. Western Europe ; III. The Pawned Peoples ; IV. The Soviet Union ; V. China ; Interlude: Communism ; Part Two ; VI. My Birth and Family ; VII. Boyhood in Great Barrington ; VIII. I Go South ; IX. Harvard in the Last Decades of the 19th Century ; X. Europe 1892 to 1894 ; XI. Wilberforce ; XII. University of Pennsylvania ; XIII. Atlanta University ; XIV. The Niagara Movement ; XV. The NAACP ; XVI. My Character ; XVII. The Depression ; XVIII. New Deal for Negroes ; XIX. I Return to the NAACP ; Part Three ; XX. Work for Peace ; XXI. An Indicted Criminal ; XXII. The Trial ; XXIII. My Tenth Decade ; Postlude ; Index ; William Edward Burghardt Du Bois: A Chronology ; Selected Bibliography
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