Born just five years after the abolition of slavery, WEB Du Bois died the night before Martin Luther King delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech. In the many decades between, Du Bois contributed as much to the political and social advancement of African Americans as any other figure.
This book offers an accessible brief introduction to the life and times of Du Bois. It takes in his many achievements, such as being the first black man to earn a PhD from Harvard and cofounding the NAACP, and sets them alongside the seismic political changes of the 20th century - many of which Du Bois weighed in on, including anti-imperialist and anti-colonial struggles across Asia and Africa. Bill V. Mullen reveals a Du Bois who was focused not just on the immediate question of African American rights, but also took up the question of socialism, the rise of communism, and the complicated interrelationship of capitalism, poverty, and racism.
The picture that emerges here is of a powerfully original thinker, fiercely engaged with the political, economic, and social questions of his day never letting up in his struggle to change the world for the better.
©2016 Bill V. Mullen (P)2017 Bill V. Mullen