Back W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois

1868–1963
W. E. B. Du Bois in 1918 by Cornelius Marion (C.M.) Battey. (Public domain via Wikimedia Commons)

Major works:
The Suppression of the African Slave-Trade to the United States 1638–1870The Souls of Black FolkBlack Reconstruction in AmericaDusk of Dawn

Read an excerpt from

The Souls of Black Folk

W. E. B. Du Bois

Between me and the other world there is ever an unasked question: unasked by some through feelings of delicacy; by others through the difficulty of rightly framing it. All, nevertheless, flutter round it. They approach me in a half-hesitant sort of way, eye me curiously or compassionately, and then, instead of saying directly, How does it feel to be a problem? they say, I know an excellent colored man in my town; or, I fought at Mechanicsville; or, Do not these Southern outrages make your blood boil? At these I smile, or am interested, or reduce the boiling to a simmer, as the occasion may require. To the real question, How does it feel to be a problem? I answer seldom a word.

Read a passage from The Souls of Black Folk by W. E. B. Du Bois
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