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Soul of the Black Folk

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W.E.B. Du Bois, an American civil rights activist, establishes the black population’s prominence within the Veil. As a college professor and Harvard graduate, his educational views enlighten the uncultivated people who unknowingly play a major role in society. He attains the audience’s engrossment through anecdotal evidence and advanced diction. Du Bois varies his rhetorical strategies in “The Souls of Black Folk” to emphasize his statements’ purpose.

Du Bois begins the first chapter with his first encounter with racism, then defines how he sees the color-line and his need to become more superior to those who belittle his race (43). Repetition exhibits through the question “How does it feel to be a problem?” (44). During the early 1900s, the question conveys society’s general opinion towards the African Americans–which people abstain from asking–because along with racism emerges tension (43).

Du Bois carries a bitter tone in chapter 3 that expresses his conflict with Booker T. Washington’s negligence towards the African Americans’ morale and civil rights. He vilifies Washington by wording that “…there is among educated and thoughtful men…feeling of deep regret…which some of Mr. Washington’s theories have gained” (82). Du Bois indicates that Washington gains followers because Washington’s followers decide to abandon their efforts in attaining their rights, due to the ineffective movements that took place (89). He agrees with making education more accessible to the black population, but refutes Washington’s argument that the blacks should settle.

Du Bois’ strong imagery and personification in chapter 5 impels the audience to develop a connection, influencing how the audience views the beautiful motherland–Atlanta (109). Yet, he also blames Atlanta, who resorts to a materialistic world: “Atlanta must not leave the south to dream of material prosperity…” (112). But, Du Bois reveals the beauty that he sees before materialism and wealth transpire, displaying his resentment towards the

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