Double Conscious is Not a Barrier to Success Essay

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  1086 Words
Date:  2022-05-09

The end of slavery did not mean full freedom for the Africans Americans. Yes, they were free from captivity, but the Blacks had no idea of what to expect after their independence. The Africans Americans realized there is something else they are missing for them to feel totally free. From living in poor, harsh conditions, dangerous poverty levels, poor healthcare facilities, inaccessibility to education, lack of awareness in hygiene and proper sanitation and victimization are some of the everyday situations that every African American has been through in his life. Discrimination of the Blacks was not only an American issue but also an issue of international concern. In this essay, I will discuss on challenges and examples of two different African American writers, and how they overcome those challenges to be both successful and inspirational historical figures in the Blackman's history. Therefore, double conscience can be a challenge but not a barrier or an excuse in the fight for success.

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Double consciousness is the act of seeing yourself in the eyes of other people. In this context, William Edward Burghardt Du Bois' book "The Souls of Black Folk" he feels like his identity is of two different regions, therefore, making it hard for him to know where he belongs. Living in a society that has oppressed and devalued you, unifying and living as one family remains a challenge. Du Bois is in a dilemma between which of the two identities fits him well; should he refer himself as an African or an American, a condition that is imposed on Blacks by default since they are settling in the States. In Booker Taliaferro Washington book "Up from Slavery," he also felt like the other races do not formally recognize Africans as equal to them, but he did not hold on to such fears. Instead, he stood up for what he wanted. Booker T Washington and W.E.B. Du Bois both see double conscious has a substantial impact on the personal growth of other African Americans, but they differ on methodologies on how to fight double conscious as a challenge to the Black's community. Du Bois criticized Washington's model of liberation assuming that it needs more patience and the blacks will still be striving. He argues that Washingtons model significantly affected and influenced many Africans Americans mindsets since Washington had a million of followers from the North and South.

Du Bois and Washington differed in their methodology to address liberation to their society. Du Bois believed in the immediate up rise and fight for their rights. Washington in his book focused on making sure he equips his students with both academic and technological skills while Du Bois encouraged all artists to keep doing their work and stop fearing the fact that they are Blacks. Washington used this phrase "Cast down your buckets where you are" more frequently in his endless support of embracing benefits of labor. Du Bois believed that no one would come and give the Black political and social equality, therefore, it's time they stop sleeping and stand up on their feet to find a way outside the veil while Washington assumes that full freedom will automatically come if they fight for their economic freedom first. His perspective is following an economic model whereby he is focused on industrialization if most of the Blacks gain academic and technological skills they will win social status in the society that will earn them some respect. The Atlanta Exposition speech is a testimony to Booker T Washington how education has opened up doors for him and being able to make his name prominent to many top official leaders(including the president) despite the race. He insisted that every African American should be financially stable through maximizing manual labor to win respect from other races.

In Du Bois book, we see how the idea of double conscious affect the way many African Americans were thinking. Despite the fact that, both Whites and Blacks live in the same country there is a significant gap between these two communities. As Du Bois says, the Whites confronted us asking about how we feel about our place in the society "How does it feel like to be a problem? They say..."(Du Bois, " Soul Black" 7). The African Americans had limited access to educational and health rights and other forms of injustices due to their skin color. Therefore Du Bois argues that so long this racism still existed it will be more hard for an African American to make it in life since the Whites are more dominant and exposed to more knowledge and resources than the Blacks. Booker T. Washington has an opposite perspective on this issue of racism; he is not handling it directly instead his hands are wide open to work with anyone from another race so long as it is contributing to their personal growth. For example, in his speech, he argued that since Blacks make up of approximately a third of the Southern population, it will be necessary if they are considered in issues concerning development, and he emphasized that their social differences should not come up as a barrier in mutual progress (Washington 111). It's wise for both communities to work together for the whole third of the population to contribute to economic prosperity. He also applauded that the Atlantic Exposition contributions in supporting a good relationship between the two races. In all his success from his career growth from a student to teacher/public speaker, Tuskegee Institute is a combination of both hard work and support from friends of which some were Whites.

Washington and Du Bois serve as role models to their society, their courage, determination, and inspiration is a true reflection of what a leader should act. These two writers show the essence of self-determination and passion is the key to being successful, despite your race. The Atlanta Exposition speech were the best moments of Booker T. Washington's career where he received a more positive reaction from the Whites than the blacks. The effects of double conscious can give you emotional stress, but it is evident through these two books we learn that we only need passion, determination, and consistency to overcome the fear of double consciousness for you to succeed in life.

Works cited

Du Bois, W. E. B. "The Souls of Black Folk, ed. David W. Blight and Robert Gooding-Williams." 1997.

Du Bois, William Edward Burghardt. The Oxford WEB Du Bois Reader. Oxford University Press, USA, 1996.

Washington, Booker T. Up from Slavery. Simon and Schuster, 2013.

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