W.E.B. Du Bois was a titan among African-American intellectuals and the central figure in black protest politics during the first half of the twentieth century. His record of achievements during his long life (he lived to be ninety-five) is astonishing in its diversity and significance. He was the first black American to do graduate work in Europe, the first to earn a doctorate from Harvard (or any other American university), and the first historian, white or black, to publish in the prestigious Harvard Historical Studies. (Almost forty years after publication of The Suppression of the African Slave Trade to the United States of America in 1896, he produced his monumental Black Reconstruction , a work that has come to be recognized as one of the classics of American historical writing.) His The Philadelphia Negro (1899) was not only the first significant sociological study of an African-American community, but also the first extensive, empir...
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