Du Bois’ take on Individualism and Freedom

Du Bois’ take on Individualism and Freedom


DuBois’ take on Individualism and Freedom

TheSouls of Black Folk by W.E. B. Du Bois

Publishedin 1903, TheSouls of Black Folk isan African-American literature written by W.E. B. Du Bois. The textwas developed in favor of the sources of the problems that relate tothe black people in the Diaspora. The color line among other factorshas been described to be the immediate cause of the problems faced bythe blacks. In addition, the individualism among the Americans isseen to infringe the freedom of the blacks that has great impact onthe national history of racism from 1903 to date. Du Bois criticallyanalyzes such issues in the following different ways as demonstratedin his writing.

DuBois’ take on Individualism and Freedom

Accordingto Du Bois, slavery was the greatest aspect that dispelled freedomfrom the individuals. Native Americans valued individualism so much,that they could not use their own people to work in theiragricultural plantations. Instead, they involved the black men in allthe hard jobs and farming activities. Most of those who were underthe slavery bondage faced inhumane treatment from their white owners,because they were owned like property. This situation facilitatedtheir sorrows, their prejudices and limited their freedom to leadgood lives.

DuBois described individualism as an aspect of looking at one’s selfthrough the eyes of others. In addition, he describes individualismas an impediment to democracy which was led to the denial of freedomto the black people. The lack of democracy in the society deniedAfrican Americans voting rights, which degraded their civil status.The same affected their right to attending higher educationalinstitutions. Despite the fight for democracy by Du Bois, otherleaders, the white American governments argued to the contrary. Theirview of freedom was totally against the rational view of freedom byAfrican Americans. This is the reason Du Bois said that Washington’sidea was contradicting the urge to enhance freedom by eliminatingracism.

Accordingto Du Bois, Americans are materialistic and individualists. Being aschool teacher at one of the schools in Tennessee, he got enoughevidence from the way he observed the society in his position. Herealized that the individual attention to gain wealth was givenhigher priority than the other important aspect of the society, suchas education. African Americans were only taught how to earn moneyrather than balance between the standards of human culture and ideason how to cope with life. Du Bois wanted a training that could leadto a return in education as a way of introducing equality that wouldintroduce the African Americans to freedom.

DuBois describes freedom to be the only tool that could save AfricaAmerican from slavery. In this case, he refers to the freedom tolive, freedom of speech, the freedom of democracy and work, thefreedom of socialization and aspiration as well as the right tomovement. Du Bois also stated that such freedoms would only berealized if all people were involved in the freedom efforts. On thecontrary to this expectation, Individualism was an infringement tothe process human socialization in the racist America.

Accordingto Du Bois, the lack of civil rights and freedom for black peoplewidened the gap between them and white Americans. Through the effortsof Du Bois, black people realized that there were denied a lot ofbasic human freedoms. In addition, they realized they deserved betterlives, rather than their experiences in detention and bondage. Theywere not satisfied by the way they were treated by the whites. Asmuch as some of the slaves could access formal life, they were stillenslaved to their masters. According to Du Bois, this was the mostsevere impediment to their freedom.

Inhis argument for the freedom of the African Americans, Du Boispresents the issues that affected the freedom of the black people.The efforts of Du Bois were not only focused on attaining freedom,but also to end the effects of slavery. As a result, his effortsfocused on using different methods to ensure that the black peopleunderstood the concept of freedom and the gains from it. This was thereason why the fight among the blacks was to ensure they transformtheir life into a reality by enjoying the basic human rights of anormal civilian in America.

Accordingto Du Bois, the efforts of the freedom loving citizens and thesupport given by the blacks by rational organizations, was thenecessity towards freedom. This would only be achieved if people weretreated equally and considered equal citizens under the constitution.With the achievement of equal freedoms, African Americans could enjoybetter standards of living and social amenities like education andhealth care. In addition, they could challenge the status quo in thecountry by opposing individualism as well as attain self-development.In addition, black people would be able to practice the religions aspart of their freedom of worship. Moreover, they would own resources,cultivate their own land and elect their preferred leaders as aresult of attaining freedom.

&nbsp TheIntersection with the National History regarding Race

Inhis writings, Du Bois tried to create an understanding of the effectsbrought by racism are made clear to everyone. Through theunderstanding created by Du Bois on freedom and individualism, racismrelates to different aspects that are against development of thenation. In modern day, racism has been considered a threat to theinternational unity. Different countries, organizations, andactivists have made efforts to ensure that racism does not influencethe modern society.

Fromthe Du Bois view, racism and individualism have significant effectson the United States and the world as a whole nation. This is becauseseveral issues that infringe human freedom emanate racial dominationand racial exploitation. Therefore, people should fight racism as aconsistent effort to make the modern society better. According to DuBois, fighting racism is a continuous cause, especially in a worldwith different people from different races.

Topromote freedoms in the current world, education is important. Therise of schools among the blacks came because of the abolition ofslavery and the attainment of freedom. The same can be used to fightracism and promote freedom in the 21stcentury. The fight against racism and promotion of freedom will bringchanges that are essential to human dwelling in every part of theglobe.

Tofight racism in the modern world, basic human rights and freedomsshould be considered to be universal. This is because the lack ofbasic freedoms is a result of racist discrimination, not only in theUnited States, but globally. In 1903, Du Bois stated that theimmediate tragedy that affects the nation is the denial of freedomand racism. The same scenario is observed to date. To ensureequality, citizens need to elect their preferred government officialswithout any prejudice of color, race or ethnicity. This would be thetrue essence of ending individualism and promoting freedoms in thecurrent world.