Compare And Contrast Booker T Washington On African American Equality

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Achieving African American Equality Booker T. Washington and W.E.B Du Bois were two of the most influential advocates for African American equality during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries (Blatty, 1). Although both men ultimately had the same goal, their methods for achieving African American equality were remarkably different. To begin, the men had conflicting ideas about what constituted as African American equality. Booker T. Washington argued that the accumulation of wealth and the ability to prove that Blacks were productive members of society would be the mark of true equality for African Americans (Painter, 155). Because of this, Washington was less concerned about political rights and more on promoting the policy of accommodation. In other words, Washington felt that equality could be achieved by appealing to the white Southerner. Washington urged Blacks to accept segregation for the time being and focus on proving their equality through financial independence (Painter, 155). On the contrary, W.E.B Du Bois sharply disagreed with the idea of accommodation. Du Bois believed that passively accepting segregation would only enforce the notion that African Americans were inferior citizens (Blatty, 1). Instead, Du Bois called for direct action that would result in a demand for equal political rights, such as voting. Du …show more content…

As mentioned earlier, Du Bois most prominently stressed education as a means to earn political power. Du Bois argued that political power could be accumulated through social change facilitated by the Talented Tenth (Painter, 155). In other words, Du Bois thought it was important for the most educated African Americans to lead the masses of the African American race out of oppression. Thus, W.E.B Du Bois stressed the importance of education and political action above all

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