Apush Dbq Essay

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DBQ – WASHINGTON VS DUBOIS Booker T Washington and W.E.B DuBois offered different strategies for dealing with the problems of poverty and discrimination faced by black Americans at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries. Although both men hoped to eventually achieve the same goals – social, political and economic equality for blacks – their proposed methods of achieving these aims were almost contradictory. Both helped blacks to make some strides, but perhaps the times called for a more united stand. Washington’s basic philosophy was to work within the system, and gain economic strength. He urged blacks to first achieve economic power through education in industrial areas, believing that with economic equality came the power to bring social and political freedoms as well. In 1860 and 1920, the percentage of blacks enrolled (ages 15-19) in school increased from zero to fifty percent. The literacy rate rose by thirty percent between 1890 and 1910. Although Washington’s strategy had its successes, many people believed that the successes were insignificant and that Washington was selling out white society. In his concessions to white Americans, in the Atlanta Compromise, Washington surprised many blacks. He painted a picture of the black man as a loyal servant ready to work arduously for white employers. He urged blacks to have patience and to gain self-respect through material progress. “No race that has anything to contribute to the markets of the world is long in any degree ostracized” he stated. Washington recognized the resistance that white America instinctively felt toward any form of radical racial reforms. Although his strategy did not produce many immediate rewards for blacks at the time, it was important in the long run. W.E.B DuBois stood in sharp contrast to Washington’s attempts at working within the system. DuBois looked at the

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