Essay The Souls Of Black Folk

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The Souls of Black Folk, overall, is a candid, yet thorough discourse surrounding the social position of blacks throughout space and time in the United States, addressing slavery, Emancipation, and Reconstruction. The central thesis of The Souls of Black Folk revolves around the concept of a double-consciousness, or a veil. Throughout the book W.E.B. DuBois elaborates upon it in different social and historical contexts. Basically, the double-consciousness refers to the unique position that black people find themselves in living in America. This double-consciousness can also be referred to as “second-sight.” In American society, a black person is faced with the socially constructed reality of his/her difference from the majority. This difference is perceived because they see themselves through the eyes of others and measure themselves according to that standard, as opposed to personal self-realization, or self-consciousness. Another characteristic of the black’s social position is the veil. This veil represents the boundary between them and opportunity for self-advancement and fulfillment. As a result, many other areas in a black person’s world become fragmented into two opposing and warring ideals, between compliance and resistance. However, DuBois does raise the question of whether black people are in their social positions (complete with the veil and double-consciousness) because of prejudice, or prejudice arises from the aforementioned social position.
DuBois’ piece of…

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