Booker T and WEB and Garvey comparison.docx - Three Visions...

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Three Visions for African AmericansBy the 1890s,Ku Klux Klanterrorism,lynchings,racial segregation laws, andvoting restrictionsessentially canceled out therights provided by the13th, 14th, and 15thamendments.The problem for African Americans in the early years of the 20thcentury was how to respond to a white society that for the most partdid not want to treat black people as equals. Three black visionaries offered different solutions to the problem.Booker T. Washingtonargued for African Americans to first improve themselves through education and job training. Equal rightswould naturally come later, he believed.W.E.B. Du Boisagreed that self-improvement through education was a good idea, but he alsobelieved that African Americans should receive immediate full citizenship rights. Another activist,Marcus Garvey, believed blackAmericans would never be accepted as equals in the United States. He pushed for them to develop their own separate communities oreven emigrate (return) to Africa.1)Did African Americans have true equality in the early 20thcentury? What do you think was keeping them from this?No, they thought African Americans were uneducated.Booker T. WashingtonWashington was born a slave in Virginia in 1856. Early on in his life, he developed a love of reading and learning. Afterattending an elementary school for African-American children, Washington walked 500 miles to enroll in HamptonInstitute, one of the few black high schools in the South.After graduating, Washington worked as a high school teacher. In 1881, he was asked by his mentor, a white formerUnion general named Samuel Chapman Armstrong, to found a school in Tuskegee, Alabama, for the training of blackteachers, farmers, and skilled workers.The Tuskegee Institute, which emphasized training in agriculture and mechanics,became one of the most important places for African American education and political influence in the United States.Washington argued that African Americans must concentrate on educating themselves, learning useful trades, and investing in theirown businesses. Hard work and economic progress, he believed, would prove to whites the value of blacks to the American economy.White Americans viewed Washington’s vision as the key to racial peace in the nation. With the aid of white philanthropists such asAndrew Carnegie, the Tuskegee Institute and its philosophy of economics first and equal rights later thrived.Washington considered himself a bridge between the races. But other black leaders criticized him for tolerating racial segregation at atime of increasing anti-back violence and discrimination.Washington did publicly speak out against the evils of segregation, lynching, and discrimination in voting. He also secretlyparticipated in lawsuits involving voter registration tests, exclusion of blacks from juries, and unequal railroad facilities. However, bythe time Washington died in 1915, segregation laws and racial discrimination were firmly in place throughout the South and much of

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Term
Fall
Professor
Scott Tubbs
Tags
W E B Du Bois

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