Socialism and Democracy in W.E.B. Du Bois’s Life, Thought, and Legacy  book cover
1st Edition

Socialism and Democracy in W.E.B. Du Bois’s Life, Thought, and Legacy

ISBN 9780367511524
Published February 1, 2022 by Routledge
294 Pages

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Book Description

Commemorating the 150th anniversary of W. E. B. Du Bois’s birth, the chapters in this book reflect on the local, national, and international significance of his remarkable life and legacy in relation to his specific commitments to socialism and democracy.

Written with contemporary conditions in mind, such as the current political period of economic inequality, the debilitating reality of exploitative economic conditions, an expansive and invasive surveillance state, the grotesque injustice of the prison industrial complex, the ongoing crisis of police violence and the militarization of law enforcement, and a White House unashamedly spewing white supremacist, nationalist rhetoric in word and deed, this book collectively ponders how Du Bois’s radicalism can shape and re-texture historical understanding and underscore a reflective urgency about the future.

In this volume, scholars and activists undertake thoughtful and analytical explorations with regards to how Du Bois’ commitments to socialism and democracy can inform current methodology and praxis.

This book was originally published as a special issue of the journal Socialism and Democracy.

Table of Contents

Introduction: "If we neglect to mark this history, it may be distorted or forgotten": Socialism and Democracy in W. E. B. Du Bois’s Life, Thought, and Legacy

Phillip Luke Sinitiere, Edward Carson, and Gerald Horne

1. The Abolitionist Tradition in the Making of W. E. B. Du Bois’s Marxism and Anti-Imperialism

Jesse Olsavsky

2. "Glances Curiously and Walks On:" Racializing Visibility and Double Consciousness

Brandon Alston

3. What Happens to a Dream Deferred?: W. E. B. Du Bois and the Radical Black Enlightenment/Endarkenment

Carlton D. Floyd and Thomas E. Reifer

4. Darkwater’s Existentialist Socialism

Thomas Meagher

5. Du Bois’s "A World Search for Democracy": The Democratic Roots of Socialism

Lisa McLeod

6. From Philanthropic Black Capitalism to Socialism: Cooperativism in Du Bois’s Economic Thought

Curtis Haynes, Jr.

7. "Listen to the Blood": Du Bois, Cultural Memory, and the Black Radical Tradition in Education

Lasana Kazembe

8. Enlightening the Working Class: W. E. B. Du Bois and the Jefferson School of Social Science

Denise Lynn

9. W. E. B. Du Bois in the Tradition of Radical Blackness: Radicalism, Repression, and Mutual Comradeship, 1930-1960

Charisse Burden-Stelly

10. "There must be no idle mourning": W. E. B. Du Bois’s Legacy as a Black Radical Intellectual

Phillip Luke Sinitiere


Because Time is Long

Lasana Kazembe

The Seventh Son: After W.E.B. Bois

Tara Betts

When W. E. B. Turned 150

Phillip Luke Sinitiere

Of the Passing



Broad Sympathies


Sandra Staton-Taiwo


On W.E.B. Du Bois’s "Feminist, anti-racist, anti-imperialist politics:" An Interview with Alys Eve Weinbaum

Phillip Luke Sinitiere

Excavating History and a Homeplace: An Interview with Whitney Battle-Baptiste on W. E. B. Du Bois’s Impact, Influence, and Legacy

Phillip Luke Sinitiere

New Dimensions of Sino-American Relations and Black Internationalism: An Interview with Yunxiang Gao about W. E. B. Du Bois, Shirley Graham Du Bois, and China

Phillip Luke Sinitiere

"We never capitulated on our right to dissent, to be Communist, socialist, left, and radical":

An Interview with Jarvis Tyner on W. E. B. Du Bois, the DuBois Clubs, and Black Liberation

Phillip Luke Sinitiere and Edward Carson

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Edward Carson is Dean of Multicultural Education at The Governor’s Academy, USA. He received his B.A. in History and Biblical Christianity and an M.Ed. in History Education from Harding University, USA. He is the co-author with John P. Irish of Historical Thinking Skills: A Workbook for European History. He’s an activist in the greater Boston community.

Gerald Horne is the John J. and Rebecca Moores Chair of History and African American Studies at the University of Houston, USA. He is the author of over 30 books on subjects that address racism, labor, white supremacy, black radicalism, black internationalism, civil rights, and film.

Phillip Luke Sinitiere is Scholar in Residence at the W. E. B. Du Bois Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA and teaches history and humanities at the College of Biblical Studies, a predominately African American school in Houston, USA. His essays and books on Du Bois address history, literature, black radicalism, and Pan-Africanism.