B. Du Bois

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W.E.B. Du Bois, the cofounder of the NAACP and the leader of the Niagara Movement, which pursued equal rights for blacks, once said“The history of the American Negro is the history of this strife, -- this longing to attain self-conscious manhood, to merge his double self into a better and truer self. In this merging he wishes neither of the older selves to be lost... He simply wishes to make it possible for a man to be both a Negro and an American...” The enslavement of African American’s well through the 17th marks the struggles that African Americans have endured throughout their history. Despite being abolished by the 13th amendment slavery still existed through new means of forced labor that quickly arose after the civil war.…show more content…
However despite all this adversary and restriction the African American community still managed to facilitate much needed social change and reform which stimulated great cultural change as white Americans were forced to discredit their beliefs of supremacy and dominance over all other races. After the Civil War Southern culture remained deeply racist and hostile against African Americans. Although the Union was victorious in the war and were able to abolish slavery due to the passage of the 13th Amendment, it was as if they had not succeeded at all as "There [was] a kind of innate feeling, a lingering hope among many in the South that slavery will be regalvanized in some shape or other. They tried by their laws to make a worse slavery than there was before, for the freedman has not the protection which the master from interest gave him before”(Du Bois). This was evident by the implementation of black codes which were intended to restrict the freedom that African Americans newly possessed. These laws which were passed immediately after the 13th amendment forced African American people to work as punishment for crimes that were selectively enforced against them. Furthermore, the enforcement of these laws allowed for southern white people to maintain their cultural views of black people serving only as labor workers in order to maintain and boost their economy. This perception of
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