What kind of book is Du Bois' Darkwater?
Poems, sociology, sci-fi, and a memoir of a teacher
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I was on a W.E.B. Du Bois kick in early May. I’d been reading parts of his John Brown biography for this piece on the brief but deep friendship of Brown and Harriet Tubman when I came across a 1920 essay of his (via Twitter, I think) called “The Souls of White Folk.”
I’m a latecomer to the Du Bois fandom; nobody assigned his work when I was growing up in South Carolina public schools, but I recognized the title of the essay as a play on his better-known 1903 book The Souls of Black Folk. This essay on white people was so cutting, so prescient, that I did a double-take to make sure it really was more than 100 years old.