Celebrating Black History Month: Booker T. Washington

We shall prosper in proportion as we learn to
dignify and glorify labor and put brains and skill
into the common occupations of life.

Discussion Topics Related to the Life of Booker T. Washington
Booker T. Washington believed that hard work would be the salvation of the African-American people. He saw hard work as the means through which African-Americans could gain respect and acceptances by the white community.

While both W. E. B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington addressed the race problem of the early twentieth century, the men differed greatly in their approaches to the issue. Washington emphasized vocational education, saying that hard work and productivity would be the salvation of the Black people. Du Bois, however, believed that education in the arts and sciences was far more important than vocational education. In fact, he vehemently attacked Washington in The Souls of Black Folks, saying that Washington's emphasis on vocational training was equal to "industrial slavery" and "civic death."

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