‘The African Roots’, written by Du Bois continue to stand out as one of best pieces in literature tailored to address some of the major problems the society we live in face. While this book remains one of the most read, it is difficult to conclude that those who have read it established a clear understanding of what the book talks about. Even most literature review and criticism publications have not done much in offering a clear presentation of its content. It is the purpose of this paper to rectify this development. In so doi8ng, it the paper will look into the purpose of the book, the argument within it, existing presuppositions and its epistemology.
Right from the outset, a keen reader of ‘’African Roots of War’’ is able to deduce that the central concern of Du Bois centers on the social dilemma of race and class in the society. Thus, the book explores the need for a multidimensional approach analysis designed to identify and seek to understand how race and class intersect as not only both modes of resistance, but also as modes of domination on both national and international level.
Du Bois argues that the problem experienced in the twentieth century rests color-line. In this context, the scholar opines that white race in the society is deliberately making attempts to dominate the black race in the most important aspects of the society, with these aspects including but not limited to socio-political and economic aspects (Du, 72). The black race on the other hand, is making attempts at ensuring that this kind of development does not occur. It is this reality that is causing the dominant rift between the upper and the lower class.
A closer read of the book reveal an assumed mutual belief between what Du Bois talks about, and those background information he provides regarding the African society. The author reminds the audience that what the dark race of mankind is currently facing has its origin in the white domination which began many years ago. In this context, the Du Bois assumes that everyone listening to his analysis of the dark race and the predicament it faces, has a background knowledge of the white-generated capitalism.
It is safe to say that most of what Du Bois talks about contains some form of reason and truth. in the thoughts of a number of scholars within the disciplines of social sciences such as Leiman (14), the root cause of what the current society is facing in the form of socio-economic divide, is largely correlated to what is contained in the book. Regarding this, the scholar argues that the immediate effect of capitalism which divided the dark and the white race, continues to be manifest in the contemporary society, and is most likely to continue to the next generation.
The same pattern of thought is echoed by (Sullivan, 4), arguing that the rate at which the gap between the white and the dark race continues to soar due to a deliberate attempt by the former to continue their domination of the later. This domination scheme has been designed to ensure that members of the dark race are distanced from making any meaningful achievements in the socio-political and economic spheres of the society. As such, the socio-political spheres of the society, and the influence and power they carry, to remain at the dispensation of the white race. In furthering the argument, the scholar asserts that this kind of domination scheme is bound to be problematic due resistance from the dark race, as it is currently starting to happen in its various forms such as black lives matter and countless others.
- Du, B. W. E. B., British Library., & Adam Matthew Digital. (2012). African roots of war. Place of publication not identified: publisher not identified.
- Leiman, Melvin. The political economy of racism. Haymarket Books, 2010.
- Sullivan, Shannon. Good white people: The problem with middle-class white anti-racism. Suny Press, 2014.