William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (1868–1963) is the greatest of African American intellectuals—a sociologist, historian, novelist, and activist whose astounding career spanned the nation's history from Reconstruction to the Civil Rights Movement. Born in Massachusetts and educated at Fisk, Harvard, and the University of Berlin, Du Bois penned his epochal masterpiece, The Souls of Black Folk, in 1903. It remains his most studied and popular work; its insights into Negro life at the turn of the 20th century still ring true.
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