Rhetorical Analysis On The Souls Of Black Folk

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The Souls of Black Folk and Our Spiritual Strivings William Edward Burghardt Du Bois was born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts on February 23, 1868. He became the first African American to earn his PhD from Harvard University in 1896. In 1903, W.E.B Du Bois wrote a book called The Souls of Black Folk, which addresses the struggles of being black in America. Six years later, Du Bois and other intellectuals founded the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. The Souls of Black Folk writer poses an interesting question to his audience in the first chapter, “How does it feel to be a problem?” (Du Bois 8). Du Bois recalls an incident in his childhood where a girl refused his card because of his race. In this specific …show more content…
He wanted his white audience to experience life behind the veil. To convey his message effectively, he uses memories from his childhood to establish an emotional connection with his audience. The memory from his first racial encounter alters his life and makes him realize the existence of “the veil”. Du Bois approaches the issue of racism in an intelligent and well-spoken manner using different forms of rhetoric throughout the first chapter. He adds more depth to his argument by adding historical allusions and imagery in the text. “The shadow of a mighty Negro past flits through the tale of Ethiopia the Shadowy and of Egypt the Sphinx” (Du Bois 9). His intent for utilizing this allusion is to make the audience recollect the renowned history of African Americans which has been ignored or forgotten over the years. Du Bois states, “Through history, the powers of single black men flash here and there like falling stars, and die sometimes before the world has rightly gauged their brightness” (Du Bois 9). He uses imagery to compare African American men to a once in a lifetime occurrence. This quote further stresses how the hard work and dedication of the single black men has been overlooked or