Term Paper On W.E.B Dubois or Pan-Africanism

ASSIGNMENT OPTION #1: W.E.B. Dubois and DOUBLE CONSCIOUSNESS
Even though such contemporary modes of analysis as intersectionality have in some ways supplanted W.E.B. DuBois’ concept of double consciousness as articulated in his 1903 The Souls of Black Folk, the concept remains a central feature of the practice of the many disciplines of African American and Africana studies. Key to its longevity is the complexity of its dualism, the fact that it accurately captures multiple aspects of identity formation among African Americans in the legacy and the presence of anti-black racism. The concept frames well the sense of inner division, the internalization of external forces, the debilitation such internalization entails, the distinctive political and cultural perspectives that it produces, the ways in which power informs these implications of self-definition, and the difficult potential liberation available in “true self-consciousness,” whatever that is. Each of these features has its limitations as well as its power.
-Dr. Keith Leonard

You are to complete an essay addressing the salient characteristics of double consciousness using “Of Our Spiritual Strivings” and at least one other reading from the syllabus. You should identify one or two aspects of double consciousness that you would like to explore and analyze them through close analysis of the arguments of DuBois and the other writer(s) on the syllabus you choose to discuss. Develop a strong argument that demonstrates how your analysis of the writings illuminates some conclusion you have come to about some feature(s) of double consciousness.

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To succeed in this assignment, you must develop your own argument using the texts at hand and substantiate that argument with analyzed quotations from those texts. In other words, do not only analyze what the other writers are saying alone. Also, do not merely compare and contrast what two or three other writers are saying. Rather, synthesize the ideas from this analysis to assert your own distinctive thesis. As you might imagine, synthesis is a key skill in academia in general, and certainly crucial for multidisciplinary analysis. Comprehend some specific aspect of what the writers are arguing, put those aspects in conversation, and synthesize some conclusion of your own from that conversation. Move beyond merely agreeing or disagreeing. Assert the most important implication(s) of your agreement or disagreement. Your thesis should be an assertion of the conclusion you have come to from your analysis. What claim have you derived from your engagement with writings you have chosen? -Dr. Keith Leonard

You are free to develop your own approach to this critical analysis, but below are some suggestions:
How does the duality explored in double-consciousness constitute an important survival skill for African-Americans? What are the limits of this position? (ROBERTS)
How does the “veil” discussed by Dubois, function as both a place of danger and safety for African Americans (ROBERTS)
What does DuBois mean by “second sight”? (SEEING ONESELF THROUGH THE EYES OF THE OTHER) What makes it valuable?(LEONARD)
What is true self-consciousness? What can make it manifest?(LEONARD)
To what extent does DuBois imagine a resolution to the problem of double consciousness? What constitutes that resolution? What makes it possible? (LEONARD)
How much is double consciousness a description only of how black men experience the world?(LEONARD)
Using Dubois’ concept of double-consciousness, how might African-American women function in a state of “triple-consciousness”? (ROBERTS)
What is the role of Africa in the Negro’s attempt toward a true selfconsciousness? (ROBERTS)

ASSIGNMENT OPTION #2: PAN-AFRICANISM

While postcolonialism, transnational feminism, globalism and other geopolitical/cultural studies theories continue to shape 21st century cultural, political, and social discourse Pan-Africanism remains central to understanding not only of the history of the African diaspora, but to imagine a future as well. The idea remains malleable in part because of the legacy of slavery and colonialism, but due to the enduring hope of the possibilities of Africa (as a continent and idea) and its people. Pan-Africanism situates African American identity within a continuum that extends beyond the trauma of the Middle Passage and offers a refuge from anti-blackness. The concept also offers the possibility of kinship among a group of forced immigrants whose experiences helped shape the Atlantic world, while maintaining the sanctity of a “homeland”. Pan-Africanism also elevates the cultural production of African people including the arts, sacred practices, language by challenging whiteness as normative which allows for self-definition. Such liberating aspects of Pan-Africanism, like double-consciousness, have limitations as well.

You are to complete an essay addressing the salient characteristics of Pan-Africanism using any class readings you deem relevant. You should identify one or two aspects of Pan-Africanism that you would like to explore and analyze them through close analysis of the arguments of Garvey, Fanon, Wa’Thiongo, Biko and the other writer(s) on the syllabus you choose to discuss. Develop a strong argument that demonstrates how your analysis of the writings illuminates some conclusion you have come to about some feature(s) of Pan-Africanism.
Again, to succeed in this assignment, you must develop your own argument using the texts at hand and substantiate that argument with analyzed quotations from those texts. In other words, do not only analyze what the other writers are saying alone. Also, do not merely compare and contrast what two or three other writers are saying. Rather, synthesize the ideas from this analysis to assert your own distinctive thesis. As you might imagine, synthesis is a key skill in academia in general, and certainly crucial for multidisciplinary analysis. Comprehend some specific aspect of what the writers are arguing, put those aspects in conversation, and synthesize some conclusion of your own from that conversation. Move beyond merely agreeing or disagreeing. Assert the most important implication(s) of your agreement or disagreement. Your thesis should be an assertion of the conclusion you have come to from your analysis. What claim have you derived from your engagement with writings you have chosen? -Dr. Keith Leonard

You are free to develop your own approach to this critical analysis, but below are some suggestions:
Africa for Africans? How does Garvey’s idea of repatriation serve as an important liberating concept for African Americans?
How does Garvey’s grassroots Pan-Africanism expand the early 20th century idea of “racial uplift” espoused by Dubois, Wells, etc.?
Compare and contrast the role of Africa in the philosophy of Marcus Garvey, Frantz Fanon, Steve Biko, (or others)?
What is true self-consciousness, and how can it be found in the pursuit of Pan-Africanism? (YOU SHOULD RE-READ DUBOIS)
How might Pan-Africanism resolve the problem of double-consciousness?

Your paper must have:
A minimum five pages/ A maximum of seven pages
You must use MLA style
A title directly relevant to your argument (NOT “Critical Analysis Essay” or “Analyzing Double Consciousness” or anything obvious like that). That title should be centered at the top of the first page, below the heading. NO title pages. LEONARD)
A focused, interesting, and engaging introduction that clarifies for the reader the issue you will discuss, the idea you will explain, or the problem you will solve, and a thesis statement that asserts the conclusion that you have come to. (LEONARD)
Detailed, careful, and fully developed analysis of the details of the sources you chose. (LEONARD/ROBERTS)
Well-organized paragraphs with strong transition / topic sentences and which offer specific evidence analyzed well in defense of the thesis (LEONARD/ROBERTS)
You must use specific quotes and evidence to support your statements.
Clear, grammatically correct prose (ROBERTS)
A bibliography following the conventions of the style you are using.
I WILL NOT ACCEPT A LATE MIDTERM ASSIGNMENT PERIOD!!! BE WARNED…

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