Americans could improve their condition during the Jim Crow era!
Students will read Booker T. Washington’s speech “Atlanta Exposition Address" and an excerpt of W.E.B. DuBois’ essay from The Souls of Black Folk in response to Washington’s speech.
Students need to discover how African Americans were able to overcome during a period of oppression and discrimination
Many individuals shared ideas of how this improvement could be obtained such as Washington and DuBois.
Both the speech and the essay discuss issues such as segregation, equality, and education for African Americans.
Many of my students become a bit angry upon reading Washington’s ideas—their disagreement is ok and is evidence of their comprehension!
However, I remind students that Washington’s upbringing heavily impacts his way of thinking.
Students strongly agree with DuBois’ response, almost in relief!
The lesson includes an 8 slide PowerPoint, which introduces Washington and DuBois and discussion questions students answer to further analyze Washington and DuBois’ ideas.
I use this lesson to supplement the play, A Raisin in the Sun as Washington and DuBois are both alluded to.
This lesson would be a wonderful addition to a Harlem Renaissance unit or a unit on A Raisin in the Sun.
Lastly, while this lesson is meant primarily for an upper-level eleventh grade English class, it can be modified for a standard class as well.