Talk:W. E. B. Du Bois

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photograph[edit]

Why is the photo not showing? SusunW (talk) 14:52, 18 August 2015 (UTC)

It seems ok now. Wikiain (talk) 23:00, 23 August 2015 (UTC)

References / Articles[edit]

New reference: "Inter-Racial Implications of the Ethiopian Crisis. A Negro View" in Foreign Affairs, vol. 14, nº 1, october 1935, ps. 82-92.Linspiration (talk) 08:36, 25 August 2015 (UTC)linspiration

Pronunciation of "Du Bois"[edit]

The pronunciation is incorrect. In Du Bois' own words, the name is supposed to end with an "s" sound rather than a "z" sound. He pronounced his own name as "Due Boyss, with the accent on the last syllable" in a letter to the Chicago Sunday Evening Club, Jan. 20, 1939, cited in David Levering Lewis p.11. https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20071216180519AABATNE — Preceding unsigned comment added by 144.174.180.207 (talk) 16:33, 19 January 2016 (UTC)

The article says his name is pronounced /dˈbɔɪz/ doo-BOYZ, which is how I think most people pronounce it—it's certainly the way I've heard most people pronouce it.
The problem is that it isn't 100% clear how Du Bois pronounced his name. According to this book's "Note on Pronunciation", Du Bois said it was pronounced "Due Boys". According to this book, cited in your Yahoo link above, Du Boys said it was pronounced "Due Boyss".
Frankly, I would continue to go with the most common English pronunciation—"Due Boys"—over the way Du Bois may or may not have pronounced the name. — Malik Shabazz Talk/Stalk 04:45, 20 January 2016 (UTC)

Status as first "scientific sociologist"[edit]

The lede of the article asserts that Du Bois was "wrote the first scientific treatise in the field of sociology". This argument, which has been advanced by Aldon Morris, is contentious even with regards to American sociology, where some would name Albion Small as a predecessor. However, globally, it is not contentious that Quetelet was an earlier, scientifically based, sociologist. So this sentence needs to be moderated, ie. "According to some, Du Bois wrote the first scientific treatise" or some such. Cheers. 89.23.241.204 (talk) 21:07, 16 February 2016 (UTC)

I can't see the source cited in the article, but this 1983 paper says

Nevertheless, the pioneering studies of African cultures and Afro-American realities and history initiated by W.E.B. DuBois from 1894 until 1915 stand not only as the first studies of black people on a firm scientific basis altogether- whether classified among the social or historical sciences - but they also represent the earliest ethnographies of Afro-America as well as a major contribution to the earliest corpus of social scientific literature from the United States.

which pointedly avoids the claim the article makes. Therefore fulfilling the request. FourViolas (talk) 23:06, 16 February 2016 (UTC)
The original source (page 165 of W. E. B. Du Bois: An Encyclopedia, edited by Mary Young and Gerald Horne) says:
Recognized for its thoroughness yet largely ignored for its social commentary at the time of its publication, The Philadelphia Negro stands as a classic in both (urban) sociology and African American studies because it was the first scientific study of the Negro and the first scientific sociological study in the United States (Wilson x).
The last bit in parentheses is a reference to:
Wilson, Walter, ed. The Selected Writings of W. E. B. Du Bois. New York: New American Library, 1970.
I think the change to the fourth paragraph of the lead was appropriate, but the original source supports what the article said in the "Atlanta University" section: The Philadelphia Negro "was the first scientific sociological study in the U.S. and the first scientific study of African Americans." — Malik Shabazz Talk/Stalk 04:26, 17 February 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for sharing the quote. I agree that Young & Horne supports the status quo ante, but the intro of this sympathetic 2016 paper makes it clear that this position is contrary to "everything I learned as a PhD student in sociology...about the history of sociology" at a prestigious university—that is, contemporary academic consensus. On the other hand, this Aldon Morris seems to make a convincing and notable case against this consensus. It seems like WP:BALANCE is the way to go: either in the text or in a footnote, note that disagreement exists among contemporary historians of sociology about whether Du Bois was the first or merely a pioneering scientific American sociologist. FourViolas (talk) 05:25, 17 February 2016 (UTC)
Not being a sociologist or a historian of sociology, I'm out of my depth here, but based on the underappreciation of Du Bois's Black Reconstruction in America, it wouldn't surprise me to learn that he has been "whitewashed" out of the history of sociology just as he was erased from American historiography for most of the 20th century. I agree that we have to report what the majority of reliable sources say, but we can quote them in the footnotes. — Malik Shabazz Talk/Stalk 02:41, 18 February 2016 (UTC)
I haven't read the book (Morris' The Scholar Denied), but my understanding is that the argument isn't that he is the first scientific sociologist or even that his work was first, but that he is the founding scientific sociologist. Articles about the book seem interested in calling him the first, but I think there is a difference. It should be possible to find prior works (Florence Kelly or even Atlanta school contemporary, Kelly Miller, might present nearby examples), but Du Bois, in his influencing of Weber, etc, is foundational in a way that those contemporaries were not.Smmurphy(Talk) 03:24, 18 February 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for clearing that up.The footnote quotes are good, and I think it might be worthwhile to get a sentence about what Morris' book says (with appropriate nuance) and how it's being received into the article, if we could do so while avoiding WP:Recentism. Here are the sources which have cited it so far. FourViolas (talk) 13:37, 18 February 2016 (UTC)

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