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William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (1868–1963) was an African American sociologist, philosopher, historian, and activist whose work greatly influenced education in the United States. His philosophy of education is inseparable from his conceptions of the intersection of race and culture and from his view of humanity as a synergy of dissimilar cultures in a dynamic relationship of mutual benefit and interdependence. Although his philosophy of education is often perceived as captured in the “Talented Tenth” concept (the view that higher education should develop the potential of the most able Black students), that idea is only a phase in his educational thought and a particular reaction to the assaults on Black higher education at the turn of the 20th century. His overarching philosophy of education was ...

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