W.E.B. Du Bois (1868-1963) was a leading African-American sociologist, writer and civil rights activist. Du Bois was educated at top universities, including Harvard, where he earned his master of arts and his doctorate in history. He was one of the founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and editor of its magazine.
W.E.B. Du Bois was born on Feb. 23, 1868, in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. He studied arts, history and economics in three top universities: Fisk University, Harvard University and the University of Berlin. Du Bois married Nina Gomer in 1896 and they had two children.
Mostly renowned as a civil rights activist, Du Bois was a founder and general secretary of the Niagara movement, an African-American protest group of scholars and professionals founded in 1905. In 1909, he was among the founders of the NAACP, which he served from 1910 to 1934 as director of publicity and research, a member of the board of directors and editor of The Crisis, its monthly magazine.
Remembered as a towering intellectual, Du Bois’ scholarly endeavors are still acknowledged in many fields. As a poet, playwright, novelist, essayist, sociologist, historian and journalist, Du Bois wrote 21 books, edited 15 more and published over 100 essays and articles.
In 1961, shortly before his death, Du Bois took up citizenship in Ghana and started to work on the Encyclopedia Africana. He died in Ghana on August 27, 1963, and was given a state funeral.