A prolific author, editor, and wide-ranging intellectual, W. E. B. Du Bois made his living by the pen. As founding editor of the Crisis, the magazine of the NAACP, and in dozens of other magazines and newspapers, Du Bois addressed the major social and political issues of the twentieth century, waging a relentless assault upon racial and social injustice in America and imperialism in all its forms.
The following essays were selected to provide an introduction to Du Bois’ writing and to the fundamental issues confronting the United States, the reality, the potential, and the obstacles. Together, they demonstrate, as Du Bois wrote, that the problem of the twentieth century was indeed the problem of the color line.