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ERIC Number: EJ1026736
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0305-4985
Booker T. Washington's Audacious Vocationalist Philosophy
Lewis, Theodore
Oxford Review of Education, v40 n2 p189-205 2014
Booker T. Washington was born a slave in the American South, rising remarkably in the period after slavery to become a leader of his race. His advocacy of appeasement with the Southern white establishment incurred the ire of his black peers, given the withdrawal of the franchise from ex-slaves in southern states after a brief period of positive social reforms in the years immediately following the end of the civil war, and the widespread violence meted out to blacks at the time. Equally controversial was his advocacy of vocational education for ex-slaves, a pursuit that became his life's work at Tuskegee Institute, Alabama, the school he founded. Antagonists, especially W.E.B. Du Bois, accused Washington of offering vocational education in lieu of liberal education which they felt could be the basis of a new class of blacks who could be leaders and professionals. In this paper I examine Washington's vocationalist philosophy viewing it as misunderstood in his time. I show his belief in the liberal prospects of the subject to be an early forerunner of a new movement to reform the subject in keeping with a global shift in the conception of skill to reflect a new knowledge economy.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Postsecondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A