6 Pages

“What Is Africa to Me?”

In this intensely personal essay from his 1940 autobiography Dusk of Dawn , Du Bois asks the question of what Africa is to him as an African American. He relates that the common tie he holds with other people of African descent, as well as other oppressed minorities, is the experience of discrimination, and more specifically, the “social heritage of slavery.” The essay concludes with a detailed description of his visiting Africa for the first time in 1924 as a special representative from the President of the United States to the Liberian government.