Who Was W. E. B. DuBois?

W. E. B. DuBois, who was mentioned favorably several times during the celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr., sponsored by Redeemer Presbyterian Church, was a black man, born in 1868. Among other activities, he showed a deep attachment to communist and socialist causes. For example, in 1926, after visiting the USSR, he praised the achievements of the Bolshevik Revolution. In 1948, he became vice-chairman of the Council of African Affairs, described by the U. S. Attorney General as "subversive." In 1949, he was the only American to attend the All-Union Conference of Peace Proponents in Moscow. In 1950, he helped organize and was elected chairman of the Peace Information Center. In 1953, he eulogized Stalin in a publication. In 1958, he travelled to the USSR and Eastern Europe, and received an honorary Doctor of Economics from an East German university. That same year, he urged Africans to reject Western capital and to accept aid from the Soviet Union and Red China. In 1959, he met with Nikita Khruschev. He later spent two months in Red China, made a broadcast over Radio Beijing, and met with Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai. Also that year, he was awarded an International Lenin Prize. In 1961, just prior to emigrating to Ghana (where he eventually became a citizen), he applied for membership in the Communist Party, U.S.A. He died in Ghana in 1963. [This information comes from W. E. B. DuBois, Writings (New York: The Library of America, 1986).]