The Souls of Black Folk

The Pursuit of Happiness and The Veil College

W.E.B. DuBois and Zora Neal Hurston, undoubtedly, had two distinct ways of writing, one through an analytical form of storytelling with interwoven fragments of moralistic and ethical themes and one through short fiction that exemplified the distinctiveness of black culture and dialects. Though these styles are diverse, they both harkened on the condition of blackness and each presented poignant narratives that existed to both study and challenge the position of black people as a whole. The Gilded Six-Bits by Zora Neal Hurston and The Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. DuBois both put black culture and black intellectualism into the conversation surrounding political and socioeconomic inequalities. Additionally, these works forced blacks and whites alike to assess and reevaluate ideas surrounding identity and what it means to take ownership of one’s own culture and exist in contentment. Joe, Otis T. Slemmons, and the W.E.B. DuBois’ son all represent the idea that whiteness, through a black cultural lens, is something one puts on and despite attempts to escape The Veil there is an ever present barrier that prevents blacks from reaching the illusion of happiness.

The transformation from contentedness to materialistic desire for wealth...

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