Master of Arts (MA)
“Booker T. Washington and the Historians” analyzes the past century of scholarly writings on Booker T. Washington and seeks to describe the major paradigms used to explain his life and work. Between 1915 and 2010 four major paradigms emerged. The hagiographic paradigm, which offered an uncritical and triumphal account, dominated Washington scholarship from 1915 to 1950. In the 1950s the critical paradigm became widely accepted among historians; Washington was viewed as a compromiser with white supremacists and Northern industrialists. In the 1990s and 2000s the educational paradigm, which focused on Washington’s pedagogy and educational achievements, developed as an alternative to the critical paradigm. In the 2000s, the contextual paradigm challenged the critical paradigm, presenting Washington’s activities in the context of the virulent white supremacy of his era. Historians writing within a particular paradigm shared common assumptions about race relations, economics, and education. When these views shifted, new paradigms materialized.
Document Availability at the Time of Submission
Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.
Zeringue, Joshua Thomas, "Booker T. Washington and the Historians: How Changing Views on Race Relations, Economics, and Education Shaped Washington Historiography, 1915-2010" (2015). LSU Master's Theses. 1154.