Dubois uses the term double consciousness to describe an individual whose identity is divided into several characters. When he uses the term it comes from how African Americans viewing themselves, individually and as a group through the eyes of the society they live in. This term can apply to any group who is a “minority.” We understand the dominant groups view, your role and the relationship between the two. Whereas the dominant group can believe the world always operates under the terms in which he/she views it. A white person who looks at a black person and says you are acting white but the black person is just being himself, how are blacks supposed to act? Society has created these stereotypes that there is a certain way that different races should dress, act, talk, look, etc. In the state of double consciousness the person often compares himself to others who he feels look down at him. This is what creates the element of conflict with the black American (or any minority) and their identity as an American citizen. Double consciousness is what makes us aware of our differences from one another. Education is key to gaining consciousness; we must educate ourselves so we don’t fall as part of this double conciseness theory and start believing we are all those negative views and stereotypes labeled upon us.
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