Double Consciousness- Blog 5

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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5 responses to “Double Consciousness- Blog 5

  1. I agree, we must definitely educate ourselves so we don’t fall under this double consciousness. No race should be defined by the way they dress or act. Everyone is born into one and therefore acting a way shouldn’t define you as being “black” or being “white”. Dubois’s “double consciousness” divides an individual’s identity and let’s them see both sides from different perspectives.

  2. #5. I certainly, agree that “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.” It is an essential part of an individual’s growth to become successful in life. To continue to advance and progress, an individual must have a constant want and need to be educated.Education is the process in which one, is able to develop and grow intellectually, socially, psychologically, and morally.

  3. I think for some of us “minority” it is very difficult to avoid this double consciousness, we are so driven by what we see and what the media feeds us, that when we don’t fall under the categories we “should” we become self-conscious and feel unworthy. Others feel trapped in what they think they “should” be and what they feel they are and the idea of this double consciousness arises. I have been there many times, it has been by building on education that i have been able to overcome this feeling and have been able to look past all of it.

  4. Yes! indeed education is the only thing that can help young people not let the labels and stereotypes pull them down. There is a need to teach children from a very young age that they dictate their own future not what others said. Hopefully one day this theory won’t be present in our society.

  5. Awesome post! This is one of the questions that I have been grappling with for a while..Is double consciousness about race or is it more based on economic factors. When we say “minority” what do we mean? I like to use Fanon’s refined concept of Double consciousness which encompasses all colonized people: All colonized people experience double consciousness.

    While I do believe that education is important, education not in the traditional sense, but the learning that takes place outside of the classroom is extremely important. Education about emotional intelligence, emotional hygiene, all art forms, these are all extremely important to develop our views of the world as we see it. As with double consciousnesses there is a split in the way one is perceived and how one sees themselves in society. Could using art forms to assert their place in the world would help people experiencing double consciousness to recognize and reconcile their experience? Kind of like what Langston Hughes and many other artists and musicians did during the Harlem Renaissance. Do we see a similar renaissance eras rising in different communities around the world?

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