Rag Radio: Aldon Morris, Author of Groundbreaking Work About African-American Sociologist W.E.B. Du Bois

The severe racism of the day denied Du Bois credit for the founding of modern scientific sociology.

Aldon D. Morris

Thorne Dreyer’s guest, sociologist Aldon Morris, discusses his important new book about historian, author, Pan-Africanist, and civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois, whose pioneering work laid the groundwork for modern sociology.

Aldon D. Morris is Leon Forrest Professor of Sociology and African American Studies at Northwestern University and the author of the award-winning Origins of the Civil Rights Movement: Black Communities Organizing for Change.

Morris’ newest work is The Scholar Denied: W.E.B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology, a groundbreaking book that helps rewrite the history of sociology in acknowledging the primacy of W. E. B. Du Bois’ work in the founding of modern scientific sociology. This book, which is the result of a decade of research, writing, and revision, exposes the economic and political factors that marginalized the contributions of Du Bois and instead gave the credit to Robert E. Park, who worked with the conservative black leader Booker T. Washington “to render Du Bois invisible.” Du Bois was also a historian, civil rights activist, and the author of The Souls of Black Folk, a seminal work in African-American literature.

Morris also discusses how the severe institutional and cultural racism of the day marginalized the scholarship of many other African-American academics and innovators.

Rag Radio is produced in the studios of KOOP 91.7-FM, an all-volunteer, cooperatively-run community radio station in Austin, Texas, in association with The Rag Blog and the New Journalism Project, a Texas 501(c)(3) nonprofit. The host and producer of Rag Radio, Thorne Dreyer, is a prominent Austin-based activist and writer who was a pioneer of the ’60s underground press movement. The show’s engineer and co-producer is Tracey Schulz and the staff photographer is Roger Baker. The syndicated show is broadcast (and streamed) live Fridays, 2-3 p.m. (Central) on KOOP in Austin, and is later rebroadcast and streamed on WFTE-FM in Mt. Cobb and Scranton, PA., on Houston Pacifica’s KPFT HD-3 90.1-FM, and by KKRN, 88.5-FM in Round Mountain, CA — and is a featured podcast at VT. All Rag Radio podcasts can be found at the Internet Archive. Contact: [email protected]


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