The educator, orator, and thinker Booker T. Washington (1856 – 1915) has long been considered one of the most important figures in the post-Civil War era. But, as Diana Schaub explains, his thought and actions often have been misunderstood. In this Conversation, Schaub, a leading interpreter of American political thought, attempts to recover Washington’s ideas by setting them against the political situation of the time. When we do so, Schaub argues, we confront a profound and original thinker whose ideas on education, race, culture, and politics remain relevant today.

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