The "nadir of American race relations" was the period in the history of the Southern United States from the end of Reconstruction in 1877 through the early 20th century. During this period racism was at its worse than any other period after the Civil War. In this period, African Americans lost many civil rights made during Reconstruction. Anti-black violence, lynchings, segregation, legal racial discrimination, and expressions of white supremacy increased. Two African American leaders named Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. Du Bois had views/ visions on how to react and solve the revolving issue.
According to the book America a Narrative History by George Brown Tindall, “Booker T. Washington was one of the foremost black educator in the nation. He argued that blacks should not focus on fighting racial segregation. Instead, they should first establish an economic base for their advancement before striving for social equality.” Washington wanted to build a strong prosperous black community, while instating civil rights could wait. The article The Debate between W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T.…show more content… Washington’s philosophy was W.E.B. Du Bois; an African American leader of those who criticized Washington. In 1897, Du Bois started to publicly assault Washington’s strategy for improving life for African Americans. According to the book America a Narrative History by George Brown Tindall, Du Bois called Washington’s 1895 speech “the Atlanta Compromise” and said “he would not surrender the leadership of this race to cowards.” The article The Debate between W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington states Du Bois felt “Washington's strategy would serve only to perpetuate white oppression. Du Bois advocated political action and a civil rights agenda (he helped found the NAACP). In addition, he argued that social change could be accomplished by developing the small group of college-educated blacks he called "the Talented