E. Ethelbert Miller asks: " In an essay on the role of black intellectuals in the 21st century you briefly talk about the importance of Du Bois. Can you expand your comments about him? I just finished reading Dusk of Dawn. I find few people have read it. It seems as if Du Bois is reduced down to one book---The Souls of Black Folk. What works by Du Bois do you often return to for inspiration?
“If you tonight suddenly should become full-fledged Americans; if your color faded, or the color line here in Chicago was miraculously forgotten; suppose, too, you became at the same time rich and powerful;---what is it that you would want? What would you immediately seek? Would you buy the most powerful of motor cars and outrace Cook County? Would you buy the most elaborate estate on the North Shore? Would you be a Rotarian or a Lion or a What-not of the very last degree? Would you wear the most striking clothes, give the richest dinners and buy the longest press notices?