> . 15, 4, 2016 > : Aldon D. Morris, The Scholar Denied: W. E. B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology (Oakland: University of California Press, 2015)


: Aldon D. Morris, The Scholar Denied: W. E. B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology (Oakland: University of California Press, 2015)


09 2017

Today, W. E. B. Du Bois (1868–1963) is considered to be a classic scholar of American sociology. However, he has been overlooked by generations of sociologists in the USA. Aldon Morris, the author of The Scholar Denied: W. E. B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology, recollects how he talked about Du Bois with his graduate school mentor, Lewis Coser: “Coser, always graceful and gentle when it came to students, softly replied, ‘Du Bois was not a master of sociological thought’” (p. xv). Du Bois used to be one of the “forgotten” sociological geniuses. Thus, the situation in Russian sociology is not surprising: references to Du Bois are rare in syllabi; his works have not been translated into Russian. Some of the existing mentions are erroneous. For instance, Batygin wrote1 that race research in the US was initially not university-based and refers to The Philadelphia Negro that, in fact, was commissioned by the University of Pennsylvania and written while Du Bois was working there as a researcher. This neglect in Russian sociology is understandable, given that even in American sociology, Du Bois is primarily seen as a sociologist of race, a less popular field in Russia. Morris wrote a book to challenge the limited understanding of Du Bois’s heritage. He states that Du Bois was more than a sociologist of race; he was one of the classic scholars of American sociology and sociology in general. Moreover, there was nothing accidental in the “forgetfulness” of American sociology—it was deliberate and political.