Institution Affiliations Part One
UPFrom Slavery by Booker T. Washington
Thebook “Up from Slavery” is talking about the life of Booker T.Washington, from the time of childhood, his professional career untilhis death. The writer of the book uses the first person, complimentswith newspaper editorials and letters’ excerpts to express theintended information. The essay explains the legacy of Booker T.Washington as a leader of the blacks in the years following the CivilWar until he met his death.
BookerWashington was born on a plantation as a slave in Virginia nearRoanoke. He had a very high demand for education, and when there wasfreedom, he learned how to read. He spent his childhood working in acoal mine and salt furnace and also attending classes whenever hecould manage. The time Hampton Institute was opened for all theraces it marked a new beginning for Booker. He attended school whileworking for Mrs. Viola Ruffner. His determination and hard workyielded fruits, as he was employed to work as a janitor and at thesame given a chance to enroll in school.
Whileat Hampton Institute, Booker became the best friend with his lifetimementor, General Armstrong, whom he acknowledges on the idea andaspects of Industrial Education. Washington also learned on how toeat with a napkin and a tablecloth, use of bed sheets and brushinghis teeth regularly. He worked extraordinary hard both during the dayand summers to cater for his basic needs such as books and clothingand to settle his board fees while the tuition fee was paid by thedonors.
Aftergraduation, Booker became a teacher in Malden, his hometown. Heimparted something worthwhile that changed the life of many blackswho decided to join Hampton Institute. After teaching for a while, heenrolled in Washington D.C for eight months, where he realized thatthe learners were not motivated and determined to acquire knowledgeand skills in industrial work. He found out that the black people inthe town were not willing to work due to laziness, hoping for easymeans of survival.
Atthe end of his academic pursuit, Booker was called to Hampton to workas a tutor. He stayed with the American Indians men and wasrecommended by Armstrong to take charge of a newly opened school forpeople of color in Tuskegee, and he accepted the job. He spent a lotof time moving around all the regions to find the beliefs, customs,values, needs and aspirations of the people and realized they were somany than he thought.
TheTuskegee Institute started with only one teacher and thirty students,and the facilities were only an abandoned church and an old slum. Theteacher, Olivia Davidson who was later married to Washington togetherwith him worked very hard and raised enough capital to buy a leftplantation nearest to town. Washington and Olivia had the samevision, goal and objective to teach beyond the books, they includedaspects of diet, table manners, proper hygiene and industrials skillsand knowledge that will assist the learners to develop their futurecareers. The financial assistance from General Marshall in the formof loans, Hampton Institute’s Treasurer, they bought the land thelearners assisted in repair and improvisation of the old buildings.The learners also cleared, tilled the land and grew crops under themanagement and leadership of Booker himself.
LaterDavidson and Washington traveled the north to seek for financialassistance through fundraising to put up new structures. The learnersprovided labor supply by digging the foundations, made furniture andbricks and this enhanced good race relations. Washington emphasizedthat students should acquire sufficient knowledge and skills toindustrial work to enable them to work at their trade despite theobjections from their parents and student themselves. Washingtonincreased the efforts of fundraising to cater for boarding departmentrequirements and increasing number of student’s enrollment.
Themovement to the north to seek for financial assistance to facilitateoperations of the school marked the starting point of Washington’smotivational speaking. He was invited to give lectures at Madison,National Educational Association, Atlanta where he spoke to mixedrace and south and north audience during the year 1895 which markedthe International Exposition and Atlanta states opening. Heemphasized that the southern black people should work with theirhands and generates enough income to satisfy the unlimited needswithout necessary moving to other regions, and the southern whitepeople should relate well regarding trade with the blacks asneighbors to meet the needs and desires instead of the foreignimmigrants. He also added that the blacks should earn theirprivileges by being aggressive and assertive in their work instead ofairing their grievances of social equality. Washington was receivedpositively by white people, and this raised his demand as amotivational speaker while some of the black were less positive as hedidn’t address vividly for their rights.
BookerWashington provided his services as a public speaker at notable andimportant events, including the celebration of peace in Chicago andBoston dedication of Shaw Robert’s moment following the end ofAmerican-Spanish war. Tuskegee at that period was full established inhis absence, but he was being informed pertaining the proceedings anddevelopment through the use of daily reports. The school had 1500students training in 38 trades, 200 teachers and had hundred modernfacilities and buildings. Following his contributions to the field ofeducation and his public motivational speaking in the institutionsand public receptions, he was awarded an honorary degree from theHarvard University.
In1893, Booker married the lady principal, Miss Margaret James Murray.She led the meeting of mothers in Tuskegee, greatly supported schoolwork and plantation work outskirts of town. The baneberries of theseactivities were the members of the society and provided importantlessons to the students who were interested in doing this type ofwork. She also managed and organized the club for women and otherorganizations meant to empower women.
In1899, Washington Booker and his wife visited Holland, France, Englandand Belgium, a tour that was arranged and organized by their friendsto meet very important people and the queen of England. At this timeTuskegee grew rapidly from a broken-down slum to sixty-six buildings,two thousand and three hundred acres of land and one hundred and teninstructors and officers. This earned it a lot of respect to theextent that it was visited by President McKinley. In Holland, theywere greatly impressed by agricultural activities and the importanceof Holstein cows. In Belgium and France, he had a conversation withimportant dignitaries. He was impressed by the pleasure of Frenchlove and excitement, which had great influence than that of the BlackAmericans.
InLondon, Washington and his wife received a lot of invitations to givespeeches and attend public and social events. He met important peoplesuch as members of parliament, Author Mark Taiwan, and the Americanambassador. He addressed people in Royal College for the Blindfinally, he had tea with Susan B. Anthony and Queen Victoria. He wasfurther impressed the way the servants showed respect to theirmasters.
Upfrom slavery provided great impact on the lives of the people. Heinspired various prominent personalities to support Tuskegee such asJewish and photograph entrepreneurs. Washington was able to win thehearts of these great entrepreneurs due to his powerful, convincingand leadership qualities. This helped him in advancing the blackpeoples’ to higher education when he was the member of the board atHoward University and fighting for their civil rights.
In1915, Washington started suffering from high blood pressure andserious kidney problem. He was taken hospital in London, but thedoctors would not manage much. He decided to go back home. On 14November 1915 at the age of 59 and Washington died and was buried inthe campus cemetery.
Inconclusion, Washington believed that great progress and achievementcould be achieved and realized even at unfavorable and hostilepolitical atmosphere if only the people could produce goods andservices others want, educate themselves and work hard. He recognizedthat a person achieves his/ her objectives, there is a closesubstitute for goodwill, honesty, and responsibility, the characterdetermines destiny.
TheRelevance of Booker T. Washington’s Ideas about Education for Today
Educationis something worthwhile, knowledge and skills that are acquiredthrough the process of teaching and learning to make an individualbecome an important person in the society. Washington accomplished alot in the education field by developing the following theories:
Theoryof Value: The things Washington valued evolved and changed as hegrew. He realized that apart from freedom the black Americans wantededucation to enable them to satisfy their varied needs. This promptedfor the value of education for industrial work to enable them to havethe ability in achieving their goals. In Hampton, he learned thevalue of hard work, use of tablecloth when eating, toothbrush, use ofnapkin and hygiene (Booker).
Theoryof knowledge: Washington advocated for the education that encompassesknowledge, psychomotor and affective domains. Washington’s systemof education was designed to meet the needs of his society. Henoticed that black Americans needed industrial education to supplythem with knowledge and skills to enable them to improve theireconomic welfare such as making of furniture and bricks in Tuskegee.Industrials also provided skills and knowledge on trade which enabledthe learners to develop entrepreneurial skills. This led to thedevelopment of vocational training.
Theoryof Human Nature: He understood that human nature was about doingsomething to succeed economically or at a personal level. His mainaim was to ensure his people improved their living standards. Thiscontributed to development of disciplines such as psychology andphilosophy to understand the nature of human beings better
Theoryof Learning: Washington’s education system was developed anddesigned and resembled into a process that he went through in theacquisition of education. He believed that people need knowledge andskills to acquire the foundation in industrial work, education, andproperty. He emphasized of the customs, values, beliefs andaspirations of people in his society to ensure that theAfrican-American people acquired the basic knowledge and skills toenable them to eradicate and alleviate poverty. He advocated thateducation was meant to make learners self-reliant, creative andinnovative hence leading to the development of entrepreneurialculture.
Theoryof Transmission: Washington’s education system emphasized the useof project method in imparting knowledge and skills to the learners.His curriculum was founded by personal experience that involvesteaching and learning from known to unknown. In Tuskegee, thestudents were given a chance to learn real things instead of bookcontent alone. This made learning more practical than theoretical.The teaching and learning in Tuskegee were expository than heuristicas the students were taught using activity method that facilitatedthe solving economics problem in the society.
Theoryof Opportunity: Washington wished to live like the whites when he wasa child because there were no limits of slavery on them. He wasdetermined to excel and succeed in life despite the vast obstacles totriumph over. These finally led to supply and demand of educationthat’s studied today as the economics of education.
Theoryof Consensus: Washington’s public speaking in the Cotton States andAtlanta, his main aim was to enhance friendship between the whitesand the African-Americans and bring cooperation by fightingsegregation behind the scenes.
Inconclusion, Booker T. Washington was a greatest African-Americanleader, reformer, and educator of his time. He preached racialsolidarity and inclusiveness, accommodation and asperity of self–reliance, and help. He overemphasized that the blacks shouldaccept segregation and concentrated on improving their economicwelfare by working extraordinarily hard to acquire property. Heembraced education in industrial work, business enterprises, farmingskills and knowledge, crafts and thrift. He said this would enablethe blacks to be respected by the whites and enhance integration.
Booker, T. Washington, Up From Slavery. Independent publishing Company, 2015.
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