W. E. B. Du Bois’s Data Portraits

The W.E.B. Du Bois Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Whitney Battle-Baptiste


“As visually arresting as it is informative.”—The Boston Globe

“Du Bois’s bold colors and geometric shapes were decades ahead of modernist graphic design in America.”—Fast Company’s Co.Design

W.E.B. Du Bois’s Data Portraits is the first complete publication of W.E.B. Du Bois’s groundbreaking charts, graphs, and maps presented at the 1900 Paris Exposition.

Famed sociologist, writer, and Black rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois fundamentally changed the representation of Black Americans with his exhibition of data visualizations at the 1900 Paris Exposition. Beautiful in design and powerful in content, these data portraits make visible a wide spectrum of African American culture, from advances in education to the lingering effects of slavery. They convey a literal and figurative representation of what he famously referred to as “the color line,” collected here in full color for the first time.

A landmark collection for social history, graphic design, and data science.

• Data display, visualizations, and infographics far ahead of their time
• Colorful graphs and charts are mesmerizing pieces of art in their own right
• A valuable companion to W.E. B. Du Bois’s The Souls of Black Folk
• Includes contributions from Aldon Morris, Silas Munro, and Mabel O. Wilson

W.E.B. Du Bois’s Data Portraits is an informative and provocative history, data, and graphic design book that continues to resonate with audiences today.

Creator Bio

Whitney Battle-Baptiste is the director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Center at University of Massachusetts Amherst and an associate professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is the author of Black Feminist Archaeology.

Britt Rusert is an assistant professor in the W. E. B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies at University of Massachusetts Amherst and author of Fugitive Science: Empiricism and Freedom in Early African American Culture.

Price £21.99
Format Hardback
Publication Date 23 October 2018
Pages 144
Height 8.25in
Width 6in
ISBN-13 9781616897062