Stationed in the borderlands: A study of Black World War II soldiers in combat arms
by Barksdale, Sarah Ayako, M.A., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2009 , 69 pages; AAT 1463808
"This paper examines the experiences of African American soldiers overseas in World War II. The Second World War has been described as a turning point in the black freedom struggle, and the soldiers who served in the military played a role in the pivotal changes taking place throughout the 1940s. Their time spent overseas and in the military was significant because it often provided soldiers with a new worldview or sense of consciousness. Using W.E.B. DuBois' idea of double consciousness, I analyze the changes these individuals experienced overseas, their encounters with new cultures, and generally new ways of looking at the world. In order to supplement this analysis and demonstrate that this sense of consciousness was prevalent at the time, I also use the work of contemporary black writers such as Gwendolyn Brooks and Melvin Tolson. Overall, I hope to reveal the changes these men underwent throughout the war."