Edward Franklin Frazier was one of the premier Black academics of his era, blazing several trails in the course of his career. Dr. Frazier was a sociologist who examined the endurance of African-American families from slavery to the 20th Century.
Frazier was born September 24, 1894 in Baltimore, Maryland. He attended Howard University on a scholarship, graduating with honors and aligning with the NAACP and other groups. Frazier attended graduate school at Massachusetts’ Clark University, and earned his Ph.D From the University of Chicago in 1931. It was his exit thesis, “The Negro Family In The United States,” that gave Frazier’s work in sociology more recognition when it was released as a book.
Frazier left his greatest marks at Howard University after a stint teaching at Fisk University. He became the chair of Howard’s sociology department in 1943 and in 1948, he became the first Black presidents of the American Sociological Association.
During his tenure at Howard University, Frazier published the controversial and notable work, “Black Bourgeoisie,” which continued the sociologist’s work breaking down Black America’s attempts to move towards the middle class in a climate that was less than welcoming.
In total, Frazier released a dozen books that have all been considered important works.
Frazier passed in 1962. Howard University named its social work research center after the famed sociologist.
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