Politics / History / Economy

Victor David Du Bois


Tribute to A Stellar Scholar
by Tierno S. Bah


From 1962 to 1967 Victor David Du Bois had a particular interest in the nations that once comprised French West Africa. Under a Ford Foundation fellowship he did the field work for a doctoral dissertation on Guinea, where he came into close contact with government, business, and labor leaders, scholars, and others connected with the Guinean political scene. Following undergraduate studies in anthropology, he shifted to the field of political science and received the Ph.D. degree from Princeton University in 1962. He has lectured and written widely on African subjects.


American Universities Field Staff Reports (1952-1967)
West Africa Series. Volume VIII, 1965-1966

The American Universities Field Staff, organized in 1951 as a nonprofit member ship corporation, functions as an academic foreign service. Its founders, the executive heads of a group of educational institutions, envisaged a program that would contribute to an understanding of the nature and dynamics of foreign cultures, especially in the developing countries. Staff members live in foreign areas with which they are thoroughly familiar to report firsthand on significant developments. Periodically, they return to the United States, where they serve as visiting faculty on campuses of the sponsoring colleges and universities.
AUFS Reports are, first of all, historical records of contemporaneous developments, written by men professionally committed to a continuing study of foreign areas. They provide a reference resource of a kind unduplicated by any other organization working in foreign studies.
While making a record today for tomorrow's historians, they cut through the necessary but restricting fences of the academic disciplines in their aim to observe total societies. The reader of an AUFS Report gets from it a sense that the writer has been solidly responsible yet cautious in presenting their findings. His/her conclusions are likely to be exploratory, tentative, suggestive of further investigation. He/she attempts to suggest hypotheses to academic colleagues, long-range interpretations to all readers, promising areas of research to students, and speculative interpretations to informed laymen. The result is that the AUFS Reports, written primarily for college faculty and students,also are read wherever there is a serious interest in foreign affairs.
In the early years, the Reports were distributed only to the member academic institutions. The usefulness of the Reports as authoritative source material on political, economic, and social trends in foreign countries brought such favorable comment that in 1954 a subscription service was instituted.
The Reports are not published to accord with an editorial policy and do not represent the views of the corporate membership of the American Universities Field Staff. Inc. Responsibility for accuracy of facts and for opinions expressed in the Reports rests solely with the individual writers.

Teg C. Grondahl
Director of Publications

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