The Public Interest

Black excellence — the case of Dunbar High School

Thomas Sowell

Spring 1974

SOCIAL pathology has held an enduring fascination for researchers, and nowhere more so than in the study of black Americans. Isolated “successes” or “heroes” receive occasional attention, but large-scale or institutionalized progress ,and excellence seem almost to be shunned, except for passing references to the “middle-class” end results. With all the voluminous outpourings on black educational pathology, there has been an almost total neglect of one of the most remarkable black educational success stories: Dunbar High School.

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