1-20 of 25 results  for:

  • Performing Arts x
  • Fiction Writer x
Clear all

Article

Leslie Sanders

was born 7 January 1953 in Guayaguayare, Trinidad and Tobago. Information on her parents is unavailable. She attended Naparima Girls’ High School in San Fernando, graduating in 1970. The same year, she immigrated to Canada for further schooling, graduating from the University of Toronto with a B.A. in 1975, and from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education with an M.A. in 1976. She lives in Toronto and, since 2004, has been a research professor in the Department of English and Theatre Studies, University of Guelph. Brand is the author of ten books of poetry; four novels; a collection of short stories; four substantial works of nonfiction, including the resonant and influential meditation on being in diaspora, A Map to the Door of No Return: Notes to Belonging (2001 other uncollected essays and four documentary films She has won many awards for her work ...

Article

SaFiya D. Hoskins

playwright, screenwriter, novelist, filmmaker, educator, was born Kathleen Conwell in Jersey City, New Jersey, daughter of Frank and Loretta Conwell. Her father was employed as a mortician prior to being appointed as the principal of a New Jersey school. Conwell attended Skidmore College in Sarasota Springs, New York, where in 1963 she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy and Religion. Upon graduating from college she became active with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee's (SNCC) initiative to advance voter registration in the South, where African Americans had been historically discouraged from voting. Conwell attended graduate school in Paris, France, where in 1966 she earned a Master of Arts degree in French Literature and Cinema through the Middlebury College program at the Sorbonne.

Upon completing her graduate studies in Paris Conwell returned to New York where she had attended college and promptly began working ...

Article

Steven R. Carter

Born Kathleen Conwell in Jersey City, she was the daughter of Frank and Loretta Conwell. Her father, who had worked as a mortician, became the principal of a high school now named after him and the first black New Jersey state legislator. In 1963, after receiving her BA in philosophy and religion from Skidmore College, Collins worked on black southern voter registration for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. In 1966 she earned an MA in French literature and cinema through the Middle-bury program at Paris's Sorbonne. Joining the editorial and production staff at a New York City Public Broadcasting Service station, Collins worked as a film editor and began writing stories. In 1974, soon after ending her marriage to Douglas Collins, she became a professor of film history and screenwriting at the City College of New York. Adapting Henry H. Roth's fiction for the screen in The ...

Article

Faith Mkwesha-Manyonga

Zimbabwean novelist, scriptwriter, consultant, and film director, was born in 1959 in Mutoko in colonial Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe). At the age of two, she left for England with her parents, who were going for further studies, and started her primary education there. In 1965, when she was six, they returned to Rhodesia, where she completed her primary and secondary education at a mission school in Mutare. In 1977, she returned to England to study medicine at Cambridge University, but feeling lonely and alienated, she returned home after three years, without completing her studies, just before the declaration of national independence.

Back in a newly liberated Zimbabwe she worked for a marketing company as a copy editor and then studied psychology at the University of Zimbabwe She was actively involved in the University of Zimbabwe drama club writing and staging plays Dangarembga worked as a teacher after graduating but ...

Article

Jenny Murray

Algerian writer and filmmaker, was born Fatma Zohra Imalhayène in Cherchell, Algeria, on 30 June 1936 to Tahar Imalhayène and Bahia Sahraoui. Her father was a teacher in the French colonial school in Mouzaïaville in the Mitidja region, and her mother was a descendant of the Berkani tribe. Djebar attended the school where her father taught, and from 1946 to 1953 she studied classics and English at the French secondary school in Blida. In October 1953, after passing the Baccalauréat examination, she enrolled in the Lycée Bugeaud in Algiers for the hypokhâgne, the first year of a preparatory course for entrance examinations to the École Normale Supérieure. Djebar moved to Paris in October 1954 to complete Première Supérieure in literature Greek and Latin at the Lycée Fénelon The following year she was offered a place at the prestigious École Normale Supérieure de Sèvres and from May to ...

Article

Known for her works about women in North Africa’s Islamic societies, Assia Djebar is one of a generation of female writers and directors who provide a view of history in which women have a central role. Primary concerns in her work include voice, memory, and language. Although Arabic was the language of her family, Djebar was educated in French because France, which controlled Algeria at the time, did not allow the teaching of Arabic. Today she writes in French, striving to make the language her own and not that of her country’s colonizers.

Djebar was born Fatima-Zohra Imalayen in Cherchell, a small coastal town west of Algiers, Algeria to a schoolteacher father and a mother who died while Djebar was a child She finished her early studies in Algeria then became the first Algerian student to be admitted to the prestigious Lïécole Normale Supérieure de Sèvres in France ...

Article

Klara Szmánko

poet, novelist, film producer, activist, and radio talk show host, was born in Chicago, Illinois. His father, Sam Greenlee Sr., was a chauffeur, and his mother a singer and dancer. Greenlee, who identifies himself as a second-generation immigrant from the Deep South, has claimed that he made up for his “non-education in Chicago ghetto non-schools at three universities: Wisconsin, Chicago and Thessalonikki, Greece” (Afterword, Blues for an African Princess). Greenlee received his BS degree in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin in 1952. He studied at the University of Chicago between 1954 and 1957 and at the University of Thessalonikki for one year (1963–1964 Greenlee professes fluency in Greek Indonesian and Malay and a much more limited knowledge of Arabic French and Italian the languages he mastered while working as a foreign service officer in Iraq Pakistan Indonesia and Greece ...

Article

Wanda Macon

Sam Greenlee has employed the Black literary tradition to produce such masterpieces as The Spook Who Sat by the Door (1969) and Baghdad Blues (1976). Greenlee was born on 13 July 1930 in the heart of Chicago, Illinois. As a young man he attended the University of Wisconsin, where he received his BS in 1952. Greenlee further studied at the University of Chicago (1954–1957) and the University of Thessaloniki, Greece (1963–1964). His career started as a United States Information Agency Foreign Service Officer in Iraq, Pakistan, Indonesia, and Greece. His military service included time in the U.S. Army Infantry from 1952 to 1954. Greenlee received the London Sunday Times book of the year award in 1969 for The Spook Who Sat by the Door and the Meritorious Service Award from the United States Information Agency He currently resides in Chicago Illinois ...

Article

South African novelist, playwright, poet, painter, sculptor, film producer, and academic, was born on 6 October 1948 in Sterkspruit in the Herschel District of the Eastern Cape, near the border with Lesotho. His father Ashby Peter Solomzi Mda was a schoolteacher, later an attorney, and a founder of the African National Congress Youth League and of the Pan-African Congress; his mother Rose Nompumelelo Mda was a nurse. When Mda was an infant, his parents moved with him to Orlando East and then to Dobsonville in Soweto, where his father taught school.

Mda claims that he became a juvenile delinquent and joined street gangs during his time in Soweto while his father was studying law In hopes of keeping him out of trouble his parents sent him as a teenager to live with his grandparents in Sterkspruit soon after his father joined him to establish a law practice there His father ...

Article

Margaret E. Wright-Cleveland

writer, film producer, and director. Oscar Micheaux was the most prolific African American filmmaker of the twentieth century, having produced thirty-eight films between 1913 and 1948. He also wrote seven novels, including three best sellers. Though Micheaux experienced foreclosures and bankruptcy, ultimately he was financially successful. He worked only for himself, as a homesteader, book publisher, and filmmaker, and marketed his own novels and films broadly. His silent films are more critically respected than his sound films, though his use of light-skinned African American actors and caricature is controversial.

Micheaux was the fifth of eleven children born to the former slaves Bell Willingham Micheaux and Calvin Swan Micheaux in Metropolis, Illinois. He had no formal education beyond high school, working as a Pullman porter before purchasing a relinquished homestead in the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota in 1906 Even though he lost land to ...

Article

Charlene B. Regester

Micheaux, Oscar (02 January 1884–25 March 1951), novelist and motion picture producer, was born near Cairo, Illinois, the son of Calvin Swan Micheaux and Belle Willingham, farmers. This information derives in part from Oscar Micheaux’s death certificate and in part from his semiautobiographical work of fiction, The Conquest. Little is documented on Micheaux’s early years; therefore, The Conquest, which appears to be more fact than fiction, provides a basis for reconstructing this period of his life. Micheaux’s early years, according to this work, were spent in Metropolis, Illinois, where he attended an all-black school and where he helped out on the family farm—work for which he felt ill suited. At age seventeen, Micheaux left home seeking employment. He held a variety of jobs (coal miner, laborer, steel mill worker, bootblack, and Pullman porter), none of which resulted in economic success.

However, according to The Conquest ...

Article

Oscar Micheaux was born near Murphysboro, Illinois, the fifth of thirteen children. He went to Chicago at the age of seventeen, where he worked as a shoeshine boy and Pullman porter. In 1904 he used his savings to buy a homestead in South Dakota on land newly opened to settlement. Micheaux's experiences as an African American settler in the rough-and-tumble environment of the South Dakota frontier provided him with material for several of his most important books and movies.

Micheaux's first creative work was the 1913 novel The Conquest: The Story of a Negro Pioneer. This novel followed the adventures of a self-made black settler caught between love for a white woman and the perceived demands of his racial identity. A similar plot defined Micheaux's longer novel The Homesteader (1917). Micheaux used the proceeds from The Conquest to start a Sioux City business the Western ...

Article

Lisa E. Rivo

filmmaker, writer, and entrepreneur, was born on a farm near Metropolis, Illinois, the fifth of eleven children of the former slaves Calvin Swan Micheaux and Belle Willingham. After leaving home at age sixteen and working in several southern Illinois towns, he moved to Chicago and opened a shoe-shine stand in a white barbershop. Contacts he made there led to a job as a Pullman porter. Train porters were assigned to passengers for the length of their travel, and Micheaux took full advantage of the opportunity to mingle with wealthy whites and watch while they conducted business.

Micheaux fell in love with the Northwest and Great Plains while working the Chicago-to-Portland run, and in 1905 he used his savings to purchase land in southern South Dakota on the newly opened Rosebud Sioux Indian reservation By age twenty five he had amassed five hundred acres and began ...

Article

Oscar Micheaux was the first major African American director to produce feature films with black characters for black audiences. Over a thirty-year period from 1919 to 1948 he wrote, directed, and produced thirty-four pictures. Among these are Body and Soul (1924), a silent film starring Paul Robeson in his first American movie, and The Exile (1931), the first African American talkie made by a black film company. Micheaux was a legendary figure in early African American film, a field that began in earnest after the appearance of D. W. Griffith's controversial Birth of a Nation (1915). The great public outcry over the racism in Griffith's film created an underground movement of black filmmakers intent on presenting a more realistic appraisal of African American life.

Micheaux was born in Illinois and after a short period as a farmer and Pullman car porter turned his ...

Article

Reinhold Misselbeck and Kimberly Juanita Brown

African American photographer, writer, film maker, and composer. Parks was the youngest of 15 children and, after the early death of his mother, he took on responsibilities for himself and his family as a teenager. Parks worked in a number of professions before becoming a self-taught freelance photographer in 1937. After getting his start in fashion photography, he worked as one of the Farm Security Administration’s photographic team (1942–3) and held a similar post with the Office of War Information (1943–5). During this time he produced now iconic pictures such as American Gothic (1942), which features a black cleaner in front of the American flag staring into the camera with mop and broom upturned, as if in salute. Parks was soon hired as a photographer for Life magazine, where he worked from 1948 to 1961 During this period ...

Article

Elizabeth Schul

Gordon Parks's first two publications-Flash Photography (1947) and Camera Portraits: The Techniques and Principles of Documentary Portraiture (1948)-while written primarily for the professional photographer, reveal an aesthetic and a social commitment that structures the astonishing diversity of his subsequent work. Embodying his conviction that the photographer must combine technical intelligence, especially in the use of light, with a sensitive response to people, both works are photographic portfolios representing a cross-section of American lives—rural and urban, wealthy and leisured, poor and laboring.

Frequently identified as a Renaissance man, given the range of his accomplishments and the variety of media he has used, Parks was also the first African American to work for Life, Vogue the Office of War Information and the Farm Security Administration and one of the first African Americans to write direct produce and score a film While the commercial success of his ...

Article

Ann Wilde

photographer, poet, writer, composer, and filmmaker. Born the fifteenth and final child of a farming family in Fort Scott, Kansas, Gordon Roger Alexander Buchanan Parks was born on 30 November 1912 Parks attended a segregated school where he was often stoned beaten and called derogatory names Three of his close friends had been killed because of racial violence and he was distinctly aware of the constant threat that faced him simply because he was African American and lived in the United States Parks s mother died when he was sixteen after which complying with his mother s wishes Parks moved to Minneapolis to live with his sister and brother in law Unwelcome in his brother in law s home Parks spent the winter homeless but managed to finish high school by working odd jobs He believed above all that the difficulty of his experiences ...

Article

Marian Aguiar

Gordon Parks was born in Fort Scott, Kansas, the son of a dirt farmer and the youngest of fifteen children. He left home when he was fifteen, shortly after his mother's death. After an unhappy attempt to move in with a married sister in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Parks ended up spending a frigid winter homeless, an experience that sensitized him to the plight of the poor and that he would draw on in later photography and films. At the time, his hunger and loneliness nearly led him to a life of crime; however, he managed to struggle through high school for a while, working odd jobs herding cattle, carrying bricks, and even touring with a semiprofessional basketball team.

Working as a waiter on the Northern Pacific Railroad, Parks saw magazine photos produced by the Farm Security Administration, a federally funded project that chronicled the Great Depression in rural and ...

Article

Lisa E. Rivo

photographer, filmmaker, author, and composer, was born Gordon Roger Alexander Buchanan Parks in the small prairie town of Fort Scott, Kansas, to Andrew Jackson Parks, a dirt farmer, and Sarah Ross, a maid. Gordon was the youngest of fifteen children, the first five of which, he later discovered, were really half siblings, born to his father and a woman other than his mother. Parks's poor Kansas childhood, and his memories of its unbridled racism, feature prominently in his later work, especially his books “thick with those memories.” The first phase of Parks's life ended with the death of his mother in 1928. “Before the flowers on my mother s grave had wilted Parks remembered my father had me on a train to my sister in Minnesota I ran into some hell there Russell 145 Within a month of his arrival in Minneapolis ...

Article

Tamba M'bayo

Ousmane Sembène (1923–2007) was one of Africa’s most creative film directors. A prolific novelist and storywriter, his achievements as a film director have earned him recognition among his peers and film critics as the “doyen of African cinema.” Writing in French, Sembène explored historical, political, and social themes in his novels; in his films, however, he used Wolof (the most widely spoken language in Senegal). His works for the most part concentrated on the colonial and postcolonial periods in Senegal and other neighboring former French colonies. His films have been directed mostly at a popular audience in his home country, where the majority do not read and write French.

Sembène was born in 1923, in Ziguinchor, in the Casamance region of southern Senegal. He attended a Qur’anic school (as most Muslims in Senegal do) and the School of Ceramics (l’École de Ceramique at Marsassoum where ...