By George Kent

ISBN-10: 0813108276

ISBN-13: 9780813108278

This is often the 1st full-scale biography of Gwendolyn Brooks, considered one of America's significant poets. George E. Kent, an established pal and literary affiliate of the poet in Chicago, used to be given specific entry to Brooks' early notebooks, which she stored from the age of 7. Kent additionally interviewed Brooks, her mom, and different relations in Chicago and in different places. He scoured documents and correspondence together with her publishers, editors, and agent. He participated within the poet's literary firms and in her large circle of literary and family members associates. The examine unearths intimate acquaintance with the Harlem Renaissance, with the Chicago literary scene and its top figures from the thirties on, with historic advancements in black tradition and awareness, and with the numerous figures and actions that inspired the poet's lifestyles and artwork. It areas Brooks' paintings within the context of the civil rights stream, the black arts flow, and black nationalism. Gwendolyn Brooks gained the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1950 for Annie Allen and is this present day well known as one of many nation's best poets, but her paintings has bought lower than its due from mainstream critics. Kent's authoritative booklet has been one step in correcting that forget.

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Additional info for A Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

Example text

Gwen.. " The autograph album has its share of forget.. me.. not notes, too. " Her brother, Raymond: "Remember B / But most of all / Remember me. " Thelma Owens ("The It Girl") advised her not to worry, since "the worst is yet to come. " In another autograph book, from Willard School, Gwendolyn, her mother, and some friends sound a sententious note, others speak of other matters: Gwendolyn: "It is my duty to be faithful to my school. Not only is the real point of loyalty in the statement but the principle of TRUE LOVE involved.

Margy's head is in a whirl. Margy is a brilliant girl. [February 13, 1934] Published in the Englewood High School newspaper, the piece was a great success. Gwendolyn also wrote a mock lament that perhaps wasn't altogether mock regarding her difficulties with translating Virgil-"To Publius Ver, gilius Maro" (February 26, 1934). Oh, Virgil, dust and ashes in thy grave, Wherever that grave sepulchered may be, Forgive me this small speech, wherein I rave That thou didst ever live to harrass me. Oh, not that I do not appreciate The mild, concordant beauty of your linesBut I am puzzled by them: I translate, And every word seems but a set of signs.

The "Myself" realization was valuable in the midst of, at best, a seemingly indifferent universe. If it did not confer the grace of salvation nor the protection of powerful armor, it could still be summoned up for effecting truces with less confident moods. The truth is, Gwendolyn would not feel that it quite made up for a universe without love. The 1935-36 period is the one in which the surviving poems on love most abound. In her imagination, in response to inward yearnings, she became love's avatar.

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A Life of Gwendolyn Brooks by George Kent


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