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Alice Walker is a Pulitzer Prize-winning, African-American novelist and poet most famous for authoring The Color Purple.
While at Spelman College, Alice Walker turned down a scholarship to study abroad in Paris in order to go to Mississippi to pursue civil rights equality.
Author Alice Walker began writing early in life. When an injury to her left eye afforded her the chance to go to College, Walker began to work towards her goal of becoming a professional writer.
African-American author and Harlem Renaissance figure Zora Neale Hurston studied anthropology and incorporated folklore and themes of racial heritage into her work.
Langston Hughes was the leading voice of the Harlem Renaissance, whose poetry showcased the dignity and beauty in ordinary black life. The hours he spent in Harlem clubs affected his work, making him one of the innovators of Jazz Poetry.
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Like the novel, the movie was a critical success, receiving 11 Academy Award nominations. Walker explored her own feelings about the film in her 1996 work, The Same River Twice: Honoring the Difficult. In 2005, The Color Purple became a Broadway musical.
Walker incorporated characters and their relations from The Color Purple into two of her other novels: The Temple of My Familiar (1989) and Possessing the Secret of Joy (1992),
which earned great critical praise and caused some controversy for its exploration of the practice of female genital mutilation.
Walker has proved time and time again to be a versatile writer. In 2004, she published Now Is the Time to Open Your Heart. Two years later, in 2006, she published a collection of essays, We Are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For: Light in a Time of Darkness, and the well-received picture book There Is a Flower at the Tip of My Nose Smelling Me.
Continuing her work as a political activist, Walker also wrote about her experiences with the group Women for Women International in 2010's Overcoming Speechlessness: A Poet Encounters the Horror in Rwanda, Eastern Congo and Palestine/Israel. She published another poetry collection, Hard Times Require Furious Dancing, that same year.
After more than four decades as a writer, Alice Walker shows no signs of slowing down. In 2012, she released The Chicken Chronicles; in this latest memoir, she ruminates on caring for her flock of chickens. Following the release of The Chicken Chronicles, she began working on The Cushion in the Road, a collection of mediations on a variety of subjects slated to be published in 2013.
Walker married activist Melvyn Leventhal in 1967. The couple had one daughter, Rebecca Walker, before divorcing in 1976.
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They are the famous African-American writers who have fearlessly examined cultural stigmas, provided intimate life details, presented new ideas and created remarkable fiction through literary works. For their prophetic genius, these men and women have received Pulitzer Prizes, NAACP awards and even Nobel Prizes, among other honors. Our list of prominent African-American authors includes Toni Morrison, who has detailed the lives of black characters who struggle with identity amidst racism and hostility; Langston Hughes, a founder of the Harlem Renaissance; and Maya Angelou, who has eloquently chronicled various eras of her life through her autobiographies.
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