Journalist, writer; born in Ithaca, N.Y. He grew up in Henning, Tenn., studied at Elizabeth City (N.C.) Teachers' College (1937-39), and became a journalist while serving in the U.S. Coast Guard (1939-59). Retiring from the service, he established himself in Los Angeles as a free-lance writer, distinguished by his Playboy interviews. He first gained some national attention as the collaborator-editor of The Autobiography of Malcolm X (1965). His highly acclaimed work, Roots: The Saga of an American Family (1976, Pulitzer Prize) turned out to be a mixture of fact and fiction but was definitely based on his African-American roots; he had spent 12 years researching his ancestry and claimed to trace it to a Kunte Kinte, brought as a slave to America from Gambia in 1767. The book was the basis of a phenomenally successful television miniseries (1977), for which he received a special Pulitzer Prize and the Spingarn Medal. A sequel, Queen (1993), also appeared as a book and television miniseries.
Above bio from Cambridge Encyclopedia Database. Copyright
(c) 1997, AND Reference Data Ltd., Oxford, UK. and The Cambridge Dictionary of American
Biography, edited by J S. Bowmen. Copyright (c) 1995 Cambridge University Press.
(Four-Disc -30th Anniversary Edition) (1977)
Click to order via Amazon
Directors: Marvin J.
Chomsky, John Erman
Plot Synopsis: Based on Alex Haley's best-selling novel about his African ancestors, Roots followed several generations in the lives of a slave family. The saga began with Kunta Kinte (LeVar Burton), a West African youth captured by slave raiders and shipped to America in the 1700s. The family's saga is depicted up until the Civil War where Kunte Kinte's grandson gained emancipation. Roots made its greatest impression on the ratings and widespread popularity it garnered. On average, 130 million - almost half the country at the time - saw all or part of the series.
Actors: Ben Vereen, Brad Davis,
Cicely Tyson, Ed Asner, Georg Brown, John Stamos, Le Var Burton, Leslie
Uggams, Lloyd Bridges, Louis Gossett, Jr., Lynne Moody, Madge Sinclair, Maya
Angelou, Robert Reed, Sandy Duncan
Hardcover: 688 pages
This "bold . . . extraordinary . . . blockbuster . . ." (Newsweek) begins with a birth in 1750, in an African village; it ends seven generations later at the Arkansas funeral of a black professor whose children are a teacher, a Navy architect, an assistant director of the U.S. Information Agency, and an author.
From The Publisher:
|Autobiography of Malcolm X: With the Assistance of Alex
Click to order via Amazon
Mass Market Paperback: 496 pages
A major resurgence in Malcolm X interest has led to the publication of this special commemorative edition of the black leader's autobiography. With a new epilogue written by Alex Haley just priot to his death, this book stands as the definitive statement of a movement and a man whose work was never completed, but whose message is timeless. (Ballantine Books)
From the Publisher
An established classic of modern America, The Autobiography of Malcolm X was hailed by the New York Times as "Extraordinary. A brilliant, painful, important book." Still extraordinary, still important, this electrifying story has transformed Malcom X's life into his legacy. The strength of his words, the power of his ideas continue to resonate more than a generation after they first appeared."
Haley's Queen: The Story of an American Family
A sequel to Roots, Queen is a history
of Haley's father's family. Part of this work appeared as a TV series.
Haley -- The Master Storyteller Whose `Roots' Ran Very Deep