“Liberation is not the private province of any one particular group”Audre Lorde
Audre Lorde (1934-1992) was born in New York to parents of West Indian heritage. She passed away in 1992, a victim of breast cancer. Her battle with the disease, which was chronicled in works like The Cancer Journals, was just one of many struggles she had to deal with in life. Audre Lorde was a black homosexual female in a world dominated by white heterosexual males. She fought for justice on each of these minority fronts. Her writings protest against the swallowing of black American culture by an indifferent white population, against the perpetuation of sex discrimination, and against the neglect of the movement for gay rights. Her poetry, however, is not entirely political in content. It is extremely romantic in nature and is described by Joan Martin as ringing with, “passion, sincerity, perception, and depth of feeling.” (Read the rest of Lorde’s biography at Emory University)
Lorde wrote eighteen books of essays and poetry, for which she won numerous awards, including the American Book Award for A Burst of Light. She received a Masters of Library Science from Columbia University. After working several years as a librarian, she became a professor of English, first at John Jay College and later at Hunter College.
Lorde was a recipient of many distinguished honors and awards, including honorary doctorates from Hunter, Oberlin, and Haverford Colleges, and was named New York State Poet Laureate (1991-1993).