Poets Essayists Novelists

While their names and styles have changed over the years, they have been the voices of their generations and helped inspire the generations that followed them.

What follows is a list of prominent Black authors who have left a mark on the literary world forever.

Acclaimed American poet, author and activist Maya Angelou was born in St. Often referred to as a spokesman for African Americans and women through her many works, her gift of words connected all people who were “committed to raising the moral standards of living in the United States.” was published in 1969 and became the first in seven autobiographies of Angelou’s life.

A prolific poet, her words often depict Black beauty, the strength of women and the human spirit, and the demand for social justice.

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Writing for adults and children, Angelou was one of several African American women at the time who explored the Black female autobiographical tradition.Known for his social criticism and incendiary style, Baraka explored the anger of Black Americans and advocated scientific socialism.Often confrontational and designed to awaken audiences to the political needs of Black Americans, Baraka was a prominent voice in American literature.(And you can still bring a friend for moral support.) There's always so much going on.As well as all the educational and social events offered by the Collective, there are also book launches, readings and workshops offered by other community organizations.Enrol in one of our classes or workshops to jump-start your writing in the company of other creative people.Develop your skills as a poet, essayist, or story-teller.Speaking with passion and depth about the Black struggle in America, it has become an American classic.Baldwin would continue to write novels, poetry and essays with a refreshingly unique perspective for the rest of his life.In 1956, raised the issues of race and homosexuality at a time when it was taboo.And during the Civil Rights Movement, he published three of his most important collections of essays, “Notes of a Native Son” (1955), “Nobody Knows My Name” (1961) and “Born in 1934, poet, writer and political activist Amiri Baraka used his writing as a weapon against racism and became one of the most widely published African American writers.

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