Sherman J. Alexie, Jr. was born in October 1966. A Spokane/Coeur d'Alene Indian, he grew up on the Spokane Indian Reservation in Wellpinit, WA, about 50 miles northwest of Spokane. Born hydrocephalic (water on the brain), Alexie underwent brain operation at the age of six. He survived the surgery,
For any literary teenager in the '60s, reading Kerouac's "On the Road" was a must. But immediately following that came Hermann Hesse's study of the Buddha's early life, "Siddhartha." It comes as no surprise, for Hesse was one of the major literary influences on the Beat generation ("Siddhartha" was
Known to refer to herself on occasion as "Zora, Queen of the Niggerati," Zora Neale Hurston cut a provocative figure during the Harlem Renaissance, both in her person and in her writing. As folklorist, teacher, anthropologist, and author, Hurston was a champion of black heritage. She visited Haiti an
All writers struggle with the weight of moral responsibility, even if they profess to create an amoral art. Few writers, however, have carried this burden through the confluence of political and cultural rivers in the way Chinua Achebe has.
Achebe came of age in Africa's largest country, Nigeria,