Top of page

Biography Gwendolyn Brooks

U.S. Consultant in Poetry, 1985-1986

Gwendolyn Brooks, U.S. Consultant in Poetry, 1985-1986.

Gwendolyn Brooks was born in Topeka, Kansas, in 1917. She was the author of more than 20 poetry collections, including A Street in Bronzeville (1945); Annie Allen (1949), which won the Pulitzer Prize; and The Bean Eaters (1960). She also published several books of prose, including the novella Maud Martha (1953). Brooks received fellowships from the Academy of American Poets and the Guggenheim Foundation, and was the recipient of the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, the Frost Medal, the Shelley Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, and the National Medal of Arts. She served as the Poet Laureate of Illinois from 1968-2000 and Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 1985-1986. In 1988, she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame. Brooks taught creative writing at Columbia College Chicago, Northeastern Illinois University, Chicago State University, Elmhurst College, Columbia University, Clay College of New York, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She died in 2000.

Audio Recordings with Gwendolyn Brooks

Selected Works at the Library of Congress