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Gwendolyn Brooks: Online Resources

Compiled by Peter Armenti, Digital Reference Specialist
Gwendolyn Brooks, Consultant in Poetry, 1985-86
Gwendolyn Brooks,
Consultant in Poetry, 1985-86
Image ID: LC-USZ62-107993
Prints and Photographs Online Catalog

On May 6, 1985, Librarian of Congress Daniel J. Boorstin announced the appointment of Gwendolyn Brooks as the 29th Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress. Brooks, the first African American author to win the Pulitzer Prize, is perhaps best known for her lyrical portraits of African American urban life.

Brooks served two terms as poet laureate, giving her final reading on May 5, 1986. This guide compiles links to resources on Gwendolyn Brooks throughout the Library of Congress Web site, as well as links to external Web sites that include features on her life or selections of her work. To suggest additions to this guide, please contact the Digital Reference Section.


Library of Congress Web Site
   •Articles and Features
   •Audio Recordings
   •Video Recordings
   •Print Resources
External Web Sites
   •Biographical Information, Poetry
   •Interviews, Articles, and Conversations
   •Audio Recordings
   •Videoo Recordings
   •Lesson Plans, Classroom Instruction
   •Gwendolyn Brooks in the News

Library of Congress Web Site

(Some links open PDF files. Download a free version of the Adobe Reader.)

Articles and Features

"Happy Birthday, Maxine Kumin and Gwendolyn Brooks!"
From the Catbird Seat blog, June 5, 2015

"Gwendolyn Brooks Is Named as Next Library Poetry Consultant" (PDF, 662 KB)
Library of Congress Information Bulletin, May 20, 1985

Living Legends Award Citation, April 2000

Poetry Broadside: "We Real Cool"

Audio Recordings

"The Day of the Gwendolyn: A Lecture" (47:59)
May 5, 1986

"Gwendolyn Brooks Reading From Her Poetry" (1 hour, 17 minutes)
September 30, 1985

Video Recordings

"Literary Birthday Celebration: Gwendolyn Brooks" (60 minutes)
June 7, 2012

Print Resources

Works by Gwendolyn Brooks in the Library of Congress online catalog can be found under the following author heading:

Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000

Works about Gwendolyn Brooks can be found in the Library of Congress online catalog under the following subject headings:

Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Bibliography.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Correspondence.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Criticism and interpretation.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Influence.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Interviews.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Juvenile literature.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Literary collections.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000. Maud Martha.
Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000--Political and social views.

Link disclaimerExternal Web Sites

(Some links open RealAudio files. Download a free version of RealPlayer software.)

Biographical Information, Poetry

Academy of American Poets
Biography of Gwendolyn Brooks, samples of her poetry, and links to related Web sites.

Finding Aid to the Gwendolyn Brooks Papers, 1917-2000, bulk 1950-1989
The Bancroft Library's finding aid includes a biography of Brooks and bibliography of primary and secondary sources.

Biography of Gwendolyn Brooks reprinted from Gale's Contemporary Heroes and Heroines, Book III.

Illinois Poet Laureate Web Site
Biography of Brooks and selected poems.

Pearson Education, Inc.
Biography of Brooks that supplements X.J. Kennedy's and Dana Gioia's print anthology Literature.

Poetry Foundation
Biography of Gwendolyn Brooks, bibliography of her writings, and more than 20 poems.

Interviews, Articles, and Conversations

"Gwendolyn Brooks: The Oracle of Bronzeville"
Chicago Defender, June 13, 2018

"On Gwendolyn Brooks' Birthday, A Statue of the Powerful Poet will be Unveiled on the South Side"
Chicago Tribune, June 6, 2018

"‘To find kisses pressed in books’: One Hundred Years of Gwendolyn Brooks"
Poetry Foundation, April 19, 2017

"How Gwendolyn Brooks’ Poetry is Connecting Emmett Till with the Violence in Chicago Today"
PBS NewHour, March 7, 2017

"Hundreds of Poets Honor Chicago-bred Gwendolyn Brooks with New Book"
Chicago Tribuine, March 7, 2017

"In Praise of Poets: Gwendolyn Brooks and Nikki Giovanni"
Daily Kos, June 7, 2015

"Gwendolyn Brooks: Poet who Called Out to Black People Everywhere"
The Guardian, December 9, 2000.

"An Evening with Gwendolyn Brooks"
Interviewed by B. Denise Hawkins. Reprinted from Black Issues in Higher Education 11, no. 18 (November 3, 1994): 16, 20-1.

"A Conversation with Gwendolyn Brooks"
Interviewed by Steven Cape, The Artful Dodge, 1979.

Gwendolyn Brooks on BNET
A collection of critical and popular articles on Gwendolyn Brooks.

Audio Recordings

Radio Programs

Remembering The Great Poet Gwendolyn Brooks At 100 (7:01)
Morning Edition, NPR, May 29, 2017

Gwendolyn Brooks Captures Chicago 'Cool' (05:22)
All Things Considered, NPR, April 15, 2007

Gwendolyn Brooks' Indispensable Maud Martha (03:40)
You Must Read This, NPR, October 10, 2006

Gwendolyn Brooks (06:38)
Weekend Edition Saturday, NPR, December 9, 2000

Gwendolyn Brooks Dies (03:51)
Morning Edition, NPR, December 4, 2000

Gwendolyn Brooks (04:10)
All Things Considered, NPR, December 4, 2000

The Power of African American Women (30:07)
Recording from the Pacifica Radio Archives, 1985

Other Audio

The Poetry Foundation
Includes downloadable audio and podcasts by and about Gwendolyn Brooks

Brooks Reads "We Real Cool"
Academy of American Poets

Video Recordings

Literature and Life: The Givens Collection
This PBS site includes a video of Professor Sandy Adell dicussing Gwendolyn Brooks and Brooks reading some of her works

"We Real Cool"
Read and discussed as part of the Favorite Poem Project

"An Interview with Gwendolyn Brooks" (28:24)
The Writing Life, Howard County Poetry and Literature Society, 1986


(Some links open PDF files. Download a free version of the Adobe Reader.)

Bibliography - Miller F. Whittaker Library, South Carolina State University (PDF, 288 KB)
Extensive bibliography of works by and about Brooks created in 2004

Collection of critical and popular articles on Gwendolyn Brooks
Critical information on Brooks from Gale's Contemporary Literary Criticism series

Lemon Hound
A critical article by Marilyn Hacker, "The Sonnet as a Wild Woman's Blues: On Gwendolyn Brooks' 'The Rites for Cousin Vit' " and five questions for Marilyn Hacker

Modern American Poetry
Criticism of individual poems, interviews with Brooks, and information about her life and career

VG: Voices from the Gaps
Biography and references to scholarly criticism on Brooks' work

Lesson Plans, Classroom Instruction

Gwendolyn Brooks: Poet, Novelist, Wife, Mother, and Teacher
Lesson Plan from TeacherLINK Web site

Heath Online Instructor's Guide
Web page that helps teachers introduce Brooks' work into the classroom. Includes a selected bibliography

The Impact of a Poem's Line Breaks: Enjambment and Gwendolyn Brooks’ “We Real Cool”
Lesson plan from EDSITEment Web site

Many Years Later: Responding to Gwendolyn Brooks’ “We Real Cool”
Lesson plan from ReadWriteThink Web site

Gwendolyn Brooks in the News

Google News search on Gwendolyn Brooks

Blog entries on Gwendolyn Brooks, via Google Blog Search

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  March 16, 2022
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