Alice Walker Facts

Alice Walker Facts
Alice Walker is an American novelist most well-known for her novel The Color Purple. She was born Alice Malsenior Tallulah-Kate Walker on February 9, 1944, in Putnam County, Georgia, to Willie Lee Walker and Minnie Tallulah Grant. She was the youngest of 8 children in the family. She was enrolled at East Putnam Consolidated School when she was 4 years old. At the age of 8 Alice became permanently blind in one eye when her brother shot her with a BB gun. Without a car or access to medical help she did not receive treatment. Alice began reading and writing after the injury to her eye. Alice was valedictorian when she graduated from a segregated high school, and enrolled at Spelman College with a full scholarship.
Interesting Alice Walker Facts:
Two years into her education at Spelman College Alice Walker was given a scholarship to Sarah Lawrence College in New York so she transferred there. She graduated in 1965.
While studying in East Africa Alice Walker wrote many of the poems for her first poetry book titled Once. She also wrote poetry for this book while in Sarah Lawrence College during her senior year.
After graduation Alice worked in NYC briefly and then returned south to Mississippi.
Alice Walker was a writer-in-residence from 1968 to 1969 at Jackson State University, as well as at Tougaloo College from 1970 to 1971.
Alice taught at the University of Massachusetts in the fall of 1972 and then became an editor of MS. Magazine.
Alice Walker's second novel titled Meridian was released in 1976. It was based on civil rights movement activists.
In 1982 Alice Walker published her novel The Color Purple. It became a best seller and was adapted into film by Steven Spielberg in 1985.
The Color Purple won Alice Walker the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for fiction.
The film The Color Purple starred Oprah Winfrey and Whoopi Goldberg.
The Color Purple was adapted into a Broadway musical in 2005 and there were a total of 910 performances.
Alice Walker met Martin Luther King Jr. in the early 1960s when she was studying at Spelman College and took part in the March on Washington in 1963. She cites him as her inspiration to become an activist in the Civil Rights Movement.
In 2003 Alice Walker was arrested along with 26 others while protecting outside the White House in an anti-war rally.
Alice Walker and her husband became the first legally married interracial couple living in Mississippi. Her husband Melvyn Rosenman Leventhal is a civil rights lawyer. They were married until 1976 when they divorced. They had one daughter together.
Alice and her husband were threatened by the Ku Klux Klan when they moved to Jackson, Mississippi in 1967.
Alice Walker has won many awards including the National Book Award for Fiction in1983, the Candace Award Arts and Letters in 1982, the O. Henry Award for Kindred Spirits in 1985, honorary degrees, various fellowships, and was inducted into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame in 2001.


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