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Angela Jackson

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Information about Angela Jackson

Profile image of Angela Jackson

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
Occupation(s):
Playwright
Poet

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Orange, Hot Pink
Favorite Food:
Grits, Eggs
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring, Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Africa, Brazil
Favorite Quote:
Usikate Tamaa (Do Not Despair In Swahili)

Birthplace

Born:
7/25/1951
Birth Location:
Greenville, Mississippi

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
Occupation(s):
Playwright
Poet

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Orange, Hot Pink
Favorite Food:
Grits, Eggs
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring, Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Africa, Brazil
Favorite Quote:
Usikate Tamaa (Do Not Despair In Swahili)

Birthplace

Born:
7/25/1951
Birth Location:
Greenville
See how Angela Jackson is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Angela Jackson, poet, playwright and fictionist, was born July 25, 1951, in Greenville, Mississippi. Her father, George Jackson, Sr. and mother, Angeline Robinson Jackson moved to Chicago where Jackson attended St. Anne’s Catholic School. Fascinated with books, Jackson frequented the Kelly Branch Library and admired Chicago’s Gwendolyn Brooks. She graduated from Loretto Academy in 1968 with a pre-med scholarship to Northwestern University. In 1977, Jackson received her B.A. degree from Northwestern University and went on to earn her M.A. degree from the University of Chicago.

At Northwestern University, Jackson joined FMO, the black student union. Influenced by artist Jeff Donaldson and visiting poet Margaret Walker, she was invited by Johnson Publishing’s Black World magazine editor, Hoyt W. Fuller, to join the Organization for Black American Culture (OBAC), where she stayed as a member for twenty years. At OBAC, Fuller mentored young black writers like Haki Madhubuti (Don L. Lee), Carolyn Rodgers, Sterling Plumpp and others. Jackson was praised as a reader and performer on Chicago’s burgeoning black literary scene. First published nationally in Black World in 1971, Jackson’s first book of poetry, Voodoo Love Magic was published by Third World Press in 1974. She won the eighth Conrad Kent Rivers Memorial Award in 1973; the Academy of American Poets Award from Northwestern University in 1974; the Illinois Art Council Creative Writing Fellowship in Fiction in 1979; a National Endowment For the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship in Fiction in 1980; the Hoyt W. Fuller Award for Literary Excellence in 1984; the American Book Award in 1985; the DuSable Museum Writers Seminar Poetry Prize in 1984; Pushcart Prize for Poetry in 1989; ETA Gala Award in 1994; Illinois Authors Literary Heritage Award in 1996; six Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards; five for fiction and one for poetry; The Carl Sandburg Award; Chicago Sun-Times Friends of Literature Book of the Year Award; an Illinois Art Council Creative Writing Fellowship in Playwriting in 2000; and in 2002, the Shelley Memorial Award of the Poetry Society of America.

Jackson’s published poetic works include: The Greenville Club, 1977 (chapbook); Solo in the Boxcar Third Floor E, 1985; The Man with the White Liver, 1987; Dark Legs and Silk Kisses: The Beatitudes of the Spinners, 1993; and All These Roads Be Luminous: Poems New and Selected, 1997, which was nominated for the National Book Award. Her plays include Witness!, 1970; Shango Diaspora: An African American Myth of Womanhood and Love, 1980; and When the Wind Blows, 1984 (better known as the eta production entitled, Comfort Stew). Jackson is working on Treemont Stone, a novel; Lightfoot: The Crystal Stair, a play; her memoir, Apprenticeship in the House of Cowrie Shells; and more poems.

Jackson lives and works in Chicago, Illinois.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Angela Jackson's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Angela Jackson talks about her mother's family background, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Angela Jackson talks about her mother's family background, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Angela Jackson talks about her father's family background, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Angela Jackson talks about her father's family background, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Angela Jackson talks about her father
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Angela Jackson describes how her parents met
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Angela Jackson describes her parents' marriage and her siblings
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson describes her father's experience in the U.S. military and the family's move to Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Angela Jackson describes her earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Angela Jackson describes the sights, sounds, and smells of her childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Angela Jackson recalls her childhood neighborhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Angela Jackson describes her childhood personality and interests
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Angela Jackson describes encountering overt racism in the South
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Angela Jackson describes the ethnic makeup of Greenville, Mississippi
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Angela Jackson talks about her love of school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson talks about writers that influenced her, pt. 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Angela Jackson talks about writers that influenced her, pt. 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Angela Jackson talks about her experience at Loretto Academy High School
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Angela Jackson talks about her writing
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Angela Jackson talks about her extracurricular interests at her experience at Loretto Academy High School
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Angela Jackson talks about her childhood mentors and memories
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Angela Jackson talks about her changing political views in the 1960s
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson talks about her parents' reading habits
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Angela Jackson talks about reactions to Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Angela Jackson talks about Loretto Academy High School in Chicago, Illinois and her decision to attend Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Angela Jackson talks about the politics of black hair
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Angela Jackson reflects on her changing attitude toward Malcolm X
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Angela Jackson talks about her mentors at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Angela Jackson talks about her introduction to the Organization of Black American Culture
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Angela Jackson describes the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC) and related organizations
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson reflects on cultural changes in the late '60s and early '70s and OBAC
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Angela Jackson describes her experience in the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC), pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Angela Jackson describes her experience in the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC), pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Angela Jackson talks about her time at Northwestern University, the burning of OBAC's storefront, and the Communiversity
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Angela Jackson talks about her first published writings and various jobs
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Angela Jackson recalls events in her life which occurred in 1977
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Angela Jackson describes the history and demise of Black World magazine
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson describes Festac 77 in Lagos, Nigeria
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Angela Jackson describes her play "Shango Diaspora," pt. 1
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Angela Jackson describes her play "Shango Diaspora," pt. 2
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Angela Jackson discusses her published poetry
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Angela Jackson discusses her book "Dark Legs and Silk Kisses" and other writings
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Angela Jackson describes her novel "Treemont Stone" and other writings
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Angela Jackson describes an article she wrote on her use of popular culture in her writing
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson talks about her teaching career
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Angela Jackson talks about her future plans and present writing
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Angela Jackson talks about the difference between light and serious fiction
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Angela Jackson talks about the subject matter of her current work
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Angela Jackson describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Angela Jackson reflects on her life
  • Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Angela Jackson reflects on her legacy
  • Tape: 7 Story: 9 - Angela Jackson talks about Ida B. Wells
  • Tape: 7 Story: 10 - Angela Jackson reflects on how she would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 7 Story: 11 - Angela Jackson reads her poem "Faith"
  • Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Angela Jackson narrates her photographs, pt. 1
  • Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Angela Jackson narrates her photographs, pt. 2