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Author: Imani Perry

Paperback: 242 pages

Publisher: Beacon Press

Copyright: 2018

Language: English

Looking for Lorraine: The Radiant and Radical Life of Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry, who died at thirty-four, was by all accounts a force of nature.

Although best-known for her work A Raisin in the Sun, her short life was full of extraordinary experiences and achievements, and she had an unflinching commitment to social justice, which brought her under FBI surveillance when she was barely in her twenties.

While her close friends and contemporaries, like James Baldwin and Nina Simone, have been rightly celebrated, her story has been diminished and relegated to one work—until now.

In 2018, Hansberry will get the recognition she deserves with the PBS American Masters documentary “Lorraine Hansberry: Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart” and Imani Perry’s multi-dimensional, illuminating biography, Looking for Lorraine.

After the success of A Raisin in the Sun, Hansberry used her prominence in myriad ways: challenging President Kennedy and his brother to take bolder stances on Civil Rights, supporting African anti-colonial leaders, and confronting the romantic racism of the Beat poets and Village hipsters.

Though she married a man, she identified as lesbian and, risking censure and the prospect of being outed, joined one of the nation’s first lesbian organizations. Hansberry associated with many activists, writers, and musicians, including Malcolm X, Langston Hughes, Duke Ellington, Paul Robeson, W.E.B. Du Bois, among others.

Looking for Lorraine is a powerful insight into Hansberry’s extraordinary life—a life that was tragically cut far too short.

Author Bio :

 

Imani Perry is the Hughes-Rogers Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University, where she also teaches in the Programs in Law and Public Affairs, and Gender and Sexuality Studies. Perry holds a BA from Yale and a PhD in American Studies and law degree from Harvard. She is the author of Prophets of the Hood: Politics and Poetics in Hip Hop and More Beautiful and More Terrible: The Embrace and Transcendence of Racial Inequality in the United States.

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