Paul Laurence Dunbar


was an African-American poet and an author. He was prolific at writing short stories, novels, librettos, plays, songs essays and poetry. His work was popular with black and white readers of his day, and are celebrated today by scholars and schoolchildren alike. He is accredited as being the first African-American to gain national eminence as a poet.
Born in Dayton. Ohio on June 27, 1872, Dunbar was raised primarily by his mother, Matilda. She worked as a washwoman. Matilda Dunbar devoted her life to raising her son and exposing him to literary works. She learned poetry herself by listening to her slave-master read poetry to his family in the evenings, and she was determined that ...

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On December 13, 1890, Dunbar and an associate, Preston Finley, published the first issue of Dayton Tattler, a black-oriented weekly newspaper. He was chosen president of the "Philomathean Society," a literary organization. (Austin)
Paul Dunbar wanted to study law. He was financially unable to attend college so he took at job as a elevator operator and continued to write. At age twenty he appeared before an audience to give an address before the Western Association of Writers. This lead to notoriety outside of Dayton. A famous poet, James Whitcomb Riley read of Dunbar's work and encouraged him to publish his work. Dunbar approached the United Brethren Publishing House of Dayton, which eventually printed his first book, entitled Oak and Ivy. His second collection was published in 1895, Majors and Minors.
Dunbar's poets received positive reviews by novelist Williams Dean Howell,(one of America's greatest critics of the times) in an articles in Harper's Weekly. ...

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Added: 12/12/2007 10:31:16 PM
Category: Biographies
Type: Free Paper
Words: 619
Pages: 3

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