Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry was a playwright, essayist, poet, and leading literary figure in the civil rights movement. Her play A Raisin in the Sun was nominated for a Tony Award and won the 1959 New York Drama Critics Circle Award, making Ms. Hansberry the first black, youngest person, and fifth woman to win that prize. It became the first play by an African-American woman produced on Broadway and has become a classic of the American theatre. Ms. Hansberry's other plays include The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window and Les Blancs. After her untimely death in 1965 at 34, she left a number of finished and unfinished writings that indicate the breadth of her social and artistic vision. Robert Nemiroff, her literary executor and former husband, adapted some of her writings for the stage under the title To Be Young, Gifted, and Black. The Huntington previously produced her plays Les Blancs in 1989 and A Raisin in the Sun in 1995. The Lorraine Hansberry Literary Trust, which licenses her catalogue of plays and writings, is based in Cambridge, MA. Her papers and manuscripts are archived at The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York City, a division of the NY Public Library.

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