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Richard Wright Biography | Author of Black Boy

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Author Biography

Richard Nathaniel Wright was born on September 4, 1908, at Rucker's Plantation in Roxie, Mississippi. His parents were Ellen Wilson, a schoolteacher, and Nathan Wright, a sharecropper. His brother Leon was born in 1910 and one year later they moved to Ellen's parents' house in Natchez. It is that house in which Wright's novel Black Boy has its opening drama.

The family moved to Memphis in 1913 and soon thereafter Richard's father deserted them. For the next few years, Ellen did her best to feed and clothe the boys, but she began a devastating cycle of illness. At one point she moved her boys to the prosperous home of her sister Maggie and brother-in-law Silas Hoskins in Elaine, Arkansas. Unfortunately, he was murdered by a white mob, and Maggie, Ellen, and the boys fled to West Helena.

Over the next few years, Ellen's illness forced the extended family to shift Richard between...

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This section contains 463 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Black Boy Study Guide
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Black Boy from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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