Review copyright 2023 by Alice Walker
This biography of the extraordinary writer, poet, humanist and scholar Margaret Walker (Alexander) is one for the ages. It is unlikely there will ever be an offering about her life to match what Maryemma Graham has accomplished in this complex and seemingly complete study of Walker’s exceptionally creative and varied life.
Among other gifts, we are invited to understand more fully the richness and variety of Southern life, specifically academic, scholarly, and poetic life in the worlds of Alabama, New Orleans, Jackson, Mississippi and other locations where the flourishing of black universities and colleges has, for generations, fed the unstoppable spirit of black creative people who realize one must have deep roots in order to grow expansive wings.
Thank the Universe for Margaret Walker! Whose signature poem, “For My People” cradled so many hundreds of thousands of us, for decades, in the assurance that we were seen, loved, and championed by someone who never stopped honing her skills of inquiry, observation and debate, in order to keep us firmly on a challenging path ancestors saw before us, literally before we were born.~aw