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Lee, (Nelle) Harper

Summary Article: Lee, Harper 1926 - from The Cambridge Guide to Women's Writing in English
Southern American writer; author of To Kill a Mockingbird (1960). She was born in Monroeville, Alabama, to Amasa Coleman Lee, a lawyer, and his wife, Frances Finch Lee. As a young girl, Lee became friends with the boy living next door, Truman Capote. At the University of Alabama she wrote plays and parodies and edited the campus humour magazine. In 1950 she moved to New York, and worked in the reservations departments of two airlines while beginning her first novel. Against the background of her girlhood in Alabama, and the racial divisions and conflict she had seen – from the Scottsboro Incident of 1931, in which nine young black men, later proved innocent, were accused of raping two white women on a train, to Rosa Parks's arrest in Montgomery in 1955 for refusing to move to the back of a city bus – Lee created To Kill a Mockingbird.Her novel is widely read, and assigned in schools, nearly forty years after its publication. Its char...    Continue Reading

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