Richard Wright was an extraordinarily talented writer who made alienation and anger the twin themes in many of his greatest works. Born in Mississippi and raised in Chicago, Wright only reached the eighth grade in terms of formal education. Yet, he learned to write so well that one of his first short stories earned a national award from a group of judges that included the Nobel laureate Sinclair Lewis.
Wright eventually became both a celebrated and controversial figure, highly admired by the cream of Europe but detested by several of his peers. His first major novel, Native Son in 1940, was a Book-of-The-Month club selection and later became both a movie and the first integrated play to become a Broadway hit. But Wright didn