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Lorraine Hansberry Most Promising Playwright Lorraine Hansberry was the first African-American woman to have a play produced on Broadway She dedicated her life to pursuing racial and sexual equality in the United States Hansberry was born into a middle-class family on the south side of Chicago in 1930 She recalled her childhood as a happy one The insulation of life within the Southside ghetto of what must have easily been half a million people protected me from some of the harsher and more bestial aspects of white-supremacist culture When Hansberry was around eight years old her family fought to live in a restricted white area and they were granted the permission to live in the area However they had to live through various violent actions and threats by angry neighbors This incident gave Hansberry a very positive opinion of her parents She became interested in theatre when she was in high school Mine was the same old story she recollected sort of hanging around little acting groups and developing the feeling that the theatre embraces everything I liked all at one time As she furthered her education at the University of Wisconsin she became even more acquainted with great theatre Lorraine Hansberry moved to New York City in 1950 to begin her career as a writer She wrote for Paul Robesons Freedom magazine and participated in various liberal crusades At one of the protests about discrimination at New York University she met Robert Nemiroff Despite the fact he that was white they fell in love and got married in 1953 He encouraged Hansberry in her writing efforts One night in 1957 when the couple was entertaining a group of friends they read a scene from her play in progress which was entitled A Raisin in the Sun Their friends loved the play so much that they pushed for the completion and production of the drama within the next several
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