Biography of Harper Lee

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Biography of Harper Lee

Early Life: Nelle Harper Lee was the youngest of 4 children; Alice Lee, Louise Lee, and Edwin Coleman Lee. Life used to be very difficult for her at home. It's believed that her mother had bipolar syndrome (alternating periods of elation and depression) therefore, her mother rarely left the house. Lee's father was a lawyer too, so she didnt see him very often. Lee was known to be a tomboy, and an avid reader. She was known to fight on the playground, and talk back to the teachers. She was bored with school, until she befriended her next door neighbour; Truman Capote. They became best friends instantly. Lee often stepped up to serve as his protector. Trumans' life was just as difficult as Harpers'. He lived with his mothers relatives, because his parents had abandoned him. They helped each other write their books later in life and used each other as characters in each others books. Truman was "Dill" in Lees' To Kill A Mockingbird.

Name: Nelle Harper Lee Born: April 26th 1926 in Monroeville Alabama (age 88)Parents: Frances Cunningham Finch Lee and Amasa Coleman Lee Occupation: Novelist; To Kill A Mockingbird

To Kill A Mockingbird: In later years, Lee attended Huntingdon College for women from 1944-1945. Next, she decides to transfer to the University Of Alabama, where she plans to gain a degree in law. She disliked law, but enjoyed writing in the newspaper. 4 years later, Lee changes careers again. She leaves to New York City to pursue writing. But, in order to keep herself financially stable she goes to work. She works at different airlines, and her writing is put off to the side for now. Christmas 6 years later, Lee recieves a present that changes her life. Her friends gather an amount of money, so she can concentrate on her writing. After this life changing Christmas, she supports herself as a writer. July 11th 1960, is when her first and only book To Kill A Mockingbird is published. This book is a huge sucess and Harper Lee gains instant fame from it.

Biography of Harper Lee

On December 25th 1962, To Kill A Mockingbird the movie first came out. The movie cast includes Gregory Peck as Atticus, Mary Badham as Scout, and Phillip Alford as Jem. After seeing the film, Lee commented, "I can only say that I am a happy author. They have made my story into a beautiful and moving motion picture. I am very proud and grateful."

Harper Lee's Awards

Pulitzer Prize (1961) Brotherhood Award of the National Conference of Christians and Jews (1961) Alabama Library Association Award (1961) Bestsellers Paperback of the Year Award (1962) Member, National Council on the Arts (1966) Best Novel of the Century, Library Journal (1999) Alabama Humanities Award (2002) ATTY Award, Spector Gadon & Rosen Foundation (2005) Los Angeles Public Library Literary Award (2005) Honorary degree, University of Notre Dame (2006) American Academy of Arts and Letters (2007) Presidential Medal of Freedom (2007)

This book is humourous, but it also exhibits the issues of rape, racism, prejudice, violence, moral tolerance and courage back in the 1930's. The story is narrarated by a little girl; Scout Finch, who witnesses a trial about rape. Her father is the defendant's lawyer. To Kill A Mockingbird was based upon the life of Harper Lee, who is Scout Finch. Lee has used named many characters after people that were in her life. Dill Harris(Scouts' best friend) is Truman Capote. Also, the story takes place in Alabama, where Lee grew up. Lee has also taken many names from her famil, and created characters from them. For example; Cunningham, is a part of her mothers' name which is later created into a surname for a family. Harper Lee has also witnessed racism as a child, from attending her fathers trials. In one trial, her father fought for nine black men who were accused for raping a woman. All these men were later killed.

Harper Lee is awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom

Harper Lee and Gregory Peck

Pulitzer Prize

Young Harper Lee

Harper Lee and Truman Capote


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