You are on page 1of 30

Masani Alexis DeVeaux

I was born one of eight children on apartment in the East Village, New : September 24, 1948, and raised in York City, circa 1969. I was twenty-Harlem, New York City. My mother one years old then and just beginwas on welfare at the time and my fa- ning to imagine myself as a writer (at ther was in prison in upstate New the time of this photograph, I was only writing poetry). Shortly after this York for the better part of my early childhood. I attended elementary photo was taken, I started work on and junior high schools in Harlem. my first book, Spirits in the Street Later, when we moved to the South (Doubleday, 1973). Bronx, I attended and graduated from Walton High School which was Masani Alexis De Veaux is a poet, essayist, located in a White working-class - playwright, and politlcal activist whose work is community in the North Bronx. Al- nationally and internationally known. In addithough my paternal grandmother tion to the experimental novel Spirits in the was licensed as a teacher in North Street, her works include two award winning Carolina, when she migrated north in children's books, Na-Ni (Harper and Row, the 1930s, the only job she could se- 1973), An Enchanted Hair Tale (Harper and cure was one as 9- maid. My maternal Row, 1987), and Don't Explain, a biography of grandfather worked for the New York jazz great Billie Holiday. Her plays have been City Transit Authority laying tiles. This produced on television, Off Broadway, Off-Off photograph was taken of me in an Broadway, in regional theaters and include:

Circles (1972); The Tapestry{1976}; A Season to Unravel (1979); the highly acclaimed No (1981); and Elbow Rooms (1987). She worked as a writer, contrihuting editor," and editor-ai-large' with Essence magazine for twelve years. In this capacity, she examined a global spectrum 01 social and political issues important to African-American Women, ThirdWorld Women, and Women of Color. As an activist, she has traveled extenSively in Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, Japan, and throughout the United States, working with various Third World Women's and Women of Color organizations, and is an active sponsor of MADRE, an international organization based in New York City, and a Board member of the St. Croix-based SISA: Sisterhood in Support .of Sisters in South Africa. Presently, she is an assistant professor of Women's Studies and a faculty member of the American Studies Department in the Siale University, of New York at Buffalo. ~
,I

q,
I.'
"i I·

----....... -,

'~

~

co
~

a...
CD

o c

(f)

< o.
o
CD

m<
OJm

0» -0;0.
0.::)
-,

(l)e _.
~CD CD(J)
(J)_

-0;0

......

m

zr

,Ji.

:::r CD
III

en

Otl

o Z .....

s: '"

.., .....
CD III

,.
.1"" III ID

::s

I:

cg

III

mE
01:1

.o
It

o :I

o ....

e

" >

c

s o
N

I

g
o

o.
..".

s o
N

I
o

................ ...... " ~
"

s
o o o

~

oj
U

ru ...
,0

S,
",,'

'" '"

>.

....... :lR..

v>

5i
o
o

., '"
U

o c c

-e

a: ==

.,
...

.:;,

g

'0

.. ..
o
D

,"'" '" '"
o o

o

..
'" "

'" c
'"
I-

o

o

s o
..".

~ .....
...~ ... '"
V>

o

'"

c o

a:

o

o

6

o ...
• ,"t'
i

J\

"'-

.

o c

..
" ...
o
u

.,
;:
I-

"

'" ..
o

c eo

_,
':I;

'" ,0
o

'"
_,

o

"'

.. _,
= '" '" > ,".
r

" -e " "

.~ .~
"
>
Q

.,

s;
nI ..

z

~
-

~ IJ

z <[ E

nI

..~
I'

.~

;

i ~
l!
u <I

t

;;:: V

.. "'
-"

~ ... ~
._

\lil

. ".
" .= ..

..

~ ~
@

t.
~

:1 ...
u:
U

..
N

0 0

M

.... '" s::.!l!
<>.'0

......
v
'.

~ • ~ " s
'~

8 :!I -5 >:

,.;
III

!!~

.:;:

...
nI
CII

'" ~ :;' ~ .g
il

::>

:E

S1.

... '"
s:;
CII

3

0 S;

!!

1i

~
,;

e-,

.. o .. ...
o

::. o
I:
J:
0

.s
'"
;:;

~ ~
&

~

o

"

£

0 0

0

V>

~

0 0 0

s ~

0 0

8

,;;.

0 .;;

0 0

i

0

0 0

0

'" '"

Q_

:<:

....
-e

...

"' ~

o

..

o

e,

B-

-s

iJ '2

., ·11 E

o
o

.J

...

I
o o
<T e>

9-

;;!

..
=:

...

" o
<"

o
o

..,

'"

.,

y

'o "
o

...

'" o

..
" "
;>-

o -e

" '"

o ....,

"' " :>
"

..,
<.>

., ...
" :c

.,

.. c
" '"
o

...

" ...
:c

...

.J

"'
c

"
U')

..

A

c
U

o

.5 21 ..,

00

"., ' ~

'"

o
",.

.,. "'

z
.0

'"
."

.. ..
it

w

'" " >"
> e-

U1:

o

'v

'" :;

'"
'",

...
o ,o

:c

o

'"

'" o

..

...
:I:

"'

" o
o

...
o
.;,

"
:-

n

__

c

----

----_..._-

<r: U
~

i==I

"
.--

..'

....

.......

'.

~
I

o~ z f=9 oo u
~ ~

~

".

Z F==I
~

ir:

o
~

o
u

Z i==I
~I

r.x;;l
p=J

"I

=

·.~

cc

u

:.:
o
z;

o

u

'" ~

.

-'"

....
e-,
,

.. ..
c
z

"

I

... ,.,
-e
to

=

'"
'" .,
o
o u

'".. .=

"' o
o

'" o <> '"

..
"

o

'"
'" o'
<> o

'" :c
....

:~ .s· o

I

0

'" o
:.:
6 z o
U to

"j:

o

" "

o

..
_,
o o

"'
c

..
o o

_,
o

'"

u

'"
...

0;

'",

"

I

:c

.. '

"' ~
'" o

'"
..:

'" '" o
o
:0

,""
00

""-

" ..

"

o

'"

);l

o o

" c '"
-<

"

o

..

"" o
"" o
u

" =

;:;: o
2:

o
U

"'

;t

o

" z
<

"

I"

=
'"', -e

~ ...
o c: o
_',

"',

c u

"' ..
0::

'" c
c z c

u

'"

I;;.

o

c

u

'" c

'"

...

'"
0:

o

"
l;l

o z o

" ,"'

~
o ,,.
z.

," o
...

.,

o u

=.. .

ClJ ClJ

C

u

> u
·c

o

E o
u
ro

w

o

"'C C

..;
Q)

c

...c V') c
0...

E
::l

<V
0t;:

E

u

_.

'" '" ;;
"15

u <::

"E
w

u

o c o u

-0 <::

i '" ~
"-

'"

'" "c ::I
oj

~

E

OJ

v C

"15

;; '0

'"

;3

5

co

'"

OJ

u
OJ

"0

"

:5

·E
w
C
to

u

o c o u

"0

OJ <V

" "0
:5 '0

u

(; "0

u

OJ u
t:

(5

OJ

s u
"E
t:

o

.l:f

o c

"0

'" i OJ
..t:

"c

E .....
;:I

0..

;S

,.; E

QJ

V t:

(5

OJ

'0

s
S

8