Leslie Marmon Silko - Biography and Works

Leslie Marmon Silko is a Native American author whose emergence in the 1970s coincided with a revival of interest in Native American culture in North America. Silko is of mixed white, Hispanic, and Native American ancestry. She is known for her stories and poems that claim her faith in the Laguna rituals, myths and way of life.

Leslie M. Silko (Born in 1948)

Silko was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and grew up at Laguna Pueblo, A Native American Pueblo community in New Mexico where her family had lived for generations. She first attended schools managed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and later she went to Catholic schools in Albuquerque. She earned a B.A. degree in English from the University of New Mexico in 1969 and then taught for two years at Navajo Community College in Tsaile, Arizona. She later spent two years in Ketchikan, Alaska, before returning to teach at the University of New Mexico from 1976 to 1978.

In 1978 Silko moved to Tucson, Arizona. From 1980 to 1986 she was a professor of English at the University of Arizona. Many of Silko’s early short stories and poems were collected in anthologies of Native American writing. Her first book, the poetry collection Laguna Woman (1974), combined meditations on Native American traditions with vivid descriptions of the natural landscape. Storyteller, an anthology of poetry, short fiction, traditional stories, and photographs, appeared in 1981. That same year, Silko received a MacArthur Foundation Grant. After Ceremony her first novel that established as a major American author, Silko’s second novel, Almanac of the Dead appeared in 1991. It offers several narratives connected with a 19th-century prophecy that Native Americans will one day regain control of North America. Writers in the United States like Silko, who always attempted to explore the power of traditional beliefs and the despair of living in two worlds. Silko eschews traditional prosody, working in fluid stanzas that approximate the dynamism of the natural world.

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Sharma, Kedar N. "Leslie Marmon Silko - Biography and Works." BachelorandMaster, 12 Nov. 2013, bachelorandmaster.com/biography/leslie-marmon-silko.html.

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