Prize-winning author Alice Walker is placing her
literary archive in Atlanta at Emory University's
The author of the
1983 Pulitzer Prize-winning The Color
Purple, By the Light of My Father's Smile, and other
works visits Emory every couple of years for readings
and meetings with faculty members. That relationship
was key in her decision to place her archive at the
institution, university officials said Tuesday.
''I can imagine
in years to come that my papers and memorabilia, my
journals and letters, will find themselves always in the
company of people who care about many of the things I
do: culture, community, spirituality, scholarship and
the blessings of ancestors who want each of us to find
joy and happiness in this life, by doing the very best we
can to be worthy of it,'' Walker said in a statement.
Emory's relationship with the Dalai Lama also played a part
in her decision. The Tibetan spiritual leader joined the
university's faculty in October as a presidential
distinguished professor and plans to periodically
visit Emory to give talks to students.
Emory is ''a
place where my archive can rest with joy in the company it
keeps,'' Walker said.
Her archive spans
40 years and includes journals she has kept since she
was a teenager, drafts of many of her works of fiction --
including The Color Purple, which also won the
National Book Award -- and correspondence between
Walker and editors, friends, and family. Some of the
correspondence is from Oprah Winfrey,
composer-musician Quincy Jones, and author Tillie Olsen.
also includes papers Walker wrote while at Sarah Lawrence
College, where she received an undergraduate degree.
''The archive is
remarkably complete,'' said Steve Enniss, director of
Emory's manuscript, archives, and rare-book library. ''It's
especially gratifying when we make an acquisition of a
writer who is a native Georgian.'' Walker was born in
The archive will
be ready for public viewing in about a year, Enniss
Emory has an
extensive literary archive with papers from such writers as
Langston Hughes, James Weldon Johnson, Seamus Heaney, Salman
Rushdie, and Flannery O'Connor. (AP)