Posted on 05/24/2020 at 08:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Here are the literary birthdays to celebrate over the week of May 24, 2020.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (May 25, 1803): Most famous for his essay “Self-Reliance,” Emerson’s personal manifestos (Nature and Address) rallied the literary movement known as Transcendentalism.

Raymond Carver (May 25, 1938). Carver gained literary acclaim with the short-story collection Will You Please Be Quiet, Please? and is credited with reviving the English-language short story.

Alexander Pushkin (May 26, 1799). Pushkin’s play Boris Godunov and novel Eugene Onegin are among the cornerstones of modern Russian literature.

Rachel Carson (May 27, 1907). Carson’s Silent Spring wasn’t even her first bestseller — that honor goes to 1951’s The Sea Around Us, which also won a National Book Award.

Maeve Binchy (May 28, 1940). Among the novels that gained Binchy fame for their depictions of relationships and small-town life were Firefly Summer, Circle of Friends, and Tara Road.

G. K. Chesterton (May 29, 1874). Chesterton worked his interest in social criticism into fiction, like the novel The Man Who Was Thursday and the short stories starring priest-sleuth Father Brown, but also wrote extensively about theology and literary criticism.

Countee Cullen (May 30, 1903): Cullen is considered one of the Harlem Renaissance’s finest poets; his most famous works include Copper Sun, The Ballad of the Brown Girl, and Color.

Birthdays sourced from Calendar of Literary Facts; biographical information sourced from Encyclopedia Britannica and author websites. Did we miss someone? Email and let us know.

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