Carolyn M. Rodgers
Carolyn M. Rodgers grew up on Chicago’s South Side. She attended Roosevelt University and the University of Chicago, and received her MA in English from the University of Chicago. Early in her career she was associated with the Black Arts Movement, attending writing workshops led by Gwendolyn Brooks and through the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC). Her collections of poetry include Paper Soul (1968); Songs of a Blackbird (1969), which won the Poet Laureate Award of the Society of Midland Authors; how I got ovah: New and Selected Poems (1975); The Heart as Ever Green: Poems (1978); and Morning Glory: Poems (1989).
Rodgers’s poetry addresses feminist issues, including the role of black women in society, though her work has evolved from a militant stance to one more focused on the individual and Christianity. In addition to poetry, she has written plays, short stories, and essays. She worked as a book critic for the Chicago Daily News and as a columnist for the Milwaukee Courier.
Rodgers founded Third World Press in 1967 with Haki Madhubuti, Johari Amini, and Roschell Rich. She began Eden Press with a grant from the Illinois Arts Council. Rodgers has worked as a social worker through the YMCA and taught at various colleges, including Columbia College and Malcolm X Community College.
Rodgers has received awards from the Conrad Kent River Memorial Fund and the National Endowment for the Arts.