Christian, Barbara, 1943-2000

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Barbara Christian was born on December 12, 1943 in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. She earned her Ph.D. in English Literature from Columbia University in 1970; a year later, she became an assistant professor at U.C. Berkeley. She was a prominent figure in establishing the African American Studies Department, and in 1978 she became the first African American woman at Berkeley to receive tenure. In 1986, she became a full professor and eventually received the Distinguished Teaching Award in 1991. She is best known for Black Feminist Criticism and her study, Black Women Novelists: The Development of a Tradition . She was one of the first academic professors to focus attention on Toni Morrison and Alice Walker, among other black women novelists and writers. She edited portions of the Norton Anthology of African American Literature from the 1970s to the 1990s. The MELUS Award and the American Book Award were among the many honors she received during her lifetime. She taught at U.C. Berkeley from 1972 until her death on June 25, 2000. She is survived by her daughter, Najuma I. Henderson.

From the guide to the Barbara Christian papers, 1967-2000, (The Bancroft Library)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Portraits of University of California individuals and groups, ca. 1850-[ongoing] The Bancroft Library. University Archives.
creatorOf Christian, Barbara. The poetry of Robert Frost : a search for a unifying idea. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Walker, Alice, 1944-. Alice Walker papers, circa 1930-2010. Emory University Library, Special Collect Department
creatorOf Barbara Christian papers, 1967-2000 Bancroft Library
referencedIn Marlon Riggs Collection, 1957-1994 Cecil H. Green Library. Department of Special Collections and University Archives
creatorOf Christian, Barbara, 1943-2000. Sound recordings from the Barbara Christian papers [sound recording]. UC Berkeley Libraries
creatorOf Christian, Barbara, 1943-2000. Barbara Christian papers, 1967-2000. UC Berkeley Libraries
creatorOf University of Guelph. Library. Staff. Photograph of Learning Commons staff, for time capsule, Jan. 2000. University of Guelph
creatorOf Christian, Barbara, 1943-2000. Sound recordings from the Barbara Christian papers [sound recording]. UC Berkeley Libraries
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000. person
associatedWith Christian, Barbara, 1943-2000. person
associatedWith Jordan, June, 1936- person
associatedWith Kaufman, Bob. person
associatedWith Morrison, Toni. person
associatedWith Naylor, Gloria. person
associatedWith Online Archive of California. corporateBody
associatedWith Riggs, Marlon. person
associatedWith Rodney, Walter. person
associatedWith University of Guelph. Library. Staff. corporateBody
associatedWith Walker, Alice, 1944- person
Place Name Admin Code Country
African American women authors--20th century


Birth 1943-12-12

Death 2000-06-25





Ark ID: w62b8x6s

SNAC ID: 19959532