Alice Walker was born the youngest of eight children into a sharecropper and dairy farming family in Eatonton, Georgia. In the years after graduating from Sarah Lawrence College in 1965, she taught in Mississippi, worked for the Civil Rights movement, and began her writing career. Walker’s written work includes several collections of poetry and essays, and five novels. Her novel The Color Purple won the Pulitzer Prize and was made into a film by Steven Spielberg. Infused with political activism, Walker’s writing often focuses on the plight of black women. In recent years she has worked to increase awareness about female genital mutilation.