Amy Alexander is the media columnist at Africana.com, (www.Africana.com) and editor of The Farrakhan Factor: African American Writers on Leadership, Nationhood, and Minister Louis Farrakhan. (Grove Press, 1998). She is author of Fifty Black Women Who Changed America (Birch Lane Press, 1999).
Her current book, Lay My Burden Down: Suicide and the Mental Health Crisis among African-Americans, is co-authored with Alvin Poussaint, M.D., and was published in October 2000, by Beacon Press. She is a contributor to The Boston Globe, where she writes about culture, race, and politics for the Op-Ed, Living Arts, and Book Review sections. Since 1997, she has also contributed to The Chicago Tribune Book Review; Black Issues/Book Review, Essence Magazine, and Salon.com.
From 1993 to 1997, Alexander was a staff writer at The Miami Herald, where she covered minority affairs. In 1992, while a staff writer at The Fresno Bee, she received the California Newspaper Publisher’s Association Award for spot news coverage of the Los Angeles riots. During three years as a staff writer at The Fresno Bee, Alexander reported on education, crime, environmental issues, and minority affairs (1990-1993). Her investigative reporting on the devastating effects of electromagnetic fields at a Fresno elementary school was profiled in The New Yorker magazine (Dec. 7, 1992). In 1987, Alexander received a Writer’s Fellowship at The Village Voice, where she reported local news and conducted research for senior writers and editors. A native of San Francisco, she majored in magazine journalism at San Francisco State University. Alexander lives in Boston with her husband, Joseph P. Williams, Jr., and their daughter, Grace.
Her media columns appear every other Thursday at Africana.com. Her books are available at Amazon.com, and Barnesandnobles.com, where you can also find an interview with Alexander on LOUIS FARRAKHAN. Alexander’s articles for The Boston Globe are also available at www.Boston.com.
Alexander’s work is best described as literary, race-relations journalism. Her major journalistic influences include: Joan Didion, Gordon Parks, David Halberstam, Ida B. Wells, Zora Neale Hurston, James Baldwin, Edna Buchanan, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Stanley Crouch.
Chief among her cultural interests are 20th Century American theater (including the plays of Tennessee Williams, Alan Ayckbourn, and David Mamet), and classic American musicals (including “Kiss Me Kate,” “The Boyfriend,” “Gypsy,” “Mame,” “A Chorus Line,” and “Chicago.”) Alexander is also a big fan of American cinema, particularly films of the 1930s, `40s, and `50s, including, “Stagecoach,” “Drums Along the Mohawk,” “My Man Godfrey,” “It Happened One Night,” “Now, Voyager,” “Rebecca,” “Gentleman’s Agreement,” “Sunset Boulevard,” “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “All About Eve,” “Strangers on a Train,” “Rear Window,” and “The Birds.”
Alexander’s popular music tastes run toward classic soul, R&B, and rock’n’roll. Favorite artists include Otis Redding, the Dramatics, Aretha Franklin, Janis Joplin, Led Zepplin, the Temptations, Earth, Wind & Fire, the Doors, Curtis Mayfield, Jefferson Airplane, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Stevie Wonder, Prince, Dionne Warwick, the Isley Brothers, Stevie Nicks, and George Clinton/Parliament-Funkadelic.