Biography (Cyclopedia of World Authors, Fourth Revised Edition)
It is unlikely that Susan Griffin would have developed into the feminist poet, philosopher, and social critic she is had she not come of age during the peace and justice movement of the 1960’s. While studying at universities in Berkeley and San Francisco (she received her B.A. in 1965 and her M.A. in 1973, both from San Francisco State University), Griffin joined many others of her generation in demonstrations against the Vietnam War and for civil rights. She witnessed the rise of the Black Power movement and was influenced by its analysis of oppression and racism.
These factors contributed to Griffin’s becoming a feminist, a transformation she maintains was completed in 1967, one year after marrying John Levy and one year before giving birth to her daughter, Rebecca. At this time, the style and content of Griffin’s writing became very personal. As a result of the new insight she gained into certain aspects of her life, she came to the conclusion that she had married in an attempt to accommodate the traditional idea of womanhood and to protect herself from society’s condemnation of single women and, more important in her case, of lesbians. In 1970 Griffin and her husband divorced, and she began a new life as a writer and a single parent.
Griffin regards herself above all else as a poet, and indeed, the first recognition she received for her writing was the 1963 Ina Coolbrith Prize in Poetry. Her first volume of poems, Dear...
(The entire section is 830 words.)
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