1728 – Mercy Otis Warren, American poet, playwright, author, and political writer and propagandist of the American Revolution; in 1790, she published a collection of poems and plays under her own name, which was highly unusual for a woman at the time; in 1805, she published the three-volume History of the Rise, Progress, and Termination of the American Revolution, one of the earliest published histories of the American Revolution, and the first that was authored by a woman.
1843 – Lola Rodríguez de Tió, Puerto Rican poet, author, abolitionist, and women’s rights activist who was the first Puerto Rican-born woman poet to establish herself a literary reputation throughout Latin America.
1860 – Hannibal Hamlin Garland, American novelist, poet, essayist, biographer, short-story writer, and researcher into the supernatural; he is best remembered for his fiction involving farmers in the Midwest.
1869 – Lyubov Fyodorovna Dostoevskaya, Russian author, short-story writer, and memoirist whose father was the famous novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky; she was also known as Aimée Dostoyevskaya.
1879 – Margaret Higgins Sanger (also known as Margaret Sanger Slee), American birth-control activist, sex educator, writer, and nurse who popularized the term “birth control,” opened the first birth-control clinic in the United States, and established organizations that evolved into the Planned Parenthood Federation of America.
1908 – Tsendiin Damdinsüren, Mongolian author, translator, and linguist who wrote the text to one version of the national anthem of Mongolia.
1910 – Edith Thacher Hurd, prolific American children’s author who coauthored several of her books with famed writer Margaret Wise Brown; Hurd’s husband, Clement Hurd, illustrated many of her books.
1911 – William Howard Armstrong, Newbery Medal-winning American children’s author and educator, best known for the classic novel, Sounder, about an African-American sharecropping family in the southern U.S.
1920 – Mario Benedetti, Uruguayan journalist, novelist, playwright, poet, and journalist who is not well known in the English-speaking world, but who, in the Spanish-speaking world, is considered one of Latin America’s most important writers of the latter half of the 20th century.
1924 – Alexander Artemiev, Russian Chuvash poet, prose writer, translator, and literary critic.
1929 – Suheil Bushrui, Israeli writer, poet, literary critic, translator, professor, and peace activist, well known for bringing Yeats’s poetry to an Arab-speaking audience.
1929 – Larry Collins, American novelist, journalist, editor, and nonfiction author.
1929 – Ferdinand Oyono, Cameroonian writer, politician, and diplomat; his literary work, written in French, is recognized for a sense of irony that reveals how easily people can be fooled.
1930 – Anne Bernays, American novelist, nonfiction author, editor, and professor; her book What If? Writing Exercises for Fiction Writers (coauthored with Pamela Painter) is one of the most widely used guides to creative writing.
1930 – Anton Nikolov Donchev, Bulgarian politician who is also a popular writer of historical novels and a screenwriter for Bulgarian historical drama films.
1931 – Ivan Klíma, award-winning Czech novelist and playwright.
1933 – Hans Faverey, award-winning Dutch poet, psychologist, and lecturer of Surinamese descent; his poetry was more popular among critics than readers, who thought of it as dense and difficult, but Favery usually laughed at such remarks, insisting that it really is not that hard.
1934 – Sarah Kofman, French writer, philosopher, autobiographer, and university teacher.
1934 – Kate Millett (full name Katherine Murray Millett), American feminist writer, educator, artist, and activist, best known as the author of Sexual Politics.
1937 – Radu Klapper, Romanian-born Israeli writer, poet, author, librarian, and critic; his book, “Jews Against their Will,” dealt with the relationship between famous figures and their Jewish identity.
1938 – Tiziano Terzani, Italian journalist and author, best known for his extensive knowledge of East Asia and for being one of the few western reporters to witness and write about both the fall of Saigon to the hands of the Viet Cong and the fall of Phnom Penh at the hands of the Khmer Rouge.
1939 – Aslan Gahraman oglu Gahramanly, Azerbaijani playwright, short-story writer, and scholar.
1942 – Bernard MacLaverty, award-winning Irish novelist, screenwriter, and short-story writer; two of his novels, Lamb and Cal, have been made into major films, for which he wrote the screenplays.
1946 – Dida Drăgan, Romanian poet, musician, and pop star.
1947 – Park Yeonghan, South Korean novelist and short-story writer whose award-winning bestselling book The Distant Ssongba River was based on his experiences as fighting in the Vietnam War.
1948 – Marc Reisner, American environmentalist and writer best known for his book Cadillac Desert, a history of water management in the American West, which was included on a list of the 100 most notable English-language works of nonfiction of the 20th century.
1949 – Kodavatiganti Rohini Prasad, Indian Telugu-language author, writer, physicist, nuclear physicist, and expert in Hindustani classical music; he wrote books on science, music, and other subjects. He was the son of well known Telugu writer Kodavatiganti Kutumbarao.
1950 – Juan Carlos Boveri, award-winning Argentine author of novel and short stories whose works are characterized by originality and depth, as well as criticisms of society; he is also a psychologist, sociologist and cultural anthropologist.
1950 – John Steptoe, African-American author and illustrator of children’s books that illuminate the African-American experience; his best known book, Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters, was considered a breakthrough in African history and culture.
1952 – Sudhir V. Shah, Indian neurologist, professor, and writer who is known for his research on brain cells and for articles and bestselling books on neurology and spirituality; he donates to charity the earnings from his books.
1954 – Wu Chin-fa, Taiwanese writer and politician of Hakka and indigenous descent; his writing often explores ethnic conflict in Taiwan from the perspective of youths.
1955 – Geraldine Brooks, Pulitzer Prize-winning Australian-born journalist and author whose best known book is the novel March, which focuses on the absent father of the March family that is the subject of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel, Little Women.
1955 – Pier Vittorio Tondelli, Italian author and journalist who wrote a small but influential body of work and was controversial for his use of homosexual themes.
1957 – Grażyna Wojcieszko, award-winning Polish writer and poet.
1958 – Garikipati Narasimha Rao, Indian writer, lecturer, and Telugu-language Avadhani (literary performer). Avadhanis are respected for their abilities to spin out verses conforming to Telugu grammar on literally any subject an audience suggests, and
display extreme powers of memorization.
1964 – Martín Hahn, Venezuelan writer, screenwriter, and playwright best known for writing telenovelas of mystery and suspense.
1965 – Aline Poulin, award-winning Canadian writer, poet, archivist, and literary reporter.
1966 – Jolita Herlyn, Lithuanian novelist, university teacher, and television presenter.
1967 – Michael Schmidt-Salomon, German author, philosopher, journalist, and children’s writer.
1968 – Shūichi Yoshida (吉田 修), award-winning Japanese novelist, short-story writer, and lyricist.
1971 – Henrietta Rose-Innes, award-winning South African novelist and short-story writer.
1973 – Asieh Amini, Iranian poet and journalist currently residing in Norway; she is an activist for women’s rights and against the death penalty, especially against the stoning of women and minors in Iran.
1976 – Adelle Stripe, award-winning English writer, poet, and blogger whose debut novel, Black Teeth and a Brilliant Smile, was based on the life and work of playwright Andrea Dunbar.
1978 – Gabriel Torrelles, Venezuelan writer and filmmaker who is editor-in-chief of Urbe, Venezuela’s first youth newspaper.
1987 – Ekiwah Adler Beléndez, Pushcart Prize-nominated Mexican poet and editor; after traveling far from his remote mountain village home in Mexico to receive lifesaving spinal surgery, he returned to Mexico, where he established writing workshops for students, including those with cerebral palsy and other movement-related disabilities, to help them to tell their stories in their own words.