Mari Evans

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Mari Evans (born July 16, 1923 in Toledo, Ohio) is an African-American poet, living in Indianapolis.

Education and Employment

Evans attended the University of Toledo where she majored in fashion design in 1939. The fashion design major did not hold her interest and she left the University of Toledo without a degree. Evans began a series of teaching appointments in American universities in 1969. During 1969-1970, she served as writer in residence at Indiana University-Purdue, where she taught courses in African American Literature. The next year, Evans accepted a position as the writer in residence at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. From 1968-1973, Evans produced, wrote and directed the television program called "The Black Experience" for WTTV in Indianapolis, Indiana. Evans received an honorary degree from Marion College in 1975. Evans continued her teaching career at Purdue (1978–1980), at Washington University in Saint Louis (1980), at Cornell University (1981–85) at the State-University of New York – Albany (1985–1986).

Life's Work

Mari Evans has written several poems, short fiction stories, children’s books, and plays. She is known for her many poems. One, called "When In Rome", is taught in many high schools and college English classes. The poem ends, "I'm tired of eatin' what they eats in Rome." The last line provides the poem with its famous title. It is a dialogue poem, between Mattie and her possible...
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