The Biography Portal

Third Volume of a 1727 edition of Plutarch's Lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans printed by Jacob Tonson

A biography, or simply bio, is a detailed description of a person's life. It involves more than just the basic facts like education, work, relationships, and death; it portrays a person's experience of these life events. Unlike a profile or curriculum vitae (résumé), a biography presents a subject's life story, highlighting various aspects of his or her life, including intimate details of experience, and may include an analysis of the subject's personality.

Biographical works are usually non-fiction, but fiction can also be used to portray a person's life. One in-depth form of biographical coverage is called legacy writing. Works in diverse media, from literature to film, form the genre known as biography.

An authorized biography is written with the permission, cooperation, and at times, participation of a subject or a subject's heirs. An autobiography is written by the person himself or herself, sometimes with the assistance of a collaborator or ghostwriter.

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Joseph Smith, Jr. portrait owned by Joseph Smith III.jpg
Credit: Joseph Smith, Jr. portrait owned by Joseph Smith III

Joseph Smith, Jr. (December 23, 1805 – June 27, 1844) was an American religious leader and founder of Mormonism. When he was twenty-four, Smith published the Book of Mormon; by the time of his death, fourteen years later, he had attracted tens of thousands of followers and founded a religion and religious culture that continues to this day.

On this day – November 19

James Abram Garfield, photo portrait seated.jpg

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In the news

13 November 2019 – 2019 Hong Kong protests
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam vows not to give in to protesters as chaos continues into Wednesday morning. (The Straits Times)
12 November 2019 – 2019 Hong Kong protests
After police shoot a protester with live ammunition, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam speaks out and labels the protesters as "selfish" for "paralyzing" the city and urges all students not to take part in protests. (Reuters)
12 November 2019 – November 2019 Spanish general election
Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez from the PSOE and Pablo Iglesias, leader of the left-wing Podemos, announce a first government agreement that will constitute the first coalition government in Spain's democratic history. This follows the failure to reach an agreement last summer and the rise of the far-right party Vox. (The New York Times)
11 November 2019 – Gaza–Israel conflict
The Israel Defense Forces say they've killed Baha Abu al-Ata, leader of the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine's armed wing known as the Al-Quds Brigades, in an airstrike on a building in the Gaza Strip. PIJ confirms the death of Baha Abu al-Ata and his wife, vowing to "shake the Zionist entity to its core" in response. (Haaretz) (The Jerusalem Post)
11 November 2019 – 2019 Hong Kong protests
Embattled Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam says on Monday that violence has exceeded protesters' demands for democracy and labels the demonstrators as the "people's enemy". (Reuters)
10 November 2019 –
The Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo announces it has "neutralized" the leader of an offshoot of a Hutu militia, the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda, in another blow to a "weakened group". (Reuters)
Updated: 10:30, 18 November 2019

Quote of the week

"Not one of us knows what effect his life produces, and what he gives to others; that is hidden from us and must remain so, though we are often allowed to see some little fraction of it, so that we may not lose courage."

Albert Schweitzer

In The Spiritual Life, 1947

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