The Biography Portal


A biography is a detailed description or account of someone's life. More than a list of basic facts (education, work, relationships, and death), a biography also portrays a subject's experience of these 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 a 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. Biographical 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 about a life of a subject, written by that subject or sometimes with a collaborator.

More about biographies…

Featured biography

Harriet Tubman.jpg

Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Ross, c. 1820 – March 10, 1913) was an African-American abolitionist, humanitarian, and Union spy during the US Civil War. After escaping from slavery, into which she was born, she made thirteen missions to rescue some seventy slaves using a network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. She later helped John Brown recruit men for his raid on Harpers Ferry, and in the post-war era struggled for women's suffrage. ( Read more...)

Selected portrait

Vicente López Portaña - el pintor Francisco de Goya.jpg
Credit: Vicente López y Portaña

Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes (30 March 1746 – 16 April 1828) was a Spanish romantic painter and printmaker regarded both as the last of the Old Masters and the first of the moderns. Goya was court painter to the Spanish Crown; throughout the Peninsular War he remained in Madrid, where documented the war in the masterpiece known as the Desastres de la Guerra.

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Shangguan Yunzhu in the early 1940s

Quote of the week

"Here is a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished: If you're alive, it isn't."

Richard Bach

In Illusions, 1977

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