Writing - The Gordon Parks Foundation

Parks at work at his desk, ca. 1946.

Gordon Parks was an accomplished writer of memoirs, poetry, novels, and plays. In addition, some of Parks’ earliest published works include two books on photography techniques, published on the cusp of Parks’ career at Life magazine. After establishing himself as a photographer of note, Parks wrote his first of several novels, The Learning Tree (1964), a semi-autobiographical account of a black boy growing up in segregated Kansas that would later be adapted for film. Some of the earliest publications that include images Parks made for Life were collections of Parks' poetry with Parks' accompanying images, such as Gordon Parks: A Poet and His Camera (1968). The books Glimpses Towards Infinity and Arias In Silence showcase Parks’ later abstract photographic work, which were a far departure from his photodocumentary style he’s best known for.   Parks continued to author works throughout his life, spending several of his last years researching the life of the English Romanticist painter Joseph Mallord William Turner whom his final novel, The Sun Stalker, a work of historical fiction, is based upon. 


The Learning Tree - English Edition

The Learning Tree - Spanish Edition

The Learning Tree - German Edition

The Learning Tree - Dutch Edition

The Learning Tree - Danish Edition

A Choice of Weapons - English Edition

A Choice of Weapons - German Edition

Born Black


To Smile in Autumn


The Sun Stalker

Voices in the Mirror

A Hungry Heart


*Flash Photography. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1947

*Camera Portraits: Techniques and Principles of Documentary Portraiture. New York: Franklin Watts, 1948

*The Learning Tree. New York: Harper & Row, 1963

*A Choice of Weapons. New York: Harper & Row, 1966

*Gordon Parks: A Poet and His Camera. New York: Viking, 1968

*Born Black. Philadelphia: Lippincott, 1971

*Gordon Parks: In Love. Philadelphia: Lippincott, 1971

*Gordon Parks: Whispers of Intimate Things. New York: Viking, 1971

*Moments Without Proper Names. New York: Viking, 1975

*Flavio. New York: W.W. Norton, 1978

*To Smile in Autumn. New York: W.W. Norton, 1979

*Shannon. Boston: Little, Brown, 1981

*Voices in the Mirror. New York: Doubleday, 1990

*Arias in Silence. Boston: Bulfinch, 1994

*Glimpses Toward Infinity. Boston: Little Brown, 1996

*Half Past Autumn. Boston: Bulfinch, 1997

*A Star for Noon: An Homage to Women in Images, Poetry, and Music. Boston: Bulfinch, 2000

*The Sun Stalker. New York: Ruder Finn, 2003

*Eyes with Winged Thoughts. New York: Atria, 2005

*A Hungry Heart. New York: Washington Square, 2005