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Bebe Moore Campbell
Born Elizabeth Bebe Moore
February 18, 1950(1950-02-18)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died November 27, 2006 (aged 56)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation Author, Teacher
Years active 1972-present
Spouse(s) Ellis Gordon Jr. (1984-her death)

Bebe Moore Campbell (February 18, 1950 – November 27, 2006), was the author of three New York Times bestsellers, Brothers and Sisters, Singing in the Comeback Choir, and What You Owe Me, which was also a Los Angeles Times "Best Book of 2001". Her other works include the novel Your Blues Ain't Like Mine, which was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and the winner of the NAACP Image Award for Literature; her memoir, Sweet Summer, Growing Up With and Without My Dad; and her first nonfiction book, Successful Women, Angry Men: Backlash in the Two-Career Marriage. Her essays, articles, and excerpts appear in many anthologies.

Ms. Campbell's interest in mental health was the catalyst for her first children's book, Sometimes My Mommy Gets Angry, which was published in September 2003. This book won the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) Outstanding Literature Award for 2003. The book tells the story of how a little girl copes with being reared by her mentally ill mother. Ms. Campbell was a member of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill and a founding member of NAMI-Inglewood. Her latest book, 72 Hour Hold, also deals with mental illness. Her first play, "Even with the Madness", debuted in New York in June 2003. This work revisited the theme of mental illness and the family.

As a journalist, Campbell wrote articles for The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, Essence, Ebony, Black Enterprise, as well as other publications. She was a regular commentator for Morning Edition a program on National Public Radio.

Personal life

Born as Elizabeth Bebe Moore and reared in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, she graduated from the Philadelphia High School for Girls and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education from the University of Pittsburgh. She was an honorary member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.

She lived in Los Angeles, California with her husband, Ellis Gordon Jr.; they had two children, a son, Ellis Gordon III, and a daughter, actress Maia Campbell, who is best known for her role as "Tiffany" on In the House.

Bebe Moore Campbell died from brain cancer, aged 56, on November 27, 2006. Interred at Inglewood Park Cemetery, Inglewood California.

Her favorite quote on being a writer was "Discipline is the servant of inspiration".


  • Campbell, Bebe Moore. "An Interview with Bebe Moore Campbell" [excerpt] Callaloo Volume 22, Number 4: Fall 1999, pp. 954-972. As reported at Project Muse. Retrieved August 14, 2006.

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