Tennessee Williams was born in 1914 in Columbus, Miss. He is acknowledged as one of America's greatest dramatists winning his first successes with the productions of "The Glass Menagerie" and "A Streetcar Named Desire". In these plays, as in many of his later works, Williams explores the intense passions and frustrations of a disturbed and frequently brutal society.
Tennessee Williams was the first son and second child of Cornelius Coffin and Edwina Dakin Williams. His mother was the daughter of a minister and his father was a shoe salesman who came from a prestigious Tennessee family which included the states' first governor and first senator. The family lived for several years in Clarkdale, Mississippi before moving to St. Louis in 1918. He attended several universities and graduated in 1938 from the University of Iowa.
He wrote fiction and motion picture screenplays and is noted for his scenes of high dramatic tension and for brilliant dialogue. He is perhaps most successful in his portraits of the hypersensitive and lonely southern woman. Williams achieved a fame that few playwrights of his day could equal.