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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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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.

On this day – February 16

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In the news

16 February 2020 – South Sudanese Civil War
SPLM-IO leader and former Vice President Riek Machar rejects a peace proposal by President Salva Kiir Mayardit, particularly the part calling to reduce the number of states from 32 to 10. (Al Jazeera)
13 February 2020 –
Around two dozen heavily armed men dressed in military fatigues storm a court building in El Progreso, north-western Honduras, freeing Alexander Mendoza, a senior leader of the MS-13 gang and killing four police officers. Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández offers a $80,000 reward for information leading to Mendoza's recapture. (BBC)
9 February 2020 – 2020 Irish general election
Counting of the first preference votes show Sinn Féin leading with 24.1% of the vote, ahead of ruling party Fine Gael and main opposition party Fianna Fáil, each with 22.1%. Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald claims victory, declaring that Ireland "is no longer a two-party system", and hopes to form a coalition government. (The Guardian)
6 February 2020 – War in Afghanistan (2001–present)
A U.S. civil contractor is kidnapped by the Taliban in eastern Afghanistan's Khost Province. A Taliban leader who declined to be named tells Reuters they had kidnapped an American in Khost but did not provide further details. (Reuters)
6 February 2020 – Yemeni Crisis (2011–present)
U.S. President Donald Trump announces that the United States military has killed al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) leader Qasim al-Raymi in a drone strike in Yemen. (BBC)
6 February 2020 – United States–Venezuela relations
Venezuelan security forces move six American Citgo executives from house arrest to El Helicoide prison in Caracas, prompting condemnation from the United States. The move comes shortly after Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó met with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House. (Reuters)
Updated: 20:33, 16 February 2020

Quote of the week

"Discriminating brevity is a law of the right biographic method."

Sidney Lee

In Principles of Biography, 1911

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