Adrienne Kennedy is a preeminent playwright, whose works confront issues of race and violence in American society. She appeared on the off-Broadway theater scene in 1964 with her Obie Award-winning play, Funnyhouse of a Negro, which was selected for the Black Norton Anthology. Kennedy has been hailed as one of the first African American playwrights to use avant-garde modes such as non-linear structure and surrealism. She is the recipient of three Obie Awards, including one for Lifetime Achievement (2008), as well as numerous other honors, such as the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Lifetime Achievement (2003). Kennedy is one of five playwrights included in the Norton Anthology of Literature.