Raquel or Rachel de Queiroz lived in Rio de Janeiro for several years during her childhood before returning to live in the Ceara region. She attended the College of the Immaculate Conception there, and after graduation worked as a newspaper journalist and composed modernist poems using the pseudonym "Rita de Queluz." She achieved fame beginning at age 20 with award-winning novels, and was particularly admired for her psychological insights into her characters and her details of social issues. She helped form the nucleus of the Communist Party in Brazil in the late 1920s and early 1930s. She was arrested for being a Communist in 1937 and some of her books were burned. Rachel de Queiroz was awarded the Oliveira Prize for her novel The Three Marias in 1939. She continued to write until 1950, when she entered a decades-long period without publishing. In 1992, she issued a family saga, Memorial de Maria Moura, which was adapted as a television miniseries. In 1977, she became the first woman named to the Brazilian Academy of Letters. Rachel de Queiroz also wrote a volume of memoirs published in 1998.