Henry Lawson, in full Henry Archibald Lawson, (born June 17, 1867, near Grenfell, New South Wales, Australia--died September 2, 1922, Abbotsford, New South Wales), Australian writer of short stories and balladlike verse noted for his realistic portrayals of bush life.He was the son of a former Norwegian sailor and an active feminist. Hampered by deafness from the time he was nine and by the poverty and unhappiness in his family, he left school at age 14 to help his father as a builder. About 1884 he moved to Sydney, where the Bulletin published his first stories and verses (1887-88). During those..
Shirley Hazzard, (born January 30, 1931, Sydney, Australia--died December 12, 2016, New York, New York, U.S.), Australian-born American writer whose novels and short stories are acclaimed for both their literary refinement and their emotional complexity.Hazzard lived in a number of places, among them Hong Kong, New Zealand, and Italy, before taking up residence in New York City at the age of 20. Her first short story, "Woollahra Road," was published in The New Yorker in 1961 and was included in her first collection, Cliffs of Fall (1963), which won her immediate critical praise. Her first..
Patrick White, in full Patrick Victor Martindale White, (born May 28, 1912, London, England--died September 30, 1990, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia), Australian novelist and playwright who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1973.White was born in London while his parents were there on a visit, and he returned to England (after 12 years in Australia) for schooling. He then worked for a time at his father's sheep ranch in Australia before returning to study modern languages at King's College, Cambridge. By the time he served in the Royal Air Force during World War II, he had already published..
Peter Carey, in full Peter Philip Carey, (born May 7, 1943, Bacchus Marsh, Victoria, Australia), Australian writer known for featuring the surreal in his short stories and novels.Carey attended the prestigious Geelong Grammar School and studied for a year at Monash University in Clayton, Victoria. He worked as an advertising copywriter and at various other odd jobs in Australia and England until 1988, when he became a full-time writer. His collections of short stories, The Fat Man in History (1974; U.K. title, Exotic Pleasures) and War Crimes (1979), exhibit many grotesque and macabre elements...
Colleen McCullough, married name Colleen Margaretta McCullough Robinson, (born June 1, 1937, Wellington, New South Wales, Australia--died January 29, 2015, Norfolk Island, Australia), Australian novelist who worked in a range of genres but was best known for her second novel, the sweeping romance The Thorn Birds (1977; television miniseries 1983), and for her Masters of Rome series (1990-2007), a painstakingly researched fictionalized account of Rome in the age of Julius Caesar.McCullough was born in the Australian Outback. Her family moved frequently, eventually settling in Sydney...
Kate Grenville, (born October 14, 1950, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia), Australian novelist whose works of historical fiction examine class, race, and gender in colonial and contemporary Australia.After earning a bachelor's degree in literature (1972) from the University of Sydney, Grenville began working as a film editor, writer, and script consultant. In the late 1970s she held various jobs in London and Paris and then went to the United States, where she received a master's degree in creative writing (1982) from the University of Colorado. Two years later she published her first..
John Leonard, American literary critic (born Feb. 25, 1939, Washington, D.C.--died Nov. 5, 2008, New York, N.Y.), with his stylistically ornate and humorous prose, was regarded as one of the preeminent cultural critics of his time. Though he was a lifelong leftist, Leonard began his journalism career in 1959 at the conservative National Review magazine. Later, during his tenure (1967-82) with the New York Times, he headed the newspaper's Sunday Book Review and served as a cultural critic. He was known best for his sweeping, verbose writings on literature and American culture, but he also wrote..
Norman Lindsay, in full Norman Alfred William Lindsay, (born Feb. 23, 1879, Creswick, Victoria, Australia--died Nov. 21, 1969, Springwood, New South Wales), Australian artist and novelist especially known for his political cartoons and sensual book illustrations.At 16 Lindsay began to draw for a Melbourne newspaper, and in 1901 he moved to New South Wales. He was for many years the chief cartoonist of the Sydney Bulletin. His major characteristics of imaginative power, grim strength, and a certain coarseness of style are apparent in his illustrations for editions of the works of Theocritus,..
Joseph Jacobs, (born Aug. 29, 1854, Sydney, N.S.W. [Australia]--died Jan. 30, 1916, Yonkers, N.Y., U.S.), Australian-born English folklore scholar, one of the most popular 19th-century adapters of children's fairy tales. He was also a historian of pre-expulsion English Jewry (The Jews of Angevin England, 1893), a historian of Jewish culture (Studies in Jewish Statistics, 1891), and a literary scholar.After attending primary school Sydney, Jacobs immigrated to England in 1872. A graduate (1876) of the University of Cambridge, Jacobs was secretary (1882-1900) of the Russo-Jewish Committee..
James Clavell, in full James Dumaresq Clavell, (born Oct. 10, 1924, Sydney, N.S.W., Australia--died Sept. 6, 1994, Vevey, Switz.), Australian author of popular action novels set within Asian cultures.Clavell grew up in England and later became a member of the Royal Artillery. A motorcycle injury caused him to leave the military in 1946. He developed an interest in film, and his first writings were screenplays, such as The Fly (1958) and The Great Escape (1963; with others). Although he continued to write screenplays and direct films for several years, in 1960 Clavell began writing novels as..
Judith Wright, in full Judith Arundell Wright, (born May 31, 1915, Armidale, New South Wales, Australia--died June 25, 2000, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory), Australian poet whose verse, thoroughly modern in idiom, is noted for skillful technique.After completing her education at the University of Sydney, Wright worked in an advertising agency and as a secretary at the University of Queensland, where she helped publish Meanjin, a literary journal. From 1949 she lectured part-time at various Australian universities, becoming honours tutor in English at the University of Queensland..
Morris West, in full Morris Langlo West, (born April 26, 1916, Melbourne, Vic., Australia--died Oct. 9, 1999, Sydney), Australian novelist noted for such best-sellers as The Devil's Advocate (1959) and The Shoes of the Fisherman (1963).Educated at the University of Melbourne, West taught modern languages and mathematics as a member of the Christian Brothers order in New South Wales and Tasmania from 1933 until he joined the army in 1939, having left the order before taking his final vows. In 1943 he was released from the army and shortly thereafter began working for the radio network of The Herald..
Miles Franklin, in full Stella Maria Sarah Miles Franklin, pseudonyms Brent of Bin Bin and Mrs. Ogniblat L'Artsau, (born Oct. 14, 1879, Talbingo, N.S.W., Australia--died Sept. 19, 1954, Sydney), Australian author of historical fiction who wrote from feminist and nationalist perspectives.Franklin grew up in isolated bush regions of New South Wales that were much like the glum setting of her first novel, My Brilliant Career (1901; filmed 1980), with its discontented, often disagreeable pioneer characters; yet, she was passionately attached to these regions. Franklin's feminism and her..
Janette Turner Hospital, pseudonym Alex Juniper, (born November 12, 1942, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia), Australian novelist and short-story writer who explored the political, cultural, and interpersonal boundaries that separate different peoples.Hospital graduated from the University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Australia (B.A., 1965), and Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada (M.A., 1973). She taught in several colleges and universities in Canada, the United States, and Australia and lived for a while in India. In childhood she had become aware of the clashes between..
Thomas Keneally, (born October 7, 1935, Sydney, Australia), Australian writer best known for his historical novels. Keneally's characters are gripped by their historical and personal past, and decent individuals are portrayed at odds with systems of authority.At age 17 Keneally entered a Roman Catholic seminary, but he left before ordination; the experience influenced his early fiction, including The Place at Whitton (1964) and Three Cheers for the Paraclete (1968). His reputation as a historical novelist was established with Bring Larks and Heroes (1967), about Australia's early..
Robert Hughes, in full Robert Studley Forrest Hughes, (born July 28, 1938, Sydney, Australia--died August 6, 2012, Bronx, New York, U.S.), Australian art critic and television personality known for his informed and highly opinionated criticism and his accessible and succinct writing style.After graduating (1956) from St. Ignatius College, a Jesuit school in Sydney, Hughes entered the University of Sydney. Though initially drawn to law and architecture, he flunked out of school after his first year. He abandoned his studies and, though not formally trained, began painting and drawing..