1984 in literature
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In poetry: 1981 1982 1983 -1984- 1985 1986 1987
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The year 1984 in literature involved some significant events and new books.
- April 4 - The narrative of George Orwell's dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) begins, causing it to be widely discussed this year. G. K. Chesterton's The Napoleon of Notting Hill (1904) is also set in this year.
- June 16 - Cirque du Soleil founded in Baie-Saint-Paul, Quebec, by two former street performers, Guy Laliberté and Gilles Ste-Croix.
- July - Tom Wolfe's novel The Bonfire of the Vanities begins serialization in Rolling Stone.
- December 19 - Ted Hughes' appointment as Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom in succession to Sir John Betjeman is announced, Philip Larkin having turned down the post.
- Prvoslav Vujčić's second collection of poems, Kastriranje vetra ("Castration of the wind"), written during a week's imprisonment in Tuzla for criticising the state, is prohibited in Yugoslavia.
- Of Mice and Men, the 1937 novel by John Steinbeck, is removed from Tennessee public schools when the School Board Chair promises to remove all "filthy books" from public school curricula and libraries.
- Redu in Belgium becomes a book town.
- Saqi Books, independent U.K. publisher, is founded by Mai Ghoussoub.
- Warren Adler - Random Hearts
- Kingsley Amis - Stanley and the Women
- Martin Amis - Money
- Jeffrey Archer - First Among Equals
- Richard Bachman - Thinner (nom de plume for Stephen King)
- J. G. Ballard - Empire of the Sun
- Iain Banks - The Wasp Factory
- Julian Barnes - Flaubert's Parrot
- J. J. Benitez - Caballo de Troya
- Thomas Bernhard - Woodcutters (Holzfällen)
- Michael Bishop - One Winter in Eden and Who Made Stevie Crye?
- Simon Brett - A Shock to the System
- David Brin - The Practice Effect
- Anita Brookner - Hotel du Lac
- Sandra Cisneros - The House on Mango Street
- Tom Clancy - The Hunt for Red October
- Bernard & Judy Cornwell (as Susannah Kells) - Fallen Angels
- Marguerite Duras - L'Amant
- Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird -Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (comic book)
- Louise Erdrich - Love Medicine
- Howard Fast - The Outsider
- Leon Forrest - Two Wings to Veil My Face
- Frederick Forsyth - The Fourth Protocol
- John Gardner - Role of Honour
- William Gibson - Neuromancer
- Alasdair Gray - 1982, Janine
- Kent Haruf - The Tie That Binds
- Frank Herbert - Heretics of Dune
- David Hughes - The Pork Butcher
- John Jakes - Love and War
- Stephen King, Peter Straub - The Talisman
- Russell Kirk - Watchers at the Strait Gate
- Jaan Kross - Professor Martens' Departure (Professor Martensi ärasõit)
- Milan Kundera - The Unbearable Lightness of Being (first published in French as L'Insoutenable légèreté de l'être)
- Robert Ludlum - The Aquitaine Progression
- Norman Mailer - Tough Guys Don't Dance
- Ruth Manning-Sanders - A Book of Magic Horses
- Salomé Mitiarjuk Nappaaluk - Sanaaq
- Robert B. Parker - Valediction
- Ellis Peters
- Mario Puzo - The Sicilian
- Thomas Pynchon - Slow Learner: Early Stories
- Dr. Seuss - The Butter Battle Book
- Bob Shea and Robert Anton Wilson - The Illuminatus! Trilogy (collected edition)
- Michael Slade - Headhunter
- Danielle Steel - Full Circle
- Neal Stephenson - The Big U (debut novel)
- Robert Swindells - Brother in the Land
- John Updike - The Witches of Eastwick
- Gore Vidal - Lincoln
- Tim Winton - Shallows
- Janusz Zajdel - Paradyzja
- Howard Barker - Scenes from an Execution
- Dario Fo - Elizabeth: Almost by Chance a Woman
- Beth Henley - The Miss Firecracker Contest
- Elfriede Jelinek - Krankheit oder Moderne Frauen
- Joshua Sobol - Ghetto
- Tom Stoppard - Rough Crossing
- John Ashbery - A Wave
- Louise Erdrich - Jacklight
- Christopher Gilbert - Across the Mutual Landscape
- Paulette Jiles - Celestial Navigation
- Sharon Olds - The Dead and the Living
- Morrill Cody & Hugh Ford - The Women of Montparnasse, the Americans in Paris.
- Roald Dahl - Boy an autobiography
- Louise Hay - You Can Heal Your Life
- Lee Iacocca - Iacocca: An Autobiography.
- Steven Levy - Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution.
- Derek Parfit - Reasons and Persons.
- Joan Peters - From Time Immemorial: The Origins of the Arab-Jewish Conflict over Palestine.
- Herbert Jay Stern - Judgment in Berlin.
- May 9 – Ezra Klein, American journalist and columnist
- May 21 – Jackson Pearce, American young-adult novelist
- June 5 – Simon Rich, American humorist, novelist and screenwriter
- July 12 – Amanda Hocking, American fantasy novelist
- August 8 – Owen Jones, English columnist and author and commentator
- December 10 – Helen Oyeyemi, British novelist and playwright
- February 12 – Julio Cortázar, Argentine novelist, short story writer and essayist (born 1914)
- February 21 – Michail Aleksandrovich Sholokhov, Russian writer, Nobel Prize laureate (born 1905)
- February 22 – Jessamyn West, American novelist (born 1902)
- March 4 – Odd Bang-Hansen, Norwegian novelist and children's writer (born 1908)
- March 12 – Arnold Ridley, English playwright and actor (born 1896)
- March 26 – Branko Ćopić, Bosnian Serb writer (suicide, born 1915)
- April 1 – Elizabeth Goudge, English writer (born 1900)
- April 15 – Alexander Trocchi, Scottish writer (born 1925)
- April 21 – Manuel Mujica Láinez, Argentine novelist (born 1910)
- May 16 – Irwin Shaw, American playwright, screenwriter, novelist, and short story writer (born 1913)
- May 19 – John Betjeman, English poet laureate (born 1906)
- June 10 – Halide Nusret Zorlutuna, Turkish poet and novelist (born 1901)
- June 30 – Lillian Hellman, American playwright (born 1905)
- July 6 – Denys Val Baker, Welsh novelist and short story writer (born 1917)
- August 14 – J. B. Priestley, English novelist and playwright (born 1894)
- August 25 – Truman Capote (Truman Streckfus Persons), American fiction writer (born 1924)
- September 7 – Liam O'Flaherty, Irish novelist and short story writer (born 1896)
- November 6 – Gastón Suárez, Bolivian novelist and dramatist (born 1929)
- November 10 – Xavier Herbert, Australian novelist (born 1901)
- November 12 – Chester Himes, American writer (born 1909)
- December 6 – Gray Barker, American writer on paranormal (born 1925)
- December 14 – Vicente Aleixandre, Spanish writer, Nobel Prize laureate (born 1898)
- The Australian/Vogel Literary Award: Kate Grenville, Lilian's Story
- Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry: Les Murray, The People's Other World
- Miles Franklin Award: Tim Winton, Shallows
- See 1984 Governor General's Awards for a complete list of winners and finalists for those awards.
- Prix Goncourt: Marguerite Duras, L'Amant
- Prix Médicis French: Bernard-Henri Lévy, Le Diable en tête
- Prix Médicis International: Elsa Morante, Aracoeli
- Booker Prize: Anita Brookner, Hotel du Lac
- Carnegie Medal for children's literature: Margaret Mahy, The Changeover
- Cholmondeley Award: Michael Baldwin, Michael Hofmann, Carol Rumens
- Eric Gregory Award: Martyn Crucefix, Mick Imlah, Jamie McKendrick, Bill Smith, Carol Ann Duffy, Christopher Meredith, Peter Armstrong, Iain Bamforth
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction: J. G. Ballard, Empire of the Sun, and Angela Carter, Nights at the Circus
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for biography: Lyndall Gordon, Virginia Woolf: A Writer's Life
- Whitbread Best Book Award: James Buchan, A Parish of Rich Women
- Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize: Arthur Smith, Elegy on Independence Day
- Frost Medal: Jack Stadler
- Nebula Award: William Gibson, Neuromancer
- Newbery Medal for children's literature: Beverly Cleary, Dear Mr. Henshaw
- Pulitzer Prize for Drama: David Mamet, Glengarry Glen Ross
- Pulitzer Prize for Fiction: William J. Kennedy - Ironweed
- Pulitzer Prize for Poetry: Mary Oliver: American Primitive
- Premio Nadal: José de Tomás García - La otra orilla de la droga
- Bélanger, Brigitte (1999-04-14). "Cirque du Soleil". Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada.
- Howard, Philip (1984-12-20). "'True poet' Ted Hughes is Laureate". The Times (62017) (London). p. 1.
- "Of Mice and Men, 1937 - Information about the Book". SwissEduc.