Francine Prose

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Francine Prose
Francine Prose BBF 2010 Shankbone.jpg
Prose at the 2010 Brooklyn Book Festival
Born (1947-04-01) 1 April 1947 (age 68)
Brooklyn, New York
Occupation Novelist
Nationality American

Francine Prose (born April 1, 1947) is an American writer who has written several novels, non-fiction books, and short story collections. She is a Visiting Professor of Literature at Bard College, and was formerly president of PEN American Center.

Life and career[edit]

Prose graduated from Radcliffe College in 1968. She received the PEN Translation Prize in 1988 and received a Guggenheim fellowship in 1991. Prose's novel The Glorious Ones has been adapted into a musical with the same title by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty. It ran at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City in the fall of 2007.

In March 2007, Prose was chosen to succeed American writer Ron Chernow beginning in April to serve a one-year term as president of PEN American Center,[1][2] a New York City-based literary society of writers, editors and translators that works to advance literature, defend free expression, and foster international literary fellowship. In March 2008, Prose ran unopposed for a second one-year term as PEN American Center president.[3] That same month, London artist Sebastian Horsley had been denied entry into the United States and PEN president Prose subsequently invited Horsley to speak at PENs annual festival of international literature in New York at the end of April 2008.[4] Prose was succeeded by philosopher and novelist Kwame Anthony Appiah as president of PEN in April 2009.[5][6]

Prose sat on the board of judges for the PEN/Newman's Own Award. Her novel, Blue Angel, a satire about sexual harassment on college campuses, was a finalist for the National Book Award. One of her novels, Household Saints, was adapted for a movie by Nancy Savoca.

American PEN criticism[edit]

During the 2015 controversy regarding American PEN's decision to honor Charlie Hebdo with its annual Freedom of Expression Courage Award, she, alongside Michael Ondaatje, Teju Cole, Peter Carey, Rachel Kushner and Taiye Selasi, withdrew from the group’s annual awards gala,[7] and signed a letter dissociating herself from the award [8] which was soon co-signed by more than 140 other PEN members.[9]

She wrote in the The Guardian that although she admired Charlie Hebdo's courage, and was horrified by the tragic murders, she did not believe that their work deserved an award. She favored honoring instead, Edward Snowden, Chelsea Manning, and journalists who risked or lost their lives reporting on wars in the Middle East. Additionally, she opined that the "narrative of the Charlie Hebdo murders – white Europeans killed in their offices by Muslim extremists – is one that feeds neatly into the cultural prejudices that have allowed our government to make so many disastrous mistakes in the Middle East [...] fan[ning] the flames of prejudice against Islam".[10] According to The Nation's Katha Pollitt, in a phone interview Prose stated that Charlie Hebdo's work was neither important nor interesting, and that she was offended by Charlie Hebdo’s crude cartoons and mockery of the religion of France’s marginalized Muslim community.[11] Prose was criticized for her views, most notably by Salman Rushdie, who in a letter to PEN described Prose and the five other authors who withdrew, as fellow travellers of "fanatical Islam, which is highly organised, well funded, and which seeks to terrify us all, Muslims as well as non-Muslims, into a cowed silence".[12]

Bibliography[edit]

Novels[edit]

Short story collections[edit]

Children's books[edit]

Nonfiction[edit]

Book reviews[edit]

  • April 17, 2005 "'The Peabody Sisters': Reflected Glory": The Peabody Sisters: Three Women Who Ignited American Romanticism, by Megan Marshall, Houghton Mifflin (ISBN 0-395-38992-5)
  • May 22, 2005 "'Oh the Glory of It All': Poor Little Rich Boy": Oh the Glory of It All, by Sean Wilsey, Penguin (ISBN 1-59420-051-3)
  • June 12, 2005 "'Marriage, a History': Lithuanians and Letts Do It," Marriage, a History: From Obedience to Intimacy, Or How Love Conquered Marriage, by Stephanie Coontz, Viking (ISBN 0-670-03407-X)
  • August 14, 2005 "'Eudora Welty': Not Just at the P.O.," New York Times: Eudora Welty: A Biography, by Suzanne Marrs, Harcourt Trade (ISBN 0-15-100914-7)
  • December 4, 2005 "Slayer of Taboos," New York Times: D. H. Lawrence: The Life of an Outsider, by John Worthen, Basic Books (ISBN 1-58243-341-0)
  • April 2, 2006 "Science Fiction," New York Times: The Book About Blanche and Marie, by Per Olov Enquist, Translated by Tiina Nunnally, Overlook (ISBN 1-58567-668-3)
  • July 9, 2006 "The Folklore of Exile," New York Times: Last Evenings on Earth, by Roberto Bolaño, Translated by Chris Andrews, New Directions (ISBN 0-8112-1634-9)
  • December 2008 "More is More: Roberto Bolaño's Magnum Opus", Harper's Magazine: 2666, by Roberto Bolaño, translated by Natasha Wimmer, Farrar, Straus and Giroux (ISBN 0-374-10014-4)
  • Dec/ Jan 2010 "Altar Ego," Bookforum: Ayn Rand and the World She Made, by Anne C. Heller, Nan A. Talese (ISBN 978-0-385-51399-9)

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]