Marina Warner

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Marina Warner
Born (1946-11-09) 9 November 1946 (age 68)
London, England
Occupation Mythographer, novelist, lecturer, professor
Website
marinawarner.com

Marina Sarah Warner, CBE, FBA FRSL (born 9 November 1946 in London, England) is a British novelist, short story writer, historian and mythographer. She is known for her many non-fiction books relating to feminism and myth. She has written for many publications over the years, including The London Review of Books, the New Statesman, Sunday Times, The Telegraph and Vogue.[1] She has also been a visiting professor, given lectures and taught on the faculties of many universities.[2] She resigned from her position as Professor in the Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex in 2014, sharply criticizing moves towards "for-profit business model" universities in the UK.[3]

Early life[edit]

She was born in London to an English father and Italian mother. Her paternal grandfather was the English cricketer Sir Pelham Warner.[4] She was brought up in Cairo, Brussels and in Berkshire, England, where she studied at St Mary's School, Ascot. She studied French and Italian at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford.[4] In 1971, she married William Shawcross, with whom she had a son Conrad Shawcross;[5] the couple later divorced.

Career[edit]

Her first book was The Dragon Empress: The Life and Times of Tz'u-hsi, Empress Dowager of China, 1835–1908 (1972), followed by the controversial Alone of All Her Sex: The Myth and the Cult of the Virgin Mary (1976), a provocative study of Roman Catholic veneration of the Virgin Mary. These were followed by Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism (1981) and Monuments & Maidens: The Allegory of the Female Form (1985).

Warner's novel The Lost Father was on the Booker Prize shortlist in 1988; her non-fiction book From the Beast to the Blonde: On Fairy Tales and Their Tellers won a Mythopoeic Award in 1996. The companion study of the male terror figure (from ancient myth and folklore to modern obsessions), No Go the Bogeyman: On Scaring, Lulling, and Making Mock, was published in 2000 and won the British Academy's Rose Mary Crawshay Prize that year. Warner's other novels include The Leto Bundle (2001) and Indigo (1992).[4] Her book Phantasmagoria (2006) traces the ways in which "the spirit" has been represented across different mediums, from waxworks to cinema. In December 2012, she presented a programme on BBC Radio Four about the Brothers Grimm. A collection of her writings about art was published Violette Editions in 2014 under the title The Symbol Gives Rise to Thought.[6]

She was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1984.[7] She gave the 1994 Reith Lectures on Managing Monsters and was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2008 Birthday Honours for services to literature.[8] She received an honorary doctorate (DLitt) from the University of Oxford on 21 June 2006. She also has honorary degrees from the Universities of Exeter (1995), York (1997) and St Andrews (1998), and honorary doctorates from Sheffield Hallam University (1995), the University of North London (1997), the Tavistock Institute (University of East London; 1999), Oxford University (2002), the Royal College of Art (2004), University of Kent (2005), the University of Leicester (2006), and King’s College London (2009).[4][9]

She was a professor in the Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex from 2004 until her resignation in 2014.[10] She took up a Chair in English and Creative Writing at Birkbeck College, University of London in September 2014. She is currently a Fellow of All Souls College Oxford and Chair of the judges of the Man Booker International Prize 2015.[11]

Honours and awards[edit]

Bibliography[edit]

  • The Dragon Empress: Life and Times of Tz'u-hsi 1835–1908 (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1972)
  • Alone of All Her Sex: The Myth and the Cult of the Virgin Mary (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1976) ISBN 0-330-28771-0
  • In a Dark Wood (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1977)
  • Queen Victoria Sketch Book (Macmillan, 1979)
  • The Crack in the Tea-Cup: Britain in the 20th Century (André Deutsch, 1979)
  • Joan of Arc: The Image of Female Heroism (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1981)
  • The Impossible Day (Methuen, 1981)
  • The Impossible Night (Methuen, 1981)
  • The Impossible Bath (Methuen, 1982)
  • The Impossible Rocket (Methuen, 1982)
  • The Skating Party (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1982)
  • The Wobbly Tooth (André Deutsch, 1984)
  • Monuments and Maidens: The Allegory of the Female Form (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1985)
  • The Lost Father (Chatto & Windus, 1988)
  • Into the Dangerous World (Chatto & Windus, 1989)
  • Imagining a Democratic Culture (Charter 88, 1991)
  • Indigo (Chatto & Windus, 1992)
  • L'Atalante (British Film Institute, 1993)
  • Mermaids in the Basement (Chatto & Windus, 1993)
  • Richard Wentworth (Thames & Hudson, 1993)
  • From the Beast to the Blonde: On Fairy Tales and Their Tellers (Chatto & Windus, 1994)
  • Managing Monsters: Six Myths of Our Time (Reith Lectures) (Vintage, 1994)
  • Wonder Tales: Six Stories of Enchantment (editor) (Chatto & Windus, 1994)
  • Six Myths Of Our Time: Little Angels, Little Monsters, Beautiful Beasts, and More (New York: Vintage Books, 1995)
  • Donkey Business Donkey Work: Magic and Metamorphoses in Contemporary Opera (University of Wales, 1996)
  • The Inner Eye: Art beyond the Visible (National Touring Exhibitions, 1996)
  • No Go the Bogeyman: Scaring, Lulling and Making Mock (Chatto & Windus, 1998)
  • The Leto Bundle (Chatto & Windus, 2001)
  • Fantastic Metamorphoses, Other Worlds (Oxford University Press, 2002)
  • Murderers I Have Known and Other Stories (Chatto & Windus, 2002)
  • Collected Poems by Sally Purcell: (preface) (Anvil Press, 2002)
  • Signs & Wonders: Essays on Literature and Culture (Chatto & Windus, 2003)
  • Phantasmagoria (Oxford University Press, 2006)
  • Stranger Magic: Charmed States & The Arabian Nights (Chatto & Windus, 2011)
  • The Symbol Gives Rise to Thought (Violette Editions, 2014)
  • "Once Upon a Time – A Short History of Fairy Tale" (Oxford University Press, 2014)

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Zeljka Marosevic, "Critical Thinking #5: Marina Warner", Prospect, 8 May 2014.
  2. ^ "Other activities", Marina Warner website.
  3. ^ Jonathan Brown, "Marina Warner compares UK university managers to 'Chinese communist enforcers'", The Independent, 3 September 2014.
  4. ^ a b c d British Council Contemporary Writers.
  5. ^ Rebecca Guinness, "London Artist Conrad Shawcross Makes His Mark in New York", Vanity Fair, 12 June 2009.
  6. ^ Vivian Sky Rehberg (ed.), The Symbol Gives Rise to Thought: Writings on Art by Marina Warner Volume 1, Violette Editions, 2014, ISBN 978-1-900828-39-0.
  7. ^ "Royal Society of Literature All Fellows". Royal Society of Literature. Retrieved 10 August 2010. 
  8. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 58729. p. 8. 14 June 2008.
  9. ^ "About Marina Warner", official website.
  10. ^ Marina Warner, "Diary", London Review of Books, Vol. 36 No. 17, 11 September 2014, pp. 42-43.
  11. ^ "Recent news", Official website. Retrieved 11 November 2014.
  12. ^ John Williams (14 January 2012). "National Book Critics Circle Names 2012 Award Finalists". New York Times. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  13. ^ John Williams (1 March 2013). "Robert A. Caro, Ben Fountain Among National Book Critics Circle Winners". New York Times. Retrieved 1 March 2013. 
  14. ^ "2013 Sheikh Zayed Book Award Winners Announced". zayedaward.ae. 3 April 2013. Retrieved 9 November 2013. 
  15. ^ "Sheikh Zayed Book Award promotes new category in Berlin". Khaleej Times. 10 September 2012. Retrieved 8 October 2012. 

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Elizabeth Wright
Karen O'Brien
Rose Mary Crawshay Prize
2000
and
Joanne Wilkes
Succeeded by
Annette Peach
Lucy Newlyn