1977 in literature
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This article contains information about the literary events and publications of 1977.
- February 20 – An episode of Doctor on the Go, co-written by Douglas Adams and Graham Chapman, marks the beginning of Adams' career as a writer for BBC radio.
- March 4 – Andrés Caicedo commits suicide by overdose, aged 25, about a month after the publication of his novel ¡Que viva la música! ("Let Music Live!", translated as Liveforever) is published in his hometown of Cali, Colombia.
- April 27 – Héctor Germán Oesterheld, Argentine comic book writer born 1919), is kidnapped by the military authorities; he is believed to have died in detention a few months later.
- July 11 – The English magazine Gay News is found guilty of blasphemous libel for publishing a homoerotic poem, "The Love That Dares to Speak Its Name" by James Kirkup, in a case (Whitehouse v Lemon) at the Old Bailey in London, on behalf of Mary Whitehouse's National Viewers and Listeners Association. John Mortimer appears for the defence. It is the first such prosecution since 1921 and will be the last before the offense is abolished in 2008.
- September 15 – Christopher Tolkien, with Guy Gavriel Kay, completes and publishes his late father's work, The Silmarillion.
- Fall – Philosophy and Literature appears as an academic journal founded at Johns Hopkins University. It explores connections between literary and philosophical studies, presenting ideas on the aesthetics of literature, critical theory, and the philosophical interpretation of literature.
- October – Norman Mailer punches Gore Vidal in the face at a New York City party.
- December – Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o and Ngugi wa Mirii are detained in Kamiti Maximum Security Prison, Kenya, six weeks after the première of their political Kikuyu language play Ngaahika Ndeenda (I Will Marry When I Want) at the open-air Kamiriithu Community Education and Cultural Centre. While imprisoned, Ngũgĩ will write the first modern novel in Kikuyu, Devil on the Cross (Caitaani mũtharaba-Inĩ), on prison-issue toilet paper.
- Ales Adamovich, Janka Bryl and Uladzimir Kalesnik – Я из огненной деревни (Belarusian: Я з вогненнай вёскі; Out of the Fire)
- Jorge Amado – Tieta do Agreste
- Jay Anson – The Amityville Horror
- Margaret Atwood – Dancing Girls
- Richard Bach – Illusions
- Richard Bachman – Rage
- Leland Bardwell – Girl on a Bicycle
- Caroline Blackwood – Great Granny Webster
- Gerd Brantenberg – Egalias døtre (The Daughters of Egalia, 1985, also Egalia's Daughters, 1986)
- Terry Brooks – The Sword of Shannara
- Andrés Caicedo – ¡Que viva la música!
- J. M. Coetzee – In the Heart of the Country
- Robin Cook – Coma
- Robert Coover – The Public Burning
- Basil Copper – And Afterward, the Dark
- L. Sprague de Camp
- L. Sprague de Camp and Lin Carter – Conan of Aquilonia
- Michel Déon – The Foundling's War
- Philip K. Dick – A Scanner Darkly
- Joan Didion – A Book of Common Prayer
- Buchi Emecheta – The Slave Girl
- Howard Fast – The Immigrants
- Timothy Findley – The Wars
- Leon Forrest – The Bloodworth Orphans
- John Fowles – Daniel Martin
- Marilyn French – The Women's Room
- Jane Gardam – Bilgewater
- Pauline Gedge – Child of the Morning
- Richard Gordon – The Invisible Victory
- Günter Grass – The Flounder (Der Butt)
- Mark Helprin – Refiner's Fire
- Hammond Innes – The Big Footprints
- Erica Jong – How to Save Your Own Life
- Elias Khoury – الجبل الصغير (al-Jabal al-saghir, The Little Mountain)
- Stephen King – The Shining
- Derek Lambert – Blackstone on Broadway
- John le Carré – The Honourable Schoolboy
- Ernest Lehman – The French Atlantic Affair
- Robert Ludlum – The Chancellor Manuscript
- Brian Lumley – The Horror at Oakdeene and Others
- George R. R. Martin – Dying of the Light
- Colleen McCullough – The Thorn Birds
- Larry McMurtry – Terms of Endearment
- Robert Merle – Fortune de France
- Toni Morrison – Song of Solomon
- Iris Murdoch – The Sea, the Sea
- Péter Nádas – The End of a Family Story
- John Neal – The Genius of John Neal: Selections from His Writings (edited by Benjamin Lease and Hans-Joachim Lang)
- Patrick O'Brian – The Mauritius Command
- Ellis Peters – A Morbid Taste for Bones
- Barbara Pym – Quartet in Autumn
- Ruth Rendell – A Judgement in Stone
- Alun Richards – Ennal's Point
- Harold Robbins – Dreams Die First
- Paul Scott – Staying On
- Erich Segal – Oliver's Story
- Irwin Shaw – Beggarman, Thief
- M. P. Shiel – Prince Zaleski and Cummings King Monk
- Sidney Sheldon – Bloodline
- Leslie Marmon Silko - Ceremony
- Elizabeth Smart – A Bonus
- Botho Strauß – Devotion
- Remy Sylado – Gali Lobang Gila Lobang
- Craig Thomas – Firefox
- J. R. R. Tolkien (died 1973) – The Silmarillion
- Melvin Van Peebles – The True American, A Folk Fable
- Mario Vargas Llosa – Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter (La tía Julia y el escribidor)
- P. G. Wodehouse (died 1975) – Sunset at Blandings
- Christopher Wood – James Bond, The Spy Who Loved Me
Children and young people
- Richard Adams – The Plague Dogs
- Sandra Boynton – Hippos Go Berserk!
- Helen Cresswell – The Bagthorpe Saga
- Willi Glasauer – Le Journal Enseveli (The Buried Newspaper)
- Rumer Godden – The Rocking Horse Secret
- Shirley Hughes – Dogger
- Diana Wynne Jones – Charmed Life
- Ruth Manning-Sanders – A Book of Enchantments and Curses
- C. L. Moore (with Alicia Austin) – Black God's Shadow
- Bill Peet – Big Bad Bruce
- Maurice Sendak – Seven Little Monsters
- Barbara Smucker – Underground to Canada (also Runaway to Freedom: A Story of the Underground Railway)
- Peter Spier – Noah's Ark
- Robert Bolt – State of Revolution
- Roger Hall – Middle-Age Spread
- Tony Harrison (adapter) – The Mysteries
- Mike Leigh – Abigail's Party
- Heiner Müller – Die Hamletmaschine (written)
- Mary O'Malley – Once a Catholic
- Dennis Potter – Brimstone and Treacle
- Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o and Ngugi wa Mirii – Ngaahika Ndeenda
- Alfred D. Chandler, Jr. – The Visible Hand: The Managerial Revolution in American Business
- Bruce Chatwin – In Patagonia
- Robert Coles – Children of Crisis
- Esther Deans – Esther Deans' Gardening Book: Growing Without Digging
- Len Deighton – Fighter: the True Story of the Battle of Britain
- Patrick Leigh Fermor – A Time Of Gifts
- Jim Fixx – The Complete Book of Running
- Michael Herr – Dispatches
- Edith Holden (died 1920) – The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady
- R. C. Majumdar – The History and Culture of the Indian People, vol. 11
- Bharati Mukherjee and Clark Blaise – Days and Nights in Calcutta
- V. S. Naipaul – India: A Wounded Civilization
- David M. Potter – The Impending Crisis, 1848–1861
- E. F. Schumacher – A Guide for the Perplexed
- A. T. Q. Stewart – The Narrow Ground: Aspects of Ulster 1609–1969
- Lawrence Stone – The Family, Sex and Marriage in England, 1500–1800
- Peter Ustinov – Dear Me
- February 21 – Jonathan Safran Foer, American novelist
- May 2 – Alessandro D'Avenia, Italian writer
- August 24 – John Green, American author and YouTube vlogger
- October 16 – Laura Wade, English playwright
- September 5 – Tena Štivičić, Croatian playwright
- September 15 – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Nigerian novelist
- November 12 – Richelle Mead, American young-adult novelist
- January 14 – Anaïs Nin, French-Cuban erotic novelist and diarist (born 1903)
- January 18 – Carl Zuckmayer, German playwright (born 1896)
- January 26 – William Glynne-Jones, Welsh novelist and children's writer (born 1907)
- February 19 – Anthony Crosland, British author and politician (born 1918)
- February 27 – John Dickson Carr, American crime novelist (born 1906)
- March 4
- March 15 – Hubert Aquin, French Canadian novelist, essayist and political activist (suicide, born 1929))
- April 7 – Jim Thompson, American fiction writer (born 1906)
- April 11 – Jacques Prévert, French poet and screenwriter (born 1900)
- May 9 – James Jones, American novelist (heart failure, born 1921)
- July 2 – Vladimir Nabokov, Russian/American novelist (born 1899)
- August 13 – Henry Williamson, English naturalist and novelist (born 1895)
- August 20 – Gurbaksh Singh, Punjabi novelist (born 1914)
- August 26 – H. A. Rey, German-born American children's writer and illustrator (born 1898)
- September 4 – E. F. Schumacher, German-born economist (born 1911)
- September 12 – Robert Lowell, American poet (heart attack, born 1917)
- October 27 – James M. Cain, American novelist and newspaperman (born 1892)
- November 10 – Dennis Wheatley, English occult novelist (born 1897)
- November 30
- December 9 – Clarice Lispector, Brazilian novelist (ovarian cancer, born 1920)
- December 22 – Frank Thiess, German novelist (born 1890)
- Prix Goncourt: Didier Decoin, John l'enfer
- Prix Médicis French: Michel Butel, L'Autre Amour
- Prix Médicis International: Héctor Bianciotti, Le Traité des saisons – Argentina
- Booker Prize: Paul Mark Scott, Staying On
- Carnegie Medal for children's literature: Gene Kemp, The Turbulent Term of Tyke Tiler
- Eric Gregory Award: Tony Flynn, Michael Vince, David Cooke, Douglas Marshall, Melissa Murray
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction: John le Carré, The Honourable Schoolboy
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for biography: George Painter, Chateaubriand: Volume 1 – The Longed-For Tempests
- Knighthood for services to the theatre: Peter Hall
- Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry: Norman Nicholson
- Whitbread Best Book Award: Beryl Bainbridge, Injury Time
- American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal for the Novel, Saul Bellow
- Nebula Award: Frederik Pohl, Gateway
- Newbery Medal for children's literature: Mildred D. Taylor, Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
- Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science: Gerard K. O'Neill, The High Frontier: Human Colonies in Space
- Pulitzer Prize for Drama: Michael Cristofer, The Shadow Box
- Pulitzer Prize for Fiction: no award given
- Pulitzer Prize for Poetry: James Merrill, Divine Comedies
- Pulitzer Prize for History: David M. Potter: The Impending Crisis, 1841-1861 (Completed and edited by Don E. Fehrenbacher).
- Pulitzer Prize for Biography: John E. Mack: A Prince of Our Disorder: The Life of T.E. Lawrence
Rest of the World
- Miles Franklin Award: Ruth Park, Swords and Crowns and Rings
- Premio Nadal: José Asenjo Sedano, Conversación sobre la guerra
- Viareggio Prize: Davide Lajolo, Veder l'erba dalla parte delle radici
- Douglas McCall (12 November 2013). Monty Python: A Chronology, 1969-2012, 2d ed. McFarland. pp. 55–. ISBN 978-0-7864-7811-8.
- El Valle del Cauca. Fundación Grupo 80. 1983. p. 178.
- M. Elizabeth Ginway; J. Andrew Brown; J. Brown (5 December 2012). Latin American Science Fiction: Theory and Practice. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 179. ISBN 978-1-137-28122-7.
- "11 July 1977: Gay paper guilty of blasphemy". BBC News. Archived from the original on 7 March 2008. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
- Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 (England and Wales).
- United States Commission on Civil Rights (1978). Battered Women: Issues of Public Policy : a Consultation Sponsored by the United States Commission on Civil Rights. Commission on Civil Rights. p. 427.
- Richard D. Mullen (1992). On Philip K. Dick: 40 Articles from Science-fiction Studies. SF-TH Incorporated. p. 6. ISBN 978-0-9633169-0-5.
- Ellen Pifer; Professor of English and Comparative Literature Ellen Pifer (1986). Critical Essays on John Fowles. G.K. Hall. p. 11. ISBN 978-0-8161-8759-1.
- Watts, Edward; Carlson, David J., eds. (2012). John Neal and Nineteenth Century American Literature and Culture. Lewisburg, Pennsylvania: Bucknell University Press. p. 296. ISBN 9781611484205.
- Smith, Dai (2004-06-19). "Alun Richards (obituary)". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
- Hahn, Daniel (2015). The Oxford Companion to Children's Literature (2nd ed.). Oxford. University Press. p. 3. ISBN 9780198715542.
- Die Kaapse bibliotekaris: The Cape librarian. Library Service. 1979. p. 6.
- "Programmes | Newsnight | Review | Abigail's Party". BBC News. 2002-07-25. Retrieved 2012-06-29.
- Directory of Playwrights, Directors, Designers. John Offord. 1983. p. 87.
- Parsons, Nicholas (1985). The Book of Literary Lists. London: Sidgwick & Jackson. ISBN 0-283-99171-2.
- "D'Avenia Alessandro - Biografie scrittori, poeti, artisti - Wuz.it". www.wuz.it. Archived from the original on January 13, 2015. Retrieved August 2, 2015.
- Braun, Eric (2015-01-01). John Green: Star Author, Vlogbrother, and Nerdfighter. Lerner Publications. p. 40. ISBN 9781467772617.
- Anaïs Nin (1994). Conversations with Anaïs Nin. Univ. Press of Mississippi. p. 18. ISBN 978-0-87805-719-1.
- Ian Herbert (1981). Who's who in the Theatre: A Biographical Record of the Contemporary Stage. Gale Research Company. p. 749. ISBN 978-0-8103-0235-8.
- Great Britain. Diplomatic Service Administration Office (1994). The Diplomatic Service List. H.M. Stationery Office. p. 83.
- Winks; Robin W. Winks (1998). Mystery and Suspense Writers: The Literature of Crime, Detection, and Espionage. Scribner's Sons. p. 127. ISBN 978-0-684-80519-1.
- Gale Cengage (2002). Modern French Poets. Gale Group. p. 352. ISBN 978-0-7876-5252-4.
- Anne Williamson (1995). Henry Williamson: Tarka and the Last Romantic. Alan Sutton. p. 333. ISBN 978-0-7509-0639-5.
- The Sikh Review. Sikh Cultural Centre. 1977. p. 2.
- Robert Lowell (1988). Robert Lowell, Interviews and Memoirs. University of Michigan Press. p. 11. ISBN 0-472-10089-0.
- France. French Embassy, Press and Information Division. 1977. p. 8.