1988 in literature
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This article contains information about the literary events and publications of 1988.
- March 7 – Nine thousand movie and television writers of the Writers' Guild of America go on strike a day after rejecting a final offer from producers.
- May 28–31 – The first Hay Festival of literature is held in the Welsh Marches.
- June – The Panasonic Globe Theatre, Tokyo, opens with an Ingmar Bergman production of Shakespeare's Hamlet.
- August 7 – The Writers Guild of America strike formally ends.
- November 15 – Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 reforms copyright law in the United Kingdom, with special provision for Great Ormond Street Hospital for sick children to benefit in perpetuity from royalties in J. M. Barrie's 1904 play Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up.
- unknown date – Vasily Grossman's 1960 novel Life and Fate (Жизнь и судьба) is published for the first time in the Soviet Union, in the magazine Oktyabr.
- Caio Fernando Abreu – Os dragões não conhecem o paraíso (Dragons, short stories)
- Margaret Atwood – Cat's Eye
- Bernardo Atxaga – Obabakoak (short stories)
- J. G. Ballard
- Iain M. Banks – The Player of Games
- Clive Barker
- Thomas Berger – The Houseguest
- Michael Blake – Dances with Wolves
- Dionne Brand – Sans Souci and Other Stories
- Ray Bradbury – The Toynbee Convector (short story)
- Orson Scott Card – Treason
- Peter Carey – Oscar and Lucinda
- Roger Caron – Jojo
- Michael Chabon – The Mysteries of Pittsburgh
- Tom Clancy – The Cardinal of the Kremlin
- Paulo Coelho – The Alchemist
- Hugh Cook – The Walrus and the Warwolf
- Bernard Cornwell
- Sharpe's Rifles
- Jim Crace – The Gift of Stones
- Tsitsi Dangarembga – Nervous Conditions
- Robertson Davies – The Lyre of Orpheus
- L. Sprague de Camp and Catherine Crook de Camp – The Stones of Nomuru
- Don DeLillo – Libra
- Dương Thu Hương – Paradise of the Blind (Những thiên đường mù)
- Allan W. Eckert – The Dark Green Tunnel
- Umberto Eco – Foucault's Pendulum (Il pendolo di Foucault)
- John Gardner – Scorpius
- Thomas Harris – The Silence of the Lambs
- Joseph Heller – Picture This
- Alan Hollinghurst – The Swimming Pool Library
- William Horwood – Duncton Wood
- Hamid Ismailov – Собрание Утончённых
- Judith Krantz – 'Til We Meet Again
- Doris Lessing – The Fifth Child
- Bernard-Henri Lévy – Les Derniers Jours de Charles Baudelaire
- Robert Ludlum – The Icarus Agenda
- Javier Marías – Todas las almas (All Souls)
- David Markson – Wittgenstein's Mistress
- James A. Michener – Alaska
- Robert B. Parker – Crimson Joy
- Belva Plain – Tapestry
- Ellis Peters
- Richard Powers – Prisoner's Dilemma
- Tim Powers – On Stranger Tides
- Terry Pratchett
- Christoph Ransmayr – The Last World
- Jean Raspail – Blue Island
- Alina Reyes – The Butcher
- David Adams Richards – Nights Below Station Street
- Salman Rushdie – The Satanic Verses
- Richard Russo – The Risk Pool
- R. A. Salvatore – The Crystal Shard (first of The Icewind Dale Trilogy)
- Sidney Sheldon – The Sands of Time
- Clark Ashton Smith – A Rendezvous in Averoigne
- Danielle Steel – Zoya
- Thomas Sullivan – The Phases of Harry Moon
- Nikolai Tolstoy – The Coming of the King
- Anne Tyler – Breathing Lessons
- Andrew Vachss – Blue Belle
- Mario Vargas Llosa – In Praise of the Stepmother (Elogio de la madrastra)
- Banana Yoshimoto – Kitchen
Children and young people
- Chris Van Allsburg – Two Bad Ants
- Martin Auer – Now, Now, Markus (Bimbo und sein Vogel)
- Lyll Becerra de Jenkins - The Honorable Prison
- Roald Dahl – Matilda
- Janice Elliott – The Empty Throne (second in The Sword and the Dream series)
- Virginia Hamilton (with Barry Moser) – In the Beginning: Creation Stories from Around the World
- William Joyce – Robots
- Elizabeth Laird – Red Sky in the Morning (also as Loving Ben)
- Geraldine McCaughrean – A Pack of Lies
- Patricia McKissack – Mirandy and Brother Wind
- Beatrice Schenk de Regniers (with Eva Moore et al.) – Sing a Song of Popcorn: Every Child's Book of Poems
- Christopher Tolkien (with J. R. R. Tolkien and Alan Lee) – The Return of the Shadow
- P. L. Travers – Mary Poppins and the House Next Door
- Manuel Vázquez Montalbán (with Willi Glasauer) – Escenas de la Literatura Universal y Retratos de Grandes Autores (Scenes from World Literature and Portraits of Greatest Authors)
- Alan Bennett – Single Spies (stage versions of An Englishman Abroad and A Question of Attribution)
- Thomas Bernhard – Heldenplatz
- David Henry Hwang – M. Butterfly
- Ann-Marie MacDonald – Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet)
- Peter Shaffer – Lettice and Lovage
- Tom Stoppard – Hapgood
- Botho Strauß – Seven Doors (Sieben Türen)
- Giannina Braschi – El imperio de los sueños (Empire of Dreams)
- James Merrill – The Inner Room
- Grazyna Miller – "Curriculum"
- David Herbert Donald – Look Homeward: A Life of Thomas Wolfe
- Albert Goldman – The Lives of John Lennon
- Sita Ram Goel – Catholic Ashrams
- Stephen Hawking – A Brief History of Time
- K. S. Lal – The Mughal Harem
- Patrick Macnee and Marie Cameron – Blind in One Ear: The Avenger Returns (Macnee's autobiography)
- Michel Maffesoli – The Time of the Tribes (Le Temps des tribus)
- Lou Mollgaard – Kiki: Reine de la Montparnasse
- Rosalind Miles – The Women's History of the World
- Alanna Nash – Golden Girl: The Story of Jessica Savitch
- Lady Violet Powell – The Life of a Provincial Lady: A Study of E. M. Delafield and Her Works
- Philip Roth – The Facts: A Novelist's Autobiography
- Miranda Seymour – A Ring of Conspirators: Henry James and his Literary Circle, 1895–1915
- Joe Simpson – Touching the Void
- William L. Sullivan – Listening for Coyote
- Frédéric Vitoux – Céline: A Biography (La Vie de Céline)
- May 18 – Luu Quang Minh, Vietnamese writer and singer
- October 14 – Ocean Vuong, Vietnamese-American poet
- unknown date – Fiona Mozley, English novelist and medievalist
- February 3 – Robert Duncan, American poet (born 1919)
- February 6 – Marghanita Laski, English biographer, novelist and broadcaster (born 1915)
- February 28 – Kylie Tennant, Australian novelist, playwright and historian (born 1912)
- March 19 – Máirtín Ó Direáin, Irish-language poet (born 1910)
- April 12 – Alan Paton, South African novelist and political activist (born 1903)
- April 15 – Modest Morariu, Romanian poet, essayist, prose writer and translator (born 1929)
- April 21 – I. A. L. Diamond, Bessarabian-born American comedy writer (born 1920)
- May 3 – Premendra Mitra, Bengali poet, novelist and short story writer (born 1904)
- May 8 – Robert A. Heinlein, American science fiction writer (born 1907)
- May 10 – Shen Congwen, Chinese writer (born 1902)
- May 23 – Aya Kitō, Japanese diarist (born 1962)
- June 10 – Louis L'Amour, American western novelist (born 1908)
- June 21 – George Ivașcu, Romanian journalist, literary critic, and communist militant (born 1911)
- July 10 – Enrique Lihn, Chilean poet, playwright, and novelist (cancer, born 1929)
- July 12 – Joshua Logan, American stage and film writer (born 1908)
- August 2 – Raymond Carver, American short-story writer and poet (born 1938)
- August 20 – Joan G. Robinson, English children's writer and illustrator (born 1910)
- August 23 – Menotti Del Picchia, Brazilian poet, journalist and painter (born 1892)
- August 28 – Max Shulman, American novelist, short-story writer and dramatist (born 1919)
- September 28 – Charles Addams, American cartoonist (born 1912)
- October 1 – Sacheverell Sitwell, English art critic (born 1897)
- October 10 – Bhabani Bhattacharya, Indian fiction writer (born 1906)
- October 12 – Ruth Manning-Sanders, British children's author (born 1895)
- October 16 – Christian Matras, Faroese poet (born 1900)
- November 2 – Stewart Parker, Northern Irish poet and playwright (cancer, born 1941)
- December 16 – Frank Bonham, American western and young adult novelist (born 1914)
- The Australian/Vogel Literary Award: Tom Flood, Oceana Fine
- C. J. Dennis Prize for Poetry: Judith Beveridge, The Domesticity of Giraffes
- Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry: Judith Beveridge, The Domesticity of Giraffes
- Mary Gilmore Prize: Judith Beveridge, The Domesticity of Giraffes
- Miles Franklin Award: No award presented
- See 1988 Governor General's Awards for a complete list of winners and finalists for those awards.
- Grand Prix de Littérature Policière International: Andrew Vachss, Strega
- Prix Goncourt: Érik Orsenna, L'Exposition coloniale
- Prix Médicis French: Christiane Rochefort, La Porte du fond
- Prix Médicis International: Thomas Bernhard, les Maîtres anciens
- Booker Prize: Peter Carey, Oscar and Lucinda
- Carnegie Medal for children's literature: Geraldine McCaughrean, A Pack of Lies
- Cholmondeley Award: John Heath-Stubbs, Sean O'Brien, John Whitworth
- Eric Gregory Award: Michael Symmons Roberts, Gwyneth Lewis, Adrian Blackledge, Simon Armitage, Robert Crawford
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction: Piers Paul Read, A Season in the West
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for biography: Brian McGuinness, Wittgenstein, A Life: Young Ludwig (1889–1921)
- Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry: Derek Walcott
- Whitbread Best Book Award: Paul Sayer, The Comforts of Madness
- The Sunday Express Book of the Year: David Lodge, Nice Work
- Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize: Maxine Scates, Toluca Street
- Aiken Taylor Award for Modern American Poetry: Richard Wilbur
- Frost Medal: Carolyn Kizer
- National Book Award for Fiction: Pete Dexter, Paris Trout
- National Book Critics Circle: Bharati Mukherjee, The Middleman and Other Stories
- Nebula Award: Lois McMaster Bujold, Falling Free
- Newbery Medal for children's literature: Russell Freedman, Lincoln: A Photobiography
- PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction: T. Coraghessan Boyle, World's End
- Pulitzer Prize for Drama: Alfred Uhry, Driving Miss Daisy
- Pulitzer Prize for Fiction: Toni Morrison, Beloved
- Pulitzer Prize for Poetry: William Meredith: Partial Accounts: New and Selected Poems
- Whiting Awards: Fiction: Lydia Davis, Bruce Duffy, Jonathan Franzen, Mary La Chapelle, William T. Vollmann. Nonfiction: Gerald Early, Geoffrey O'Brien. Poetry: Michael Burkard, Li-Young Lee, Sylvia Moss
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to 1988 in literature.|
- Strike Announced By Writers For TV, New York Times, March 7, 1988
- Writers Ratify Contract, Ending Longest Strike, New York Times, August 8, 1988.
- Bill Keller (28 January 1988). "Notes on the Soviet Union". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 October 2013.
- Martin Seymour-Smith; Andrew C. Kimmens (1996). World Authors, 1900-1950. H.W. Wilson. p. 303. ISBN 978-0-8242-0899-8.
- Christian Smith; Joshua Prokopy (1999). Latin American Religion in Motion. Psychology Press. p. 249. ISBN 978-0-415-92106-0.
- Jenny Stringer; John Sutherland (1996). The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-century Literature in English. Oxford University Press. p. 146. ISBN 978-0-19-212271-1.
- Christine Olga Kiebuzinska (2001). Intertextual Loops in Modern Drama. Fairleigh Dickinson Univ Press. p. 320. ISBN 978-0-8386-3895-8.
- Edd Applegate (1996). Literary Journalism: A Biographical Dictionary of Writers and Editors. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 101. ISBN 978-0-313-29949-0.
- Jo Ray McCuen; Anthony C. Winkler (1991). Reading, Writing, and the Humanities. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. p. 107. ISBN 978-0-15-575512-3.
- Vogue interview, 16 October 2017 Retrieved 24 May 2018.
- Contact II. Contact II Publications. 1988. p. 64.
- Anne Commire; Deborah Klezmer (1999). Women in World History: Laa-Lyud. Yorkin Publications. p. 178. ISBN 978-0-7876-4068-2.
- The Annual Obituary. St. Martin's. 1988. p. 118. ISBN 978-1-55862-050-6.
- Irish University Review. Irish University Press. 1988. p. 190.
- South African Outlook. Outlook Publications. 1988. p. 88.
- Bennetts, Leslie (April 22, 1988). "I. A. L. Diamond Is Dead at 67; Won Oscar for 'The Apartment'". The New York Times.
- Biswajit Sinha; Ashok Kumar Choudhury (1996). Encyclopaedia of Indian Writers: Bengali. Eastern Book Linkers. p. 100. ISBN 978-81-86339-31-2.
- Harold Bloom (1995). Science Fiction Writers of the Golden Age. Chelsea House. p. 111. ISBN 978-0-7910-2199-6.
- "Obituaries: Shen Congwen; Chinese Author Provided Vivid Picture of Rural Life in Chaotic Era". Los Angeles Times. Times Wire Services. 14 May 1988. Retrieved 10 January 2014.
- Robert L. Gale (1992). Louis L'Amour. Twayne Publishers. p. 14. ISBN 978-0-8057-7649-2.
- Romania Yearbook. Editura Științifică și Enciclopedică. 1989. p. 132. ISBN 978-973-29-0098-7.
- Barbara A. Tenenbaum (1996). Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture: Gabeira to Mesta. C. Scribner's Sons. p. 418. ISBN 978-0-684-19754-8.
- Frank Manchel (1990). Film Study: An Analytical Bibliography. Fairleigh Dickinson Univ Press. p. 1264. ISBN 978-0-8386-3412-7.
- Carol Sklenicka (24 November 2009). Raymond Carver: A Writer's Life. Simon and Schuster. p. 478. ISBN 978-1-4391-6058-9.
- Pace, Eric (September 30, 1988). "Charles Addams Dead at 76; Found Humor in the Macabre". The New York Times. Retrieved October 11, 2009.
- The New York Times Biographical Service. University Microfilms. 1988. p. 1076.
- "Making Britain - Bhabani Bhattacharya". Open University. Retrieved September 2, 2021.
- The Annual Obituary. St. Martin's. 1988. p. 491. ISBN 978-1-55862-050-6.
- The Annual Obituary. St. Martin's. 1988. p. 579. ISBN 978-1-55862-050-6.
- Frank Bonham (1989). The Best Western Stories of Frank Bonham. Swallow Press/Ohio University Press. p. 269. ISBN 978-0-8040-0929-4.
- Southerly: The Magazine of the Australian English Association, Sydney. American English Association. 1990. p. 541.
- Head, Dominic (2006). The Cambridge guide to literature in English. Cambridge UK New York: Cambridge University Press. p. 98. ISBN 9780521831796.
- Bloom, Harold (1995). Modern crime and suspense writers. New York: Chelsea House. p. 174. ISBN 9780791022221.
- Peter C. Hoy (March 1991). French Twentieth Bibliography: Critical and Biographical References for the Study of French Literature Since 1885. Susquehanna University Press. p. 12029. ISBN 978-0-945636-12-0.
- "In Camera Austria". Creative Camera. Coo Press Limited: 34. 1989.
- Elizabeth A. Brennan; Elizabeth C. Clarage (1999). Who's who of Pulitzer Prize Winners. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 244–5. ISBN 978-1-57356-111-2.
- Díez, Ma. Asunción (2002). La narrativa de Juan Pedro Aparicio. Cuenca Spain: Ediciones de la Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha. p. 277. ISBN 9788484272250.