Schiff in 2016
|Born||Stacy Madeleine Schiff|
October 26, 1961
|Occupation||Writer and editor|
|Education||Phillips Academy (Andover)|
|Alma mater||Williams College|
|Genre||Biography, Essay, Nonfiction|
|Notable awards||Pulitzer Prize|
Stacy Madeleine Schiff (born October 26, 1961) is an American former editor, essayist, and author of five biographies; her biography of Vera Nabokov, the wife and muse of the Russian-American novelist Vladimir Nabokov, won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize in biography.
Schiff has also written biographies of French aviator and author of The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, colonial American-era polymath and prime mover of America's founding, Benjamin Franklin, ancient Egyptian queen Cleopatra, and the important figures and events of the Salem Witch Trials of 1692–93 in colonial Massachusetts.
Early life and career
Schiff was born in Adams, Massachusetts, to Morton Schiff, the president Schiff Clothing, a store founded by Schiff's great-grandfather in 1897, and Helen, a professor of French literature at North Adams State college (now called Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts). Schiff graduated from Phillips Academy (Andover) preparatory school, and subsequently earned her B.A. degree from Williams College in 1982. She was a senior editor at Simon & Schuster until 1990.
Schiff won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for Biography or Autobiography for Vera, a biography of Vera Nabokov, wife and muse of Vladimir Nabokov. She was also a finalist for the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for Biography or Autobiography for Saint-Exupéry: A Biography of Antoine de Saint Exupéry.
Her fourth book, Cleopatra: A Life, was published in 2010. As the Wall Street Journal's reviewer put it, "Schiff does a rare thing: She gives us a book we'd miss if it didn't exist." The New Yorker termed the book "a work of literature;" Simon Winchester predicted "it will become a classic." Cleopatra appeared on The New York Times's Top Ten Books of 2010, and won the 2011 PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for biography.
Schiff's The Witches: Salem, 1692 was published in 2015. The New York Times described it as "an almost novelistic, thriller-like narrative." David McCullough declared the book "brilliant from start to finish."
Her essays and articles have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, The New York Review of Books, The Times Literary Supplement, and The Washington Post. A former guest columnist at The New York Times, Schiff resides in New York City and is a trustee of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.
Awards and honors
- National Endowment for the Humanities, fellowship
- 1996 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, fellowship
- 2000 Pulitzer Prize, Vera (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov)
- 2006 George Washington Book Prize, "A Great Improvisation"
- 2015 Lapham's Quarterly Janus Prize
- 2017 New England Historic Genealogical Society Lifetime Achievement Award in History and Biography
- 2018 French Ministry of Culture, Chevalier des Arts et Lettres
- 2019 American Academy of Arts and Letters
- Schiff, Stacy (2005). A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America. New York: Henry Holt. ISBN 0-8050-6633-0. (Published in the UK as Dr Franklin Goes to France)
- Schiff, Stacy (2010). Cleopatra: A Life. Little, Brown and Company. ISBN 978-0-316-00192-2.
- Schiff, Stacy (2015). The Witches: Salem, 1692. Little, Brown and Company. ISBN 978-0-316-20061-5.
- "Barnes&Noble Meet the Writers: Stacy Schiff". Archived from the original on February 2, 2007.
- "Stacy M. Schiff, An Editor, Weds". New York Times. 1989-05-14.
- Thomspon, Bob (May 24, 2006). "Schiff Wins Washington Book Prize For Work On Franklin". The Washington Post.
- Ruden, Sarah (November 2010). "Book Review: Cleopatra – WSJ". The Wall Street Journal.
- Thurman, Judith. "The Cleopatriad". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2020-03-01.
- "Cleopatra - Stacy Schiff - Author Biography". www.litlovers.com. Retrieved 2020-03-01.
- "The 10 Best Books of 2010". The New York Times. 2010-12-01. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-03-18.
- "2011 PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award". PEN America. 2012-11-15. Retrieved 2020-03-18.
- Alter, Alexandra (2015-10-25). "Stacy Schiff's 'The Witches' Shines a Torch on Salem Trials". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-03-22.
- "Amazon Book Review". www.amazonbookreview.com. Retrieved 2020-03-18.
- Suellen Stringer-Hye (1999). "An interview with Stacy Schiff". The Pennsylvania State University. Cite journal requires
- "Book reviews by Stacy Schiff in the New York Review of Books". The New York Review of Books., The Boston Globe, and The Washington Post, among many other publications.
- "Stacy Schiff details biographer's triumphs, tribulations, obsessions". iBerkshires. 2001-06-13.
- "John Simon Guggenheim Foundation | Board of Trustees". Retrieved 2020-03-19.
- "ALOUD: Lectures, Readings, Performances, & Discussions". Los Angeles Central Library. Archived from the original on December 27, 2005.
- "John Simon Guggenheim Foundation | Stacy Schiff". Retrieved 2020-02-20.
- "Vera (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov), by Stacy Schiff (Random House)". The Pulitzer Prizes — Columbia University. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
- "George Washington Book Prize Past Winners". Retrieved May 31, 2019.
- "The Decades Ball - June 1, 2015". Lapham’s Quarterly. Retrieved April 7, 2019.
- "2017 Annual Dinner". www.americanancestors.org. Retrieved April 7, 2019.
- "Nomination dans l'ordre des Arts et des Lettres - été 2018". www.culture.gouv.fr/.
- Fedor, Ashley. "2019 Newly Elected Members". American Academy of Arts and Letters. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
- "1995 Finalists". The Pulitzer Prizes – Columbia University. Cite journal requires
- "2000 Winners". The Pulitzer Prizes – Columbia University. Cite journal requires