Stephen Alter

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Stephen Alter (born 1956) is an American author, primarily of non-fiction but also of fiction, who was born and raised in India, where he grew up as the son of missionaries.[1] His childhood was spent primarily in the small British Raj-era hill station of Landour in the Lower Western Himalaya.

He graduated from Woodstock School (where his father Rev. Bob Alter long served as Principal) in Landour and subsequently from Wesleyan University.

He has taught writing at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and at the American University in Cairo. He has been awarded Fulbright Program and Guggenheim Fellowship grants.

He is married to Ameeta and has a son, Jayant and daughter Shibani. His first cousin Tom Alter is a noted Indian theatre, television and film actor as well as a cricket writer.

Selected titles[edit]

  • All the Way to Heaven: An American Boyhood in the Himalayas
  • Sacred Waters: A Pilgrimage Up the Ganges River to the Source of Hindu Culture
  • Elephas Maximus: A Portrait of the Indian Elephant
  • Amritsar to Lahore: A Journey Across the India-Pakistan Border
  • Fantasies of a Bollywood Love Thief
  • Renuka
  • Neglected Lives
  • Silk and Steel
  • The Godchild
  • Aripan & Other Stories (2005)


  1. ^ Beck, Carol Titus (6 July 1980). "Tragedy Changes his life". Pittsburgh Press. Retrieved 7 May 2010.