Tony D'Souza

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Tony D'Souza with his daughter, Gwen.

Tony D'Souza is an American novelist, journalist, essayist, reviewer, travel and short story writer. He has published three novels with and director Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and in foreign translations: Whiteman (2006), The Konkans (2008), and Mule (2011).

Life and career[edit]

D'Souza was born and grew up in Chicago.[1] He is multiracial with a Mangalorean Catholic father and a Euro-American mother; his mother served in the Peace Corps in India from 1966-1968.[2] Tony studied fiction with the short story writer Janet Desaulniers while an undergraduate at Carthage College, later earned master's degrees in writing from the University of Notre Dame and Hollins University. At Hollins, his friend and mentor was the Canadian poet Eric Trethewey, father of United States Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey.[3] D'Souza received a 2006 NEA Fellowship, a 2007 NEA Japan Friendship Fellowship, a 2008 Guggenheim Fellowship, and a 2011 John Ringling Towers Fund Grant.[4] He also served 2.5 years in the Peace Corps in Côte d'Ivoire where he was a rural AIDS educator.[5] After that program was evacuated in September 2002 due to the outbreak of the Ivorian Civil War, he transferred to the Peace Corps program in Madagascar, where he served an additional six months before leaving the Peace Corps.[6] Three years after leaving Peace Corps/Côte d'Ivoire, his short story, "Club des Amis" was published in The New Yorker.[7] This short story would become a part, a year later, of his first novel Whiteman.[8] D'Souza is a member of PEN, the National Book Critics Circle, the Great Books Foundation, and the National Peace Corps Association.[9] He has two children, Gwendolyn Alice and Rohan Anthony.[10] In 2009, he was honored by the Returned Peace Corps Volunteers of South Florida for his work.[11] In 2011, his work was included in a special Peace Corps collection at the Library of Congress, and he received a commendation from Congressman John Garamendi.[12] In 2014, he was named a Carthage College Distinguished Alumnus.[13]

Whiteman garnered many awards, including the Sue Kaufman Prize from The American Academy of Arts and Letters, was a New York Times Editor's Pick, a People Magazine Critic's Choice, a finalist for the New York Public Library's Young Lions Prize, PEN's Robert Bingham Award, and the LA Times Art Seidenbaum Award, and was named one of the 'Greatest Fiction Travel Books of All Time' by Condé Nast Traveler.[14] The Konkans was called a 'Best Novel of the Year' by The Washington Post, Poets & Writers, Publishers Weekly and The Christian Science Monitor.[15] Mule was praised by Vanity Fair, Gawker, the San Francisco Chronicle, Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, and Booklist, was a finalist for the St. Francis College Literary Prize for mid-career authors and was optioned for film by Warner Bros. for director Todd Phillips (Old School, The Hangover) with a script written by Mark Duplass and Jay Duplass (mumblecore).[16] His work has appeared in The New Yorker, Playboy, Esquire, Outside, Mother Jones, Salon, Granta, Tin House, and McSweeney's.[17] He received an O. Henry Award, had a story anthologized in Best American Fantasy, and received a Distinguished Story mention in the Stephen King edited Best American Short Stories. His early fiction and poetry appeared in a wide range of literary journals, including Nimrod, The Literary Review, The Fiddlehead (Canada), Imago (Australia), and Takahe (New Zealand), winning prizes from Black Warrior Review and Stand (UK).[18] He detailed his coverage of Nicaragua's Eric Volz murder trial on The Today Show, Dateline, Bill Kurtis Investigates, E! Channel, the BBC, and NPR, has been interviewed about his novels by The Leonard Lopate Show, Michael Silverblatt's Bookworm, Marketplace with Kai Ryssdal, Sandi Toksvig's Excess Baggage, and West Coast Live!, and appeared on All Things Considered.[19] Tony holds Florida Gold and Silver Medals in Fiction and has awards and recognitions for his journalism from the California Newspaper Publishers Association, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Black Journalists, the Florida Magazine Association, and the City and Regional Magazine Association.[20]



  • Whiteman (2006)
  • The Konkans (2008)
  • Mule (2011)


External links[edit]


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