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Famous Like Me > Writer > O > Michael Ondaatje

Profile of Michael Ondaatje on Famous Like Me

Name: Michael Ondaatje  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 12th September 1943
Place of Birth: Colombo, Ceylon. [now Sri Lanka]
Profession: Writer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

Michael Ondaatje OC (born September 12, 1943) is a Canadian/Sri Lankan novelist and poet perhaps best known for his Booker Prize winning novel adapted into an Academy Award winning film, The English Patient.

Born in Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon) of Dutch-Tamil-Sinhalese origin, in 1954 he moved to England with his mother.

After relocating to Canada in 1962, Ondaatje became a Canadian citizen. Ondaatje received his BA from the University of Toronto and his MA from Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. In the mid-1960s he settled in Toronto. From 1971 to 1983 he taught at York University and since then at Glendon College in Toronto.

His style of fiction introduced in In the Skin of a Lion and mastered in The English Patient is non-linear. He creates a narrative by exploring many interconnected snapshots in great detail.

Although he is best known as a novelist, Ondaatje's work also encompasses memoir, poetry, and film. His memoir of his Sri Lankan childhood is called Running in the Family. He won the Governor General's Award for two books of poetry: The Collected Works of Billy the Kid (1970) and There's a Trick With a Knife I'm Learning to Do: Poems 1973-1978 (1979). His three films include a documentary on fellow poet bp nichol, The Sons of Captain Poetry.

He is also known for four works of fiction:

  • The English Patient—winner of the Booker Prize, the Canada Australia Prize, and the Canadian Governor General's Award and later made into a motion picture, winning the Academy Award for Best Picture. The English Patient can be considered a sequel to In the Skin of a Lion.
  • In the Skin of a Lion—one of the selected books in the 2002 edition of Canada Reads, championed by Steven Page. A fictional story about early immigrant settlers in Toronto, In the Skin of a Lion eventually won the competition.
  • Coming Through Slaughter—a fictional story of New Orleans, Louisiana about 1900, very loosely based on the lives of jazz pioneer Buddy Bolden and photographer E. J. Bellocq. Winner of the 1976 Books in Canada First Novel Award
  • Anil's Ghost—winner of the 2000 Giller Prize, the Prix Médicis, and Canada's Governor General's Award.

In 1988 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada.

His older brother, Christopher Ondaatje, who lives in the United Kingdom, is a multi-millionaire financier, philanthropist and author of travel books.

Further reading

  • Barbour, Douglas. Michael Ondaatje. ISBN 0805782907

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Michael Ondaatje