Ian McEwan

Ian McEwan

Infobox Writer
name = Ian McEwan

imagesize = 200px
caption =
pseudonym =
birthdate = Birth date and age|1948|6|21|mf=y
birthplace = Aldershot
deathdate =
deathplace =
occupation = Author, screenwriter
nationality = British
period = 1975 - present
genre = Recent history
subject =
spouse = Penny Allen (1982-1995)
Annalena McAfee (1997-)
influences = Virginia Woolf, Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, John Updike, Franz Kafka
influenced =
religion =

website = http://www.ianmcewan.com

Ian McEwan, CBE, FRSA, FRSL, (born June 21, 1948) is a Booker Prize-winning English novelist.


McEwan was born in Aldershot in England and spent much of his childhood in East Asia, Germany and North Africa, where his Scottish army officer father, David McEwan, was posted. He was educated at Woolverstone Hall School, the University of Sussex and the University of East Anglia, where he was the first graduate of Malcolm Bradbury's pioneering creative writing course.

He has been married twice. His second wife, Annalena McAfee, was formerly the editor of "The Guardian"'s Review section. In 1999, his first wife, Penny Allen, took their 13-year-old son after a court in Brittany, France, ruled that the boy should be returned to his father, who had been granted sole custody over him and his 15-year-old brother. [cite news | title = Novelist's ex-wife 'gagged' | publisher = BBC News | date = 1999-09-07 | url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/440893.stm | accessdate = 2006-06-03]

In March and April 2004, just months after the British government invited him to dinner with Laura Bush, McEwan was denied entry into the United States by the Department of Homeland Security for not having the proper visa. [cite news | last = Gillan | first = Audrey | title = Novelist McEwan barred from US | work = Guardian Unlimited | date = 2004-04-01 | url = http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,1183267,00.html | accessdate = 2006-06-03] After several days' publicity in the British press, McEwan was admitted because, as he quoted a customs official telling him, "We still don't want to let you in, but this is attracting a lot of unfavourable publicity." [cite news | last = Harden | first = Blaine | title = Acclaimed novelist denied entry to U.S. | work = San Francisco Chronicle | date = 2004-04-03 | url = http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2004/04/03/MNGRI6066K1.DTL | accessdate = 2006-06-03] The US government later sent a letter of apology. [cite news | title = US apologises for barring author | publisher = BBC News | date = 2004-04-22 | url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/3649683.stm | accessdate = 2006-06-03]

McEwan is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was awarded the Shakespeare Prize by the Alfred Toepfer Foundation, Hamburg, in 1999. Ian McEwan is also a Distinguished Supporter of the British Humanist Association. He was awarded a CBE in 2000.cite web | title = Ian McEwan | work = Contemporary Writers | publisher = British Council | url = http://www.contemporarywriters.com/authors/?p=auth70 | accessdate = 2006-06-03]

In 2002, Ian McEwan discovered that he had a brother who had been given up for adoption during World War II - the story became public in 2007. [cite news | last = Cowell | first = Alan | title = Ian McEwan's life takes twist with discovery of a brother | publisher = International Herald Tribune | date = 2007-01-17 | url = http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/01/17/news/brother.php | accessdate = 2007-03-23] The brother, a bricklayer named David Sharpe, was born six years earlier than McEwan, when his mother was married to a different man. Sharpe has the same two parents as McEwan but was born from an affair between McEwan's parents that occurred before their marriage. After her first husband was killed in combat, McEwan's mother married her lover, and Ian was born a few years later. [cite news | title = Novelist McEwan discovers brother | publisher = BBC News | date = 2007-01-11 | url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/6269887.stm | accessdate = 2007-03-22] The two are in regular contact, and McEwan has written a foreword to Sharpe's memoir.

In 2008, Ian McEwan was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Literature by University College, London, where he used to teach English literature.


His first published work was a collection of short stories, "First Love, Last Rites" (1975), which won the Somerset Maugham Award in 1976. "The Cement Garden" (1978) and "The Comfort of Strangers" (1981) were his two earliest novels. The nature of these works caused him to be nicknamed "Ian Macabre."cite news | last = Walsh | first = John | title = Ian McEwan: Here's the twist | work = Independent Online Edition | date = 2007-01-27 | url = http://news.independent.co.uk/people/profiles/article2169220.ece | accessdate = 2007-03-22] These were followed by three novels of some success in the 1980s and early 1990s.

His 1997 novel, "Enduring Love", about a person with de Clerambault's syndrome, is regarded by many as a masterpiece, though it was not shortlisted for the Booker Prize. [cite news | last = Knorr | first = Katherine | title = Enduring Love | publisher = International Herald Tribune | date = 1997-10-09 | url = http://www.iht.com/articles/1997/10/09/bookjeu.t.php | accessdate = 2007-03-22] [cite web | title=Ian McEwan's Family Values | work=Boston Review | url=http://bostonreview.net/BR31.1/boylan.html | accessdate=2007-03-21] In 1998, he was awarded the Booker Prize for his novel "Amsterdam". His next novel, "Atonement", received considerable high acclaim; "Time Magazine" named it the best novel of 2002, and it was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. His next work, "Saturday", follows an especially eventful day in the life of a successful neurosurgeon. Henry Perowne, the main character, lives in a house on a well-known square in central London, where McEwan now lives after having relocated from Oxford. "Saturday" won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for 2005. He wrote an article for chinadialogue about climate change in 2005. [http://www.chinadialogue.net/article/show/single/en/75-Let-s-talk-about-climate-change Let's talk about climate change | Ian McEwan - China Dialogue ] ] His most recent novel, "On Chesil Beach", was shortlisted for the 2007 Booker Prize. McEwan has also written a number of produced screenplays, a stage play, children's fiction, and an oratorio.

McEwan's most recent completed work is the libretto to an opera called "For You" composed by Michael Berkeley, which tells the story of a composer whose sexual and professional prowess have passed their peak. It is to be performed in November 2008 by Music Theatre Wales. [cite news | last = Brooks | first = Richard | title = Novelist McEwan turns hand to opera | work = The Sunday Times | date = 2007-08-26 | url = http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article2327935.ece | accessdate = 2007-08-26]


In late 2006, Lucilla Andrews' autobiography "No Time for Romance" became the focus of a posthumous controversy (she died in October 2006) when it was alleged that McEwan plagiarized from this work while writing his highly acclaimed novel "Atonement". [cite news | last = Langdon | first = Julia | title = Ian McEwan accused of stealing ideas from romance novelist | work = Daily Mail | publisher = Associated Newspapers Ltd. | date = 2006-11-25 | url = http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/femail/article.html?in_article_id=418598&in_page_id=1879 | accessdate = 2006-12-14] McEwan publicly protested his innocence; in "The Guardian" newspaper, he responded to the claim, stating he had acknowledged Andrews' work in the author's note at the end of "Atonement". [cite news | last = McEwan | first = Ian | title = An inspiration, yes. Did I copy from another author? No | work = Guardian Unlimited | date = 2006-11-27 | url = http://books.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,1957845,00.html | accessdate = 2007-03-22] [cite news | last = Hoyle | first = Ben | title = McEwan hits back at call for atonement | work = Times Online | publisher = Times Newspapers Ltd. | date = 2006-11-27 | url = http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/public/article650961.ece | accessdate = 2006-11-27] McEwan has been defended by many leading writers, including the American novelist Thomas Pynchon.Comments had also been made about the questionable originality of his first novel, "The Cement Garden", and the writer Claire Henderson-Davis suggested to McEwan that his book "On Chesil Beach" had been inspired by the name of her mother, and the life stories of her parents. [ [http://observer.guardian.co.uk/7days/story/0,,2195904,00.html Pendennis | 7 Days | The Observer ] ] McEwan has denied this claim.

In 2008, McEwan publicly spoke out against Islamism for its views on women and homosexuality. According to him, fundamentalist Islam wanted to create a society that he abhorred. His comments appeared in the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, to defend fellow writer Martin Amis against allegations of racism. According to McEwan, Christianity was equally absurd and that he didn't "like these medieval visions of the world according to which God is coming to save the faithful and to damn the others." [cite news | last = Popham | first = Peter | title = 'I despise Islamism': Ian McEwan faces backlask over press interview | work = The Independent | date = 2008-06-22 | url = http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/i-despise-islamism-ian-mcewan-faces-backlash-over-press-interview-852030.html | accessdate = 2008-06-25]

McEwan put forward the following statement on his official site and blog after claiming he was misinterpreted: :Certain remarks of mine to an Italian journalist have been widely misrepresented in the UK press, and on various websites. Contrary to reports, my remarks were not about Islam, but about Islamism - perhaps 'extremism' would be a better term. I grew up in a Muslim country - Libya - and have only warm memories of a dignified, tolerant and hospitable Islamic culture. I was referring in my interview to a tiny minority who preach violent jihad, who incite hatred and violence against 'infidels', apostates, Jews and homosexuals; who in their speeches and on their websites speak passionately against free thought, pluralism, democracy, unveiled women; who will tolerate no other interpretation of Islam but their own and have vilified Sufism and other strands of Islam as apostasy; who have murdered, among others, fellow Muslims by the thousands in the market places of Iraq, Algeria and in the Sudan. Countless Islamic writers, journalists and religious authorities have expressed their disgust at this extremist violence. To speak against such things is hardly 'astonishing' on my part (Independent on Sunday) or original, nor is it 'Islamophobic' and 'right wing' as one official of the Muslim Council of Britain insists, and nor is it to endorse the failures and brutalities of US foreign policy. It is merely to invoke a common humanity which I hope would be shared by all religions as well as all non-believers.' [ [http://ian-mcewan.blogspot.com/ ian-mcewan.blogspot.com] ]


Film adaptations
*"Last Day of Summer" (1984)
*"The Cement Garden" (1993)
*"The Comfort of Strangers" (1990)
*"The Innocent" (1993)
*" Solid Geometry" (2002)
*"Enduring Love" (2004)
*"Atonement" (2007)
*"Saturday" (2008 announced)

External links

* [http://www.kwls.org/lit/podcasts/2007/12/ian_mcewan_on_chesil_beach.cfm Podcast: Ian McEwan reading from On Chesil Beach, at the Key West Literary Seminar, 2007.]
* [http://dissentmagazine.org/article/?article=191 Dissent Magazine article]
* [http://abc.com.au/rn/bookshow/stories/2008/2221016.htm Ian McEwan at the Sydney Opera House]
* [http://books.guardian.co.uk/authors/author/0,5917,-108,00.html Ian McEwan in Guardian Books: Authors section]
* [http://www.ianmcewan.com Ian McEwan's Official Website]
* [http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/28/books/28aton.html?ex=1322370000&en=998492a2933f783c&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss New York Times article] on "Atonement" controversy
* [http://www.cbc.ca/thehour/video.php?id=1646 McEwan Interview] on The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos
* [http://www.powells.com/authors/mcewan.html Powells.com interview]
* [http://www.salonmagazine.com/books/int/1998/03/cov_si_31int.html Salon.com interview]
* [http://www.randomhouse.com.au/Authors/Default.aspx?Page=Author&ID=McEwan,%20Ian Ian McEwan at Random House Australia]

Further reading

*Byrnes, Christina (1995), "Sex and Sexuality in Ian McEwan's Work", Nottingham, England: Pauper's Press. ISBN 094665056X
*Byrnes, Christina (2002), "The Work of Ian McEwan: A Psychodynamic Approach", Nottingham, England: Paupers' Press. ISBN 0946650756
*Byrnes, Bernie C. (2006), "Ian McEwan's 'Atonement' and 'Saturday"', Nottingham, England: Paupers' Press. ISBN 094665090X
*Childs, Peter (2005), "The Fiction of Ian McEwan" (Readers' Guides to Essential Criticism), Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 1403919097
*D'Eliva, Gaetano, and Christopher Williams, (1986), "La Nuova Letteratura Inglese Ian McEwan", Schena Editore.
*Jensen, Morten H. (2005), [http://www.ianmcewan.com/bib/articles/Jensen.pdf "The Effects of Conflict in the Novels of Ian McEwan"] - (Adobe Acrobat *.PDF document)
*Malcolm, David (2002), "Understanding Ian McEwan", University of South Carolina. ISBN 1570034362
*Pedot, Richard (1999), "Perversions Textuelles dans la Fiction d'Ian McEwan", Editions l'Harmattan.
*Reynolds, Margaret, and Jonathan Noakes, (2002), "Ian McEwan: The Essential Guide", Vintage. ISBN 0099437554
*Ryan, Kiernan (1994), "Ian McEwan" (Writers and Their Work), Northcote House. ISBN 074630742X
*Rooney, Anne (2006), "Atonement", York Notes. ISBN 1405835613
*Slay Jr., Jack (1996), "Ian McEwan" (Twayne's English Authors Series), Twayne Publishers. ISBN 0805745785
*Williams, Christopher (1993), PDFlink|" [http://www.ianmcewan.com/bib/articles/williams.pdf Ian McEwan's The Cement Garden and the Tradition of the Child/Adolescent as 'I-Narrator] "|209 KiB , Biblioteca della Ricerca, Schena Editore. - (Adobe Acrobat *.PDF document)


NAME=McEwan, Ian
DATE OF BIRTH=June 21, 1948
PLACE OF BIRTH=Aldershot, England

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