John Updike

(1932-2009)


John Updike was born in Shillington, a small town
in Pennsylvania. In his childhood he lived in an
isolated farm, from ...


He graduated from Shillington High School as
co-valedictorian and class president in 1950 and
subsequently attended Har...


Updike stayed at The New Yorker as a full staff writer
for only two years, writing "Talk of the Town" columns
and submi...


Later, Updike and his family relocated to Ipswich,
Massachusetts.
Ipswich, Updike wrote Rabbit, Run (1960), on a
Guggen...


Updike married Mary E. Pennington, an art student
at Radcliffe College, in 1953. She accompanied him
to Oxford, England...
 In

1977 Updike married Martha
Ruggles Bernhard, with whom he
lived in Beverly Farms, Massachusetts
until his death of l...
Updike published eight volumes of poetry over his
career, including his first book The Carpentered
Hen (1958), and one of ...


British poet Gavin Ewart praised Updike for
the metaphysical quality of his poetry and
for his ability "to make the ord...


Updike was also a
critic of literature and
art, one frequently
cited as one of the
best American critics
of his generat...









1. Try to understand what the author wished to do,
and do not blame him for not achieving what he
did not at...




Much of Updike's art criticism appeared in The New
York Review of Books, where he often wrote about
American art. Hi...
Awards
1959 Guggenheim Fellow
 1959 National Institute of Arts and Letters
Rosenthal Award
 1964 National Book Award for Fictio...
 1987

St. Louis Literary Award
 1987 Ambassador Book Award
 1987 Helmerich Award, the Peggy V. Helmerich
Distinguished...
 1995

Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des
Lettres
 1997 Ambassador Book Award
 1998 National Book Award Medal of
Dis...
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John updike
John updike
John updike
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John updike

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John updike

  1. 1. John Updike (1932-2009)
  2. 2.  John Updike was born in Shillington, a small town in Pennsylvania. In his childhood he lived in an isolated farm, from where he dreamed to escape. His father was a high school science teacher. An only child, Updike and his parents shared a house with his grandparents for much of his childhood. When he was 13, the family moved to his mother's birthplace, a stone farmhouse on an 80-acre farm near Plowville, eleven miles from Shillington, where he continued to attend school.
  3. 3.  He graduated from Shillington High School as co-valedictorian and class president in 1950 and subsequently attended Harvard after receiving a full scholarship. After graduation, he decided to become a graphic artist and attended The Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art at the University of Oxford. His early ambition was to be a cartoonist. After returning to the United States, Updike and his family moved to New York, where he became a regular contributor to The New Yorker. This was the beginning of his writing career.
  4. 4.  Updike stayed at The New Yorker as a full staff writer for only two years, writing "Talk of the Town" columns and submitting poetry and short stories to the magazine. In New York, Updike wrote the poems and stories that came to fill his early books like The Carpentered Hen (1958) and The Same Door (1959). These works were influenced by Updike's early engagement with The New Yorker. During this time, Updike also underwent a profound spiritual crisis. Suffering from a loss of religious faith, he began reading Søren Kierkegaard and the theologian Karl Barth. Both deeply influenced his own religious beliefs, which in turn figured prominently in his fiction. Updike remained a believing Christian for the rest of his life.
  5. 5.  Later, Updike and his family relocated to Ipswich, Massachusetts. Ipswich, Updike wrote Rabbit, Run (1960), on a Guggenheim Fellowship, and The Centaur (1963), two of his most acclaimed and famous works; the latter won the National Book Award. Updike wrote three additional novels about him. Rabbit, Run was featured in Time's All-TIME 100 Greatest Novels. Updike's career and reputation were nurtured and expanded by his long association with The New Yorker, which published him frequently throughout his lifetime of writing, despite the fact that he had departed the magazine's employment after only two years.
  6. 6.  Updike married Mary E. Pennington, an art student at Radcliffe College, in 1953. She accompanied him to Oxford, England, where he attended art school and where their first child, Elizabeth, was born in 1955. The couple had three more children together: writer David (born 1957), Michael (born 1959) and Miranda (born 1960); Updike and Pennington divorced in 1974. Updike had seven grandchildren: Trevor Leonard Updike and Sawyer Michael Updike, Michael's sons; John Anoff Cobblah and Michael Kwame Cobblah, Elizabeth's sons; Kai Daniels Freyleue, Seneca Dunn Freyleue, and Peter Mickinley Chandler, Miranda's sons; and Wesley Updike, David's son.
  7. 7.  In 1977 Updike married Martha Ruggles Bernhard, with whom he lived in Beverly Farms, Massachusetts until his death of lung cancer at a hospice in Danvers, Massachusetts, on January 27, 2009, at the age of 76.
  8. 8. Updike published eight volumes of poetry over his career, including his first book The Carpentered Hen (1958), and one of his last, the posthumous Endpoint (2009). The New Yorker published excerpts of Endpoint in its March 16, 2009 issue. Updike's light verse instead as a poetry of "epigrammatically lucidity His poetry has been praised for its engagement with "a variety of forms and topics," its "wit and precision," and for its depiction of topics familiar to American readers. 
  9. 9.  British poet Gavin Ewart praised Updike for the metaphysical quality of his poetry and for his ability "to make the ordinary seem strange," and calls Updike one of the few modern novelists capable of writing good poetry. Reading Endpoint aloud, the critic Charles McGrath claimed that he found "another, deeper music" in Updike's poetry.
  10. 10.  Updike was also a critic of literature and art, one frequently cited as one of the best American critics of his generation . In the introduction to Picked-Up Pieces, his 1975 collection of prose, he listed his personal rules for literary criticism:
  11. 11.      1. Try to understand what the author wished to do, and do not blame him for not achieving what he did not attempt. 2. Give enough direct quotation — at least one extended passage — of the book's prose so the review's reader can form his own impression, can get his own taste. 3. Confirm your description of the book with quotation from the book, if only phrase-long, rather than proceeding by fuzzy précis. 4. Go easy on plot summary, and do not give away the ending. 5. If the book is judged deficient, cite a successful example along the same lines, from the author's œ uvre or elsewhere. Try to understand the failure. Sure it's his and not yours?
  12. 12.   Much of Updike's art criticism appeared in The New York Review of Books, where he often wrote about American art. His art criticism involved an aestheticism like that of his literary criticism. Updike's 2008 Jefferson Lecture, "The Clarity of Things: What's American About American Art?", dealt with the uniqueness of American art from the 18th century to the 20th.In the lecture he argued that American art, until the expressionist movement of the 20th century in which America declared its artistic "independence", is characterized by an insecurity not found in the artistic tradition of Europe.
  13. 13. Awards
  14. 14. 1959 Guggenheim Fellow  1959 National Institute of Arts and Letters Rosenthal Award  1964 National Book Award for Fiction  1965 Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger  1966 O. Henry Prize  1981 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction  1982 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction  1982 National Book Award for Fiction  1982 Union League Club Abraham Lincoln Award  1983 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism  1984 National Arts Club Medal of Honor 
  15. 15.  1987 St. Louis Literary Award  1987 Ambassador Book Award  1987 Helmerich Award, the Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award is presented annually by the Tulsa Library Trust.  1988 PEN/Malamud Award  1989 National Medal of Arts  1990 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction  1991 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction  1991 O. Henry Prize  1992 Honorary Doctor of Lettersfrom Harvard University  1995 William Dean Howells Medal of the American Academy of Arts and Letters  1995 Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres  1997 Ambassador Book Award
  16. 16.  1995 Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres  1997 Ambassador Book Award  1998 National Book Award Medal of Distinguished Contribution to American Letters  2003 National Humanities Medal  2004 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction  2006 Rea Award for the Short Story  2007 American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal for Fiction  2008 Literary Review Bad Sex in Fiction Lifetime Achievement Award  2008 Jefferson Lecture
  17. 17. Thank you for attention
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