Atwood Biography

Margaret Eleanor Atwood was born on November 18, 1939 in Ottawa, Canada, to Carl Edmund Atwood and Margaret Dorothy Killiam. She attended and graduated from Victoria College at the University of Toronto, and graduated in 1961 with a Bachelor in Arts degree in English, with minors in French and philosophy. In that same year Atwood also received recognition in the form of the E.J. Pratt Medal for her collection of poems titled Double Persephone. She then continued graduate studies at Radcliffe College, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, receiving her Masters degree in 1962. She has been married twice, and has a daughter and two stepsons with her second husband. In her lifetime Atwood has served as President for both the Writers Union of Canada, and the International P.E.N., Canadian Center (English Speaking). Atwood has also instructed future writers at Sir George Williams University in Montreal and York University in Toronto. She has also served as a Writer-in-Residence at the University of Toronto, Macquarie University in Australia, and Trinity University in Texas. Atwood has published more than 2 dozen works including novels, short stories, poetry, children’s literature, and non-fiction works. She has received numerous awards for these works, including The Booker Prize for The Blind Assassin, and The Governor General’s Award for The Handmaid’s Tale.

Novels written and awards received for them:

• The Edible Woman (1969)
• Surfacing (1972)
• Lady Oracle (1976)
• Life Before Man (1979) - finalist for the 1979 Governor General's Award
• Bodily Harm (1981)
• The Handmaid's Tale (1985) - winner of the 1987 Arthur C. Clarke Award and the 1985 Governor General's Award.
• Cat's Eye (1988) - finalist for the 1988 Governor General's Award
• The Robber Bride (1993) - finalist for the 1994 Governor General's Award
• Alias Grace (1996) - winner of the 1996 Giller Prize and finalist for the 1996 Governor General's Award
• The Blind Assassin (2000) - winner of the 2000 Booker Prize and finalist for the 2000 Governor General's Award
• Oryx and Crake (2003) - finalist for the 2003 Governor General's Award
• The Penelopiad (2005) - longlisted for the 2007 IMPAC Award

List obtained from on "Margaret Atwood."

Copyright 2006 Dr. Michael O'Conner
All rights reserved.