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Alan Hollinghurst

Alan James Hollinghurst FRSL (born 26 May 1954) is an English novelist, poet, short story writer and translator. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the 1989 Somerset Maugham Award, the 1994 James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the 2004 Booker Prize.


Hollinghurst was born in Stroud, Gloucestershire, the only child of James Hollinghurst, a bank manager who served in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War, and his wife, Elizabeth. He attended Canford School in Dorset.

Hollinghurst studied English at Magdalen College, Oxford, receiving a BA in 1975 and MLitt in 1979. His thesis was on the works of Ronald Firbank, E. M. Forster and L. P. Hartley, three gay writers. While at Oxford he shared a house with future poet laureate Andrew Motion, and was awarded the Newdigate Prize for poetry in 1974, a year before Motion.

In the late 1970s he became a lecturer at Magdalen College, and then at Somerville and at Corpus Christi. In 1981 he moved on to lecture at University College London, and in 1982 he joined The Times Literary Supplement, where he was the paper's deputy editor from 1985 to 1990.

Hollinghurst is gay and lives in London.

He won the 2004 Man Booker Prize for The Line of Beauty. His next novel, The Stranger's Child, was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2011.

He lives alone, explaining: "I'm not at all easy to live with. I wish I could integrate writing into ordinary social life, but I don't seem to be able to. I could when I started [writing]. I suppose I had more energy then. Now I have to isolate myself for long periods."

List of works


  • Isherwood is at Santa Monica (Sycamore Broadsheet 22: two poems, hand-printed on a single folded sheet), Oxford: Sycamore Press 1975
  • Poetry Introduction 4 (ten poems: 'Over the Wall', 'Nightfall', 'Survey', 'Christmas Day at Home', 'The Drowned Field', 'Alonso', 'Isherwood is at Santa Monica', 'Ben Dancing at Wayland's Smithy', 'Convalescence in Lower Largo', 'The Well'), Faber, 1978
  • Confidential Chats with Boys, Oxford: Sycamore Press 1982 (based on the book Confidential Chats with Boys by William Lee Howard, MD., 1911, Sydney, Australia)
  • 'Mud' (London Review of Books, Vol.4 No.19, 21 October 1982)


  • The Swimming Pool Library, 1988
  • The Folding Star, 1994
  • The Spell, 1998
  • The Line of Beauty, 2004
  • The Stranger's Child, 2011
  • The Sparsholt Affair, 2017

Short stories

  • A Thieving Boy (Firebird 2: Writing Today, Penguin, 1983)
  • Sharps and Flats (Granta 43, 1993) Was incorporated into The Folding Star
  • Highlights (Granta 100, 2007)


  • Bajazet by Jean Racine, 1991
  • Bérénice by Jean Racine, 2012

As editor

  • New Writing 4 (with A. S. Byatt), 1995
  • Three Novels by Ronald Firbank, 2000
  • A. E. Housman: poems selected by Alan Hollinghurst, 2001

Awards and honours

In 1974, Hollinghurst was awarded the Newdigate Prize.

In 1989, Hollinghurst won the Somerset Maugham Award for The Swimming Pool Library.

In 1994, he won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for The Folding Star.

In 2004, he won the Man Booker Prize for The Line of Beauty.

In 2011, his novel The Stranger's Child was longlisted for the Booker Prize.

He received the Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement from Publishing Triangle in 2011.


External links

  • An Interview at the Oxonian Review
  • Alan Hollinghurst at British Council: Literature includes a "Critical Perspective" section
  • Alan Hollinghurst at The New York Review of Books
  • Alan Hollinghust Profile in The Guardian
  • 2011 radio interview at The Bat Segundo Show
  • Peter Terzian (Winter 2011). "Alan Hollinghurst, The Art of Fiction No. 214". The Paris Review.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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