People / Margaret Atwood

Writer, critic, activist, educator, editor. Margaret Atwood was born in Ottawa on November 18, 1939. She received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto (1961), a Master of Arts from Radcliffe College (1961), and began a Doctorate of Philosophy at Harvard University (1962-1963, 1965-1967). Atwood has held teaching positions at the University of British Columbia (1964-1965), Sir George Williams University (now Concordia University) (1967-1968), the University of Alberta (1969-70), and York University (1971-1972). She was Writer-In-Residence at University of Toronto (1972-1973), Master of Fine Arts Honorary Chair at the University of Alabama (1985), the Berg Chair at New York University (1986), Writer-In- Residence at Macquarie University (1987), and Writer-In-Residence at Trinity University (San Antonio, Texas) (1989).

She is the recipient of many awards, including the Governor General’s Award (1966, 1985), the Prince of Asturias Award for Letters (2008), Companion of the Order of Canada (1988), the Booker Prize (2000), Los Angeles Times Fiction Award (1986), the Government of France’s Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (1994), Arthur C. Clarke Award for best Science Fiction (1987), and a Guggenheim Fellowship (1981). In addition, Atwood has received honorary degrees from many universities, including the University of Toronto (1983), Smith College (1982), the University of Leeds (1994), and the Université de Montréal (1991). One of Canada’s most important contemporary authors, Atwood has published over fifty volumes of poetry, short stories, fiction, non-fiction, and children’s fiction, and has edited five anthologies of literature. Atwood’s writing is marked by a foregrounding of feminist concerns, its frequently complex yet compelling narrative structures, and its precise language. Atwood lives and works in Toronto.