V. S. Naipaul

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Naipaul, V. S.

(Sir Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul) (nīpôl`), 1932–2018, English writer, b. Chaguanas, Trinidad; grad. University College, Oxford, 1953. Naipul, whose family descended from Indian Brahmins, lived in England from 1950 on. A master of English prose style and the author of 29 books in many literary genres, he is known for his penetrating analyses of alienation and exile. In fiction and essays marked by stylistic virtuosity and psychological insight, he often focused on his childhood and his travels beyond Trinidad–to South and North America, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Writing with increasing irony and pessimism, he often bleakly detailed the dual problems of the Third World: the oppression of colonialism and the chaos of postcolonialism.

Among Naipaul's works of international analysis are The Middle Passage (1962), about the West Indies and South America; an Indian trilogy: An Area of Darkness (1964), India: A Wounded Civilization (1977), and India: A Million Mutinies Now (1990); and The Masque of Africa (2010), on indigenous religions in several African nations. Naipaul's novels include The Mystic Masseur (1957), A House for Mr. Biswas (1961), which brought him international acclaim, In a Free State (1971; Booker Prize), Guerrillas (1975), The Mimic Men (1967), A Bend in the River (1979), and the autobiographical Half a Life (2001) and its sequel, Magic Seeds (2004). He also wrote numerous short stories and such other works as The Enigma of Arrival (1987), A Way in the World (1994), and A Writer's People (2008), autobiographical books combining novel, memoir, and history; Among the Believers (1981) and its sequel, Beyond Belief (1998), analyses of modern Islam and Islamic fundamentalism; and many political essays, a representative sample of which are collected in The Writer and the World (2002). Naipaul was knighted in 1990 and awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2001.


See F. Jussawalla, ed., Conversations with V. S. Naipaul (1997); his early letters in Between Father and Son: Family Letters (2000, ed. by G. Aitken); memoir by his daughter S. Naipaul Akal, The Naipauls of Nepaul Street (2018); biographies by R. D. Hamner (1973), R. Kelly (1989), and P. French (2008); studies by P. Theroux (1972 and 1998), R. D. Hamner, ed. (1979), P. Nightingale (1987), P. Hughes (1988), T. F. Weiss (1992), W. Dissanayake (1993), B. A. King (1993), J. Levy (1995), F. Mustafa (1995), R. Nixon (1997), N. Ramadevi (1997), A. J. Khan (1998), L. Feder (2001), H. Hayward (2002), and B. King (2003).

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References in periodicals archive ?
"Without a Place: V. S. Naipaul in Conversation with Ian Hamilton." Ian Hamilton.
V. S. Naipaul was an author of great courage and vision, and his greatest accomplishment was a profound understanding of the necessity of faith and tradition in the face of a pervasive cultural decline.
(1.) Because A Bend in the River is based upon Naipaul's writings "A New King for the Congo: Mobutu and the Nihilism of Africa" and A Congo Diary 1980, scholars identify central Africa as Zaire, not least because Naipaul wrote that "The Congo which used to be a Belgian colony is now an African kingdom and is called Zaire." See Naipaul, "A New King for the Congo: Mobutu and the Nihilism of Africa" in V. S. Naipaul The Writer and the World Essays (London: Pan Macmillan Ltd, 2002).
It is within this textual universe that I want to pay attention to one more intertext, V. S. Naipaul's A Bend in the River (1979).
Anger and the Alchemy of Literary Method in V. S. Naipaul's Political Fiction: The Case of The Mimic Men." Twentieth Century Literature Vol.
LONDON -- Novelist V. S. Naipaul has damned the achievements of his literary contemporaries by declaring that there are Acents[euro]A"no more great writers".
(1) See Rob Nixon, 'London Calling': V. S. Naipaul, Postcolonial Mandarin (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992); The Humour and the Pity, ed.
It is discouraging to note how much of Terry Eagleton's judgment is decided by V. S. Naipaul's ethnicity ["A Mind So Fine," Reviews, September].
FROM HIS "NEAR HYSTERIA" IN INDIA to his disdain for Black Power movements in the Caribbean, V. S. Naipaul's disappointment in the postcolonial world dominates The Writer and The World.
Reading V. S. Naipaul's The Writer and the World (Naipaul happens to be an Oxfordian, like Cleese & Co.), a hefty collection of twenty essays that spans vast stretches of the planet over a period of thirty years (1962-92) and focuses on various public figures in postcolonial India, Africa, the "African Diaspora," Argentina, and the Caribbean, one often feels Monty-Pythonesque bursts of impatience: "Good Lord, what a bloody mess these people have made of things!
Last December, on the day after being presented with the Nobel Prize for literature, V. S. Naipaul sat down in Stockholm for a televised conversation with three fellow literary laureates, Guner Grass, Nadine Gordimer, and Seamus Heaney and with Per Wastberg, a member of the Swedish Academy.