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see biographybiography,
reconstruction in print or on film, of the lives of real men and women. Together with autobiography—an individual's interpretation of his own life—it shares a venerable tradition, meeting the demands of different audiences through the ages.
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a description of one’s own life; a literary genre similar to memoirs but differing from them in a greater emphasis on the author’s person and psychology.

Examples of autobiographies are Saint Augustine’s Confessions (397–398), P. Abélard’s Historia Calamitatum (1132–36), and B. Cellini’s The Life of Benvenuto (1558–66). The first Russian autobiography was The Life of the Archpriest Avvakum (1672–75). In modern literature J.-J. Rousseau and A. I. Herzen have created literary autobiographical confessions. Some works of L. N. Tolstoy, M. Gorky, K. G. Paustovskii, M. Proust, and other writers are autobiographical in character. The autobiographies of the revolutionary figures G. Garibaldi, P. A. Kropotkin, and A. Bebel have been translated into many languages.

The word “autobiography” may also refer to a brief chronological summary of the chief events of one’s life.


an account of a person's life written or otherwise recorded by that person
References in periodicals archive ?
In the tradition of Edward Gibbon, who in Memoirs of My Life (1796) produced the first extended, secular autobiography to be printed and widely disseminated within a few years of his death (Shumaker 27), the Victorian literary autobiographer stresses the development of innate traits into mature ideas, but the author's life in effect merges with a chronology of his published works as soon as he has reached the stage of development identified with a public role as he wishes to define it.
The autobiographer thus works under the pretense of a singular "I," but the first person always conceals a secret third person:
Each entry in this sourcebook begins with a biography of the autobiographer, followed by a brief discussion of the themes of the autobiography and a short description of its critical reception.
For both autobiographers, memory starts with childhood illness.
54) Autobiographers also frequently mention whether the parents enlarged the farmable land, went fishing in questionable weather, how they related to the servants and how well they managed the workers.
While Augustine was guided formally and spiritually by a desire to see both his book and the conversion it describes replicated by his readers, no autobiographer wishes to be copied.
And while recent theory of autobiography has raised serious questions about such simple non-fictional autobiographical aims, many early autobiographers, at least ostensibly, felt their autobiographies to be non-fictional works.
The paradigm for these autobiographers is drawn from a mixture of the lives of Job, Paul, and Augustine (who is here elevated to the level of holy writ).
he takes the evidence provided by black autobiographers as a kind of inert material demanding the fancy conceptual terminology of a white (but would-be-black) intellectual to achieve its full being as both theory and practice.
Although Carl Dawson's Prophets of Past Time, Seven British Autobiographers, 1880-1914 (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1988) does not directly address prose of the nineteenth century, it concerns itself with recollections of the era.
hooks's impulse to justify writing her memoir on the grounds that it will be useful to others is typical of women autobiographers.
The book argues that nineteenth-century autobiographers necessarily selected incidents relating to a perceived conversion, ordered them, and thus produced autobiographies in some sense fictional.