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Doris Lessing, Voice for Many Ages, Dies at 94

Posted on Nov 17, 2013
AP/Martin Cleaver

Doris Lessing at her home in north London in 2006.

Doris Lessing, an influential and prolific writer who made her mark in more than 50 novels, as well as short stories, essays and poems, died Sunday in London at age 94. 

Over the course of her rich career, Lessing drew upon her early years in Africa, registered sociopolitical changes, waxed lyrical about cats (paging T.S. Eliot) and, in her last novel, “Albert and Emily,” looked back to her parents’ early years living in the shadow of World War I.

“The Golden Notebook” and “The Grass Is Singing” figure among her most influential works, and her impact on the literary world was sealed with the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2007.

On Sunday, her publisher HarperCollins released an announcement about her death, and biographer Michael Holroyd described her legacy, as The Guardian reported:

He said: “Her themes have been universal and international. They ranged from the problems of post-colonial Africa to the politics of nuclear power, the emergence of a new woman’s voice and the spiritual dimensions of 20th-century civilisation. Few writers have as broad a range of subject and sympathy.

“She is one of those rare writers whose work crosses frontiers, and her impressively large output constitutes a chronicle of our time. She has enlarged the territory both of the novel and of our consciousness.”

Nick Pearson, her editor at HarperCollins/4th Estate, said : “I adored her.”

 

Click here to see the Twitter feed about Doris Lessing’s life, death and work.

—Posted by Kasia Anderson.

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