Tripti Joshi (Editor)

Claire Messud

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Occupation  Novelist, teacher
Spouse  James Wood (m. 1992)
Role  Novelist
Name  Claire Messud
Nationality  American

Claire Messud Claire Messud to Publishers Weekly What kind of question
Education  University of Cambridge (1989), Yale University (1987), Milton Academy
Awards  Guggenheim Fellowship for Creative Arts, US & Canada, New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year
Nominations  PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, Goodreads Choice Awards Best Fiction
Books  The Woman Upstairs, The Emperor's Children, The Last Life: A Novel, When the World Was Steady, The Hunters
Similar People  James Wood, Meg Wolitzer, Rachel Kushner, Thomas Bernhard, Lorrie Moore

Claire messud 2014 national book festival

Claire Messud (born 1966) is an American novelist and literature and creative writing professor. She is best known as the author of the novel The Emperor's Children (2006).


Claire Messud The Woman Upstairs39 by Claire Messud The New York Times

Claire messud the woman upstairs part one

Early life

Claire Messud Claire Messud 39I still believe at the end somebody will

Born in Greenwich, Connecticut, Messud grew up in the United States, Australia, and Canada, returning to the United States as a teenager. Messud's mother is Canadian, and her father is ethnic French from French Algeria (Algeria was a French colony until 1962). She was educated at the University of Toronto Schools, and Milton Academy. She did undergraduate and graduate studies at Yale University and Cambridge University, where she met her spouse James Wood. Messud also briefly attended the MFA program at Syracuse University.


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Messud's debut novel, When The World Was Steady (1995), was nominated for the PEN/Faulkner Award. In 1999, she published her second book, The Last Life, about three generations of a French-Algerian family. Her 2001 work, The Hunters, consists of two novellas. The Emperor’s Children, which Messud wrote while a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study in 2004–2005, was critically praised and became a New York Times bestseller, as well as being longlisted for the 2006 Man Booker Prize. In April 2013, Messud published her sixth novel, The Woman Upstairs.

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Messud has taught creative writing at Amherst College, Kenyon College, University of Maryland, Yale University, in the Warren Wilson College MFA Program for Writers in North Carolina, in the Graduate Writing program at The Johns Hopkins University, and at Harvard University. Messud also taught at the Sewanee: The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. She is on the editorial board of the literary magazine The Common, based at Amherst College. She has contributed articles to publications such as The New York Review of Books.

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Each spring semester, beginning 2009, Messud teaches a literary traditions course as a part of CUNY Hunter College's MFA Program in Creative Writing.


The American Academy of Arts and Letters has recognized Messud's talent with both an Addison Metcalf Award and a Strauss Living Award. She was considered for the 2003 Granta Best of Young British Novelists list, although none of the three passports she holds is British. As of 2010–2011, she is a fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin / Institute of Advanced Study. She has two children, Livia and Lucian.


Claire Messud Wikipedia