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Ruth Prawer Jhabvala entry: Overview screen.
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Overview
Writing
Life
Writing and Life
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Ruth Prawer Jhabvala has been successful in two careers: as a novelist (a dozen titles) and short-story writer (eight collections), and as an author of film scripts (twenty-three), many of them adaptations from published fiction. Bibliographic Citation link. The two careers are, however, related. Her written fiction has moved from satirical social comedy about Indian middle-class society, to the impact of the myth of India on susceptible Westerners, to the social and personal whirlpools created when cultures meet, to the flourishing in rootless cultures of predatory, power-seeking individuals and movements. Her film scripts have followed a similar trajectory, while situating her chosen themes in a greater variety of settings and stories than her literary works.
Milestones
7 May 1927 Ruth Prawer (later RPJ) was born in Cologne, Germany. Bibliographic Citation link.
October 1975 RPJ published one of her most successful novels, Heat and Dust, another tale of the encounters of Englishwomen with India. Bibliographic Citation link.
February 1983 The film of RPJ's Heat and Dust, with her own screenplay, was released to mark the twenty-first anniversary of Merchant-Ivory Productions. Bibliographic Citation link.
25 March 2013 The New Yorker carried a new short story by RPJ, only ten days before she died. Bibliographic Citation link.
3 April 2013 As a result of pulmonary complications, at the age of eighty-five RPJ died at her Manhattan home. Bibliographic Citation link.
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