Michael Ondaatje





Michael Ondaatje

Author profile


born
in Colombo, Sri Lanka
September 12, 1943

gender
male

website

genre


About this author

He was born to a Burgher family of Dutch-Tamil-Sinhalese-Portuguese origin. He moved to England with his mother in 1954. After relocating to Canada in 1962, Ondaatje became a Canadian citizen. Ondaatje studied for a time at Bishops College School and Bishop's University in Lennoxville, Quebec, but moved to Toronto and received his BA from the University of Toronto and his MA from Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and began teaching at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario. In 1970 he settled in Toronto. From 1971 to 1988 he taught English Literature at York University and Glendon College in Toronto.

He and his wife, novelist and academic Linda Spalding, co-edit Brick, A Literary Journal, with Michael Redhill, Michael Hel...more


Michael Ondaatje isn't a Goodreads Author (yet), but he does have a blog, so here are some recent posts imported from his feed.

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Divisadero

The English Patient


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Anil’s Ghost
In the Skin of a Lion


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Published on March 08, 2010 18:16 • 426 views
Average rating: 3.79 · 125,420 ratings · 8,465 reviews · 49 distinct works · Similar authors
The English Patient
3.86 of 5 stars 3.86 avg rating — 69,294 ratings — published 1992 — 105 editions
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The Cat's Table
3.59 of 5 stars 3.59 avg rating — 15,771 ratings — published 2011 — 49 editions
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In the Skin of a Lion
3.88 of 5 stars 3.88 avg rating — 8,928 ratings — published 1987 — 28 editions
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Anil's Ghost
3.51 of 5 stars 3.51 avg rating — 9,493 ratings — published 2000 — 48 editions
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Divisadero
3.46 of 5 stars 3.46 avg rating — 7,609 ratings — published 2007 — 35 editions
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Running in the Family
3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 4,300 ratings — published 1982 — 35 editions
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Coming Through Slaughter
3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 3,274 ratings — published 1976 — 27 editions
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The Collected Works of Bill...
4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 2,213 ratings — published 1974 — 25 editions
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The Cinnamon Peeler: Select...
4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 1,585 ratings — published 1989 — 9 editions
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The Conversations: Walter M...
4.33 of 5 stars 4.33 avg rating — 762 ratings — published 2002 — 19 editions
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“She had always wanted words, she loved them; grew up on them. Words gave her clarity, brought reason, shape.”
Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient

“We die containing a richness of lovers and tribes, tastes we have swallowed, bodies we have plunged into and swum up as if rivers of wisdom, characters we have climbed into as if trees, fears we have hidden in as if caves.

I wish for all this to be marked on by body when I am dead. I believe in such cartography - to be marked by nature, not just to label ourselves on a map like the names of rich men and women on buildings. We are communal histories, communal books. We are not owned or monogamous in our taste or experience.”
Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient

“You think that you are an iconoclast, but you’re not. You just move, or replace what you cannot have. If you fail at something, you retreat into something else. Nothing changes you.... I left you because I knew I could never change you. You would stand in the room so still sometimes, as if the greatest betrayal of yourself would be to reveal one more inch of your character.”
Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient

Polls

Who is your favorite Canadian author?
(If you're having a hard time deciding, you can name your favorites in the comments.)

 
  3 votes, 33.3%

 
  2 votes, 22.2%

Margaret Laurence (write-in)
 
  1 vote, 11.1%

 
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Mavis Gallant (write-in)
 
  1 vote, 11.1%

 
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