Study Guide

Angela Carter

Angela Carter Biography

Biography (Great Authors of World Literature, Critical Edition)

Angela Carter was born Angela Olive Stalker. She spent the war years in Yorkshire with her grandmother before attending school in Balham. She was a junior reporter on the Croydon Advertiser when she married Paul Carter in 1960. Angela Carter read English at the University of Bristol from 1962 through 1965 and published her first novel, Shadow Dance, a year after graduating. She won the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize for Several Perceptions and the Somerset Maugham Award for The Magic Toyshop, a deftly caustic allegory of female maturation and eventual empowerment.

Carter lived in Japan for more than two years before her divorce in 1972. Her writings of this period became increasingly phantasmagorical. Love is an intense study of the dark waywardness of passion. The futuristic fantasy Heroes and Villains depicts a post-Holocaust world whose ruined cities are inhabited by professors and soldiers, while forests metamorphosed by mutation are gradually reclaiming the earth. The protagonist of The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman undertakes a bizarre quest to rescue the world from a threatened annihilation of reason and reality. He moves across a phantasmagoric landscape whose symbolism reflects the most secret, shameful, and yet cherished impulses of the human heart. Such journeys from decadent order to a chaos that is pregnant with new possibilities in spite of its brutality became the basic pattern of almost all of Carter’s subsequent work.

After a brief hiatus, Carter’s career got under way again when she obtained an Arts Council Fellowship in Sheffield in 1976. She subsequently settled in London with Mark Pearce, the father of her son Alexander, who was born in 1983. During the 1980’s, she taught creative writing at a number of American universities and at the University of East Anglia. A symbolically...

(The entire section is 775 words.)

Angela Carter Biography (Literary Essentials: Short Fiction Masterpieces)

Angela Olive Carter was born Angela Olive Stalker in Eastbourne, soon after the outbreak of World War II. She was evacuated to Yorkshire to live with her grandmother, returning south after the war’s end to attend school in Balham in south London. After leaving school she worked as a junior reporter on the Croydon Advertiser. She married Paul Carter in 1960. She read English at the University of Bristol from 1962 to 1965 and published her first novel, Shadow Dance, a year after graduating.

Carter lived in Japan for more than two years before her divorce in 1972, and there was a distinct hiatus in her work thereafter, although her productivity increased again after she became the Arts Council Fellow in creative writing at the University of Sheffield in 1976—an appointment she held for two years. She returned to London thereafter, eventually settling with Mark Pearce, the father of her son Alexander, who was born in 1983. During the 1980’s she taught creative writing for brief periods at a number of universities, including Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, the University of Adelaide in Australia, and the University of East Anglia in England. She died of lung cancer in 1992.

Angela Carter Biography (Survey of Novels and Novellas)

Angela Olive Stalker was born in Eastbourne, Sussex, England, on May 7, 1940. After working as a journalist from 1958 to 1961 in Croyden, Surrey, she attended Bristol University, from which she received a bachelor’s degree in English literature in 1965. While married to Paul Carter between 1960 and 1972, she traveled widely and lived for several years in Japan. From 1976 to 1978, she served as Arts Council of Great Britain Fellow in Creative Writing at Sheffield University. She was a visiting professor at Brown University, the University of Texas, Austin, and the University of Iowa. She spent the last years of her life in London, living with Mark Pearce, the father of her son Alexander, who was born in 1983. She died of lung cancer in London on February 16, 1992.

Angela Carter Biography (Short Stories for Students)

When Angela Carter died of cancer on February 16, 1992, she was only 51-years-old. In her relatively short lifetime, she wrote nine novels,...

(The entire section is 322 words.)

Angela Carter Biography (Short Stories for Students)

Carter was born in Eastborne, England, in 1940, the daughter of Hugh and Olive Stalker. It was the beginning of World War II and, fearing...

(The entire section is 423 words.)