Graham Greene Additional Biography


(Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults)

Graham Greene was born October 2, 1904, at Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, England, the fourth of six children. His exposure to books at an early...

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(Critical Edition of Dramatic Literature)

Graham Greene was born on October 2, 1904, in Berkhamsted, a small town twenty-eight miles northwest of London, and was the fourth of six children. His father, Charles Henry Greene, was a teacher, and later headmaster, at the Berkhamsted School. Being the son of the headmaster created difficulties for the sensitive youngster. He was victimized, or so he believed, by his schoolmates and made the butt of their jokes. His bouts of depression led him, at an early age, to several attempts at suicide, which, in later years, he understood to be merely disguised pleas for attention and understanding rather than serious efforts to end his own life. In his teens, he was determined to be a writer, to demonstrate to his schoolmates and to the...

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(Literary Essentials: Short Fiction Masterpieces)

Educated at Berkhamsted School and Balliol College, Oxford, Graham Greene served in the Foreign Office, London, from 1941 to 1944. He married Vivien Dayrell-Browning in 1927 and had two children. He was a staff member of the London Times from 1926 to 1930, and he served as movie critic (1937-1940) and literary editor (1940-1941) of The Spectator. He also served as director for Eyre and Spottiswoode, publishers (1944-1948), and for The Bodley Head, publishers (1958-1968). The recipient of numerous awards, Greene received the Hawthornden Prize for The Labyrinthine Ways in 1941; the Black Memorial Prize for The Heart of the Matter in 1949; the Shakespeare Prize, Hamburg, 1968; and the Thomas More Medal, 1973. Other awards of distinction include a D.Litt. from the University of Cambridge in 1962, a D.Litt. from Edinburgh University, 1967, Honorary Fellow at Balliol College (Oxford) in 1963, Companion of Honor in 1966, and Chevalier of the French Legion of Honor in 1969. With fifty-four books to his credit, Greene remained a productive writer throughout his life. His last publication was in 1988, but he was said to be working on a new book at the time of his death on April 3, 1991. Greene spent his last years in Antibes, France, and died in Vevey, Switzerland.


(Survey of Novels and Novellas)

Henry Graham Greene was born on October 2, 1904, in the town of Berkhamsted, England. The fourth of six children, he was not especially close to his father, perhaps because of his father’s position as headmaster of Berkhamsted School, which Greene attended. Some of the boys took sadistic delight in his ambiguous position, and two in particular caused him such humiliation that they created in him an excessive desire to prove himself. Without them, he claimed, he might never have written a book.

Greene made several attempts at suicide during these unhappy years; he later insisted these were efforts to avoid boredom rather than to kill himself. At Oxford, he tried for a while to avoid boredom by drinking alcohol to...

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(Masterpieces of Fiction, Detective and Mystery Edition)

Graham Greene was born to a modestly distinguished family on October 2, 1904, in Berkhamsted, England. His parents were Charles Henry Greene and Marion Raymond Greene. His father was the headmaster of a good, if not prestigious, school for boys, Berkhamsted School, and Greene was educated there.

Greene had some serious emotional difficulties as a boy, caused in part by his awkward position as a student in a residential school where his father was in charge. He often experienced isolation and loneliness, feelings that would be common to protagonists of his novels. Bored by school and life, prone to depression, haunted by a sense of evil and religious insecurities, he was eventually obliged to enter psychoanalysis. This...

(The entire section is 534 words.)


(Masterpieces of World Literature, Critical Edition)

Graham Greene, born in Berkhamsted, England, on October 2, 1904, was the fourth of six children. His father, Charles Henry Greene, was a history and classics master who, in 1910, became headmaster of Berkhamsted School.

As a highly sensitive, imaginative youth from a respected upper-middle-class family, Greene had the opportunity to develop more exotic emotional problems than are characteristic of children of the lower classes. When he first discovered that he could read, he hid this fact from his parents out of fear that they would then make him enter preparatory school. He began to live a covert life, secretly reading books about adventure and mystery of which his parents would not approve. As a child, Greene also...

(The entire section is 1592 words.)


(Masterpieces of World Literature, Critical Edition)

Despite the variety of literary forms that Graham Greene explored, his greatness clearly lies in his fiction. Unlike writers of the 1920’s and 1930’s, he practically ignored the experimental novel. Rather, he followed the loose tradition of such diverse writers as Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, Robert Louis Stevenson, H. Rider Haggard, Joseph Conrad, and Marjorie Bowen.

Greene’s main achievements in the novel are twofold. First, he is a master storyteller, one of the chief reasons for his popular success. Second, he has created a unique vision of the world, having turned his personal obsessions into universal works of art. Greene both lived and wrote on the dangerous edge of things, and in the world of his novels he has re-created the bittersweet conflict between the fascination of innocence and the hell-haunted drama of human existence. It is a surprising, suspenseful, frightening, and dark world that he has created, but it is above all a human place, peopled with sad and suffering men and women with a profound longing for peace, some of whom occasionally startle the reader with their compassion and love and childlike simplicity.


(Great Authors of World Literature, Critical Edition)

Henry Graham Greene, though not innovative stylistically, was a master craftsman in both the fields of the genre novel (which he called an “entertainment”) and the “serious” novel. He was the fourth of six children. His father was headmaster of Berkhamsted School; Robert Louis Stevenson was a first cousin of his mother’s. During his boyhood, Greene made several attempts to take his own life. He continued to be oppressed by ennui during his Oxford University years. Like his contemporary Evelyn Waugh, Greene as a young man became a Roman Catholic convert. Whereas Waugh turned to Catholicism after a failed marriage, Greene came to the Church in 1926 through his marriage to Vivien Dayrell-Browning. The marriage, which created...

(The entire section is 957 words.)


(Short Stories for Students)

Graham Greene Published by Gale Cengage

Graham Greene was born in Hertfordshire, England, on October 2, 1904, to Marion (first cousin of the writer Robert Louis Stevenson) and...

(The entire section is 313 words.)


(Novels for Students)

Graham Greene was born in Hertfordshire, England, on October 2, 1904, to Marion Greene (first cousin of the writer Robert Louis Stevenson)...

(The entire section is 356 words.)


(Native Americans: Historical Biographies)

Article abstract: One of the most visible contemporary Native American actors, Graham Greene is probably best known for his film roles in Dances with Wolves{$I{I}Dances with Wolves{/I}} (1990), Thunderheart (1992), Maverick (1994), and Education of Little Tree (1997) and his television roles in L.A. Law and Northern Exposure.

The second of six children born to working-class parents, Graham Greene dropped out of school at the age of sixteen and worked at various jobs as a laborer, builder of railway cars, rock-band roadie, high-steelworker, landscape gardener, factory laborer, bartender, and carpenter. His first acting role, in 1974, was as part of a Toronto theater company. His first film role cast him...

(The entire section is 296 words.)