Emma Donoghue


Emma Donoghue is an Irish-Canadian novelist, literary historian, teacher, playwright, and scriptwriter living in London Ontario. Born in Dublin, Ireland, in October 1969, Emma (named for the Jane Austen character) is the youngest of eight children of Frances and Denis Donoghue (the literary critic). She attended Catholic convent schools in Dublin, apart from one eye-opening year in New York at the age of ten. In 1990, Donoghue earned a first-class honours BA in English and French from University College Dublin. She moved to England, and in 1997 received her PhD on the concept of friendship between men and women in eighteenth-century English fiction, from the University of Cambridge. In addition a successful writing career, Donoghue has taught creative writing for the Cheltenham Literary Festival, the Arvon Foundation, the University of Western Ontario and the University of York. Emma Donoghue’s writing adds a different and many times controversial voice to modern fiction created by women. Her subject matter is often drawn from real events and inspired by historical accounts and while it may not be suited to everyone’s taste, Donoghue’s work has certainly pushed the boundaries of women’s writing and redefined the standards of literary success. Donoghue has garnered many awards and distinctions: 2011 British Orange Prize for Fiction Written by Women nomination (for Room); (shortlisted) 2010 Man Booker Prize nomination (for Room); 2010 Canada's Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize; New York Times Book Review's 10 Best Books of 2010 (for Room); 1997 Stonewall Book Award (for Hood); 2002 Ferro-Grumley Award for Lesbian Fiction (for Slammerkin). Donoghue’s screenplay for The Room was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay and won the Canadian Screen Award for Best Adapted Screenplay and the Irish Film and Television Academy Award for Best Screenplay. After years of commuting between England, Ireland, and Canada, in 1998 Emma Donoghue settled in London, Ontario, where she lives with her partner Chris Roulston and two children.

Related Events

Emma Donoghue & Chris Roulston: In Conversation

November 9, 2023 at 5:00pm

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