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Arundhati Roy


Suzanna Arundhati Roy (born November 24, 1961) is an Indian novelist, writer and activist. She won the Booker Prize in 1997 for her first novel, The God of Small Things, and, in 2002, the Lannan Cultural Freedom Prize.

Roy was born in Shillong, Meghalaya to a Keralite Syrian Christian mother, the women's rights activist Mary Roy, and a Bengali Hindu father, a tea planter by profession. She spent her childhood in Aymanam in Kerala, and went to school in Corpus Christi, Kottayam, followed by The Lawrence School, Lovedale in the Nilgiris, Tamil Nadu. She then studied architecture at the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, where she met her first husband, architect Gerard DaCunha.

Roy met her second husband, filmmaker Pradip Krishen, in 1984, and became involved in film-making under his influence. She played a village girl in the award-winning movie Massey Sahib.

Roy is a cousin of the prominent media personality Prannoy Roy and lives in New Delhi.


Roy began writing her first novel, The God of Small Things in 1992, completing it in 1996. The book is semi-autobiographical and a major part captures her childhood experiences in Ayemenem. The book received the 1997 Man Booker Prize for Fiction, was listed as one of the New York Times Notable Books of the Year for 1997. The book reached fourth position in the New York Times Bestsellers list for Independent Fiction. She received half a million pounds as an advance, and rights to the book were sold in 21 countries.

The God of Small Things received good reviews, including one from John Updike in The New Yorker. Carmen Callil, chair of the Booker judges panel in 1996 though, called The God of Small Things "an execrable book" and said it should never have reached the shortlist.

Roy wrote the screenplays for In Which Annie Gives it Those Ones (1989) and Electric Moon (1992) and a television serial The Banyan Tree. She also wrote the documentary DAM/AGE: A Film with Arundhati Roy (2002).

In early 2007, Roy announced she would begin work on a second novel.

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