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Marilynne Robinson (born November 26, 1943) is an Americanmarker author. Her 1980 novel Housekeeping (see 1980 in literature) won a Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award for best first novel and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Her second novel, Gilead (see 2004 in literature), was acclaimed by critics and received the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the 2004 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction, and the 2005 Ambassador Book Award. Her third novel, Home, published in 2008, was a finalist for the 2008 National Book Award, and won the 2009 Orange Prize for Fiction. Also in 2009, she held a Dwight H. Terry Lectureship at Yale Universitymarker, giving a series of talks entitled Absence of Mind: The Dispelling of Inwardness from the Modern Myth of the Self.


Robinson was born and grew up in Sandpoint, Idahomarker, and did her undergraduate work at Pembroke College, the former women's college at Brown Universitymarker, receiving her B.A. in 1966. She received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Washingtonmarker in 1977.

Robinson is also the author of Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear Pollution (1989) and The Death of Adam: Essays on Modern Thought (1998). She has written articles and book reviews for Harper’s, The Paris Review, and The New York Times Book Review.

She has been writer-in-residence or visiting professor at numerous universities, including the University of Kentmarker, Amherstmarker, and the University of Massachusetts' MFA Program for Poets & Writers. She teaches at the Iowa Writers' Workshopmarker and makes her home in Iowa City. Robinson took a sabbatical in fall 2007 to complete her third novel. Published in September 2008, Home is a companion piece to Gilead, focusing on the Boughton family during the same time period that Gilead covers..



  • Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear Pollution (1989)
  • The Death of Adam: Essays on Modern Thought (1998)


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