Gee
2004 Shortlist

The White Family

artwork-image

ABOUT
THE BOOK

The Whites are an ordinary British family: love, hatred, sex and death hold them together and tear them apart. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, Alfred White, a London park keeper, still rules his home with fierce conviction and inarticulate tenderness. May, his clever, passive wife, loves Alfred but conspires against him. Their three children are no longer close; the successful elder son, Darren, has escaped to the USA. When Alfred collapses on duty, his beautiful, childless daughter Shirley, who lives with Elroy, a black social worker, is brought face to face with Alfred’s younger son Dirk, who hates and fears all black people. The scene is set for violence. In the end Alfred and May are forced to make a climactic decision: does justice matter more than kinship? This ambitious, ground-breaking novel takes on the taboo subject of racial hatred as it looks for the roots of violence within the family and within British society.

ABOUT
THE AUTHOR Maggie
Gee

Novelist Maggie Gee was born in Poole, Dorset, and educated at state schools and Somerville College, Oxford where she completed two degrees in English.  After working in publishing as an editor, she took a research job at Wolverhampton Polytechnic where she completed a PhD. Her first published novel was Dying, in Other Words (1981), an experimental black comedy in which a supposedly dead woman triumphantly rewrites the story of her own death. In 1982 Maggie Gee was selected as one of the original 20 ‘Best of Young British Novelists’ and became Writing Fellow at the University of East Anglia.

Maggie Gee is a Fellow and Vice-President of the Royal Society of Literature. She has been a member of the Society of Authors’ Committee of Management and the government Public Lending Right committee, and was from 2004-2008 the first female Chair of Council of the Royal Society of Literature. She is now one of its Vice Presidents. She is Visiting Professor of Creative Writing at Sheffield Hallam University and lives in London with her husband, the writer and broadcaster, Nicholas Rankin. In 2012 she was awarded an OBE for services to literature.

Novelist Maggie Gee was born in Poole, Dorset, and educated at state schools and Somerville College, Oxford where she completed two degrees in English.  After working in publishing as an editor, she took a research job at Wolverhampton Polytechnic where she completed a PhD. Her first published novel was Dying, in Other Words (1981), an experimental black comedy in which a supposedly dead woman triumphantly rewrites the story of her own death. In 1982 Maggie Gee was selected as one of the original 20 ‘Best of Young British Novelists’ and became Writing Fellow at the University of East Anglia.

Maggie Gee is a Fellow and Vice-President of the Royal Society of Literature. She has been a member of the Society of Authors’ Committee of Management and the government Public Lending Right committee, and was from 2004-2008 the first female Chair of Council of the Royal Society of Literature. She is now one of its Vice Presidents. She is Visiting Professor of Creative Writing at Sheffield Hallam University and lives in London with her husband, the writer and broadcaster, Nicholas Rankin. In 2012 she was awarded an OBE for services to literature.

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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Date published
07/08/2002
Country
United Kingdom
Original Language
English
Author
Publisher
Saqi Books

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