02/Aug/2014 - Last News Update: 03:03

Booker Prize winner Barry Unsworth dies

Category: Entertainment

Published: 8th Jun 2012 11:23:46

Barry Unsworth, the historical fiction author who shared the Booker Prize in 1992, has died at the age of 81.

His US agent told the New York Times he died in Perugia, Italy, of lung cancer.

The joint Booker victory of Unsworth's Sacred Hunger and Michael Ondaatje's The English Patient prompted a rule change preventing split decisions.

The Durham-born author was also shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1980 for Pascali's Island and Morality Play in 1995.

Born in 1930, Unsworth was renowned for his extensive research.

His first novel The Partnership was published in 1966, while his most recent - The Quality of Mercy, a continuation of Sacred Hunger - came out last year.

Sacred Hunger, which dealt with the Atlantic slave trade of the 18th Century, was an example of the way Unsworth used allegorical stories set in the past to comment on the present.

Pascali's Island, his first historical novel, was turned into a film starring Sir Ben Kingsley and Charles Dance in 1988.

Morality Play became the basis of 2003's film The Reckoning, featuring Paul Bettany and Willem Dafoe.

His other novels included The Greeks Have a Word For It, Losing Nelson and The Ruby In Her Navel.

"All my fiction starts from a feeling of unique perception, the pressure of a secret, a story that needs to be told," the author once said.

"Whatever the ramifications, whatever turns the path takes, the beginning is always there, in a particular moment, a particular point of access."

BBC News External Link Show Citation

Latest News

Harvard Citation

BBC News, 2012. Booker Prize winner Barry Unsworth dies [Online] (Updated 8th Jun 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1433441/Booker-Prize-winner-Barry-Unsworth-dies [Accessed 2nd Aug 2014]

News In Other Categories

  • Manchester Albert Square cobbles recorded ahead of tram link

    Hundreds of cobbles in a Manchester square are to be photographed to ensure they are returned in the same position once a new tram link has been built.
  • Bristol Academy extends reach overseas with first foreign students

    With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
  • BMJ 'right' in statins claims row

    An investigation has backed the British Medical Journal's handling of two controversial and inaccurate articles it published on the harms of cholesterol-reducing statins.
  • Belcoo: Hundreds attend public meeting on fracking in County Fermanagh

    Hundreds of people have attended a public meeting to discuss fracking in County Fermanagh.
  • New ENO music director pledges to take risks despite cuts

    The incoming music director of the English National Opera (ENO) has said the company will keep taking risks in spite of funding cuts.
  • New ENO music director pledges to take risks despite cuts

    The incoming music director of the English National Opera (ENO) has said the company will keep taking risks in spite of funding cuts.