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Salman Rushdie's Biography
Indian-born British-American novelist whose work often combines magical realism with historical fiction and primarily deals with connections, disruptions, and migrations between Eastern and Western civilizations, typically set on the Indian subcontinent. Rushdie’s second novel, Midnight’s Children (1981), won the Booker Prize in 1981 and was deemed to be “the best novel of all winners” on two occasions, marking the 25th and the 40th anniversary of the prize. The Ayatollah of Iran issued a fatwa calling for Rushdie’s assassination on 14 February 1989 for writing his fourth novel The Satanic Verses (1988).
Muslims accused him of blasphemy over certain parts of The Satanic Verses, creating such a storm that a death contract was put out on him. Naturally the publicity created a best-seller as he fled incognito to England where the British government put Rushdie under police protection. The danger was real; his Japanese translator was murdered; his Italian translator was beaten and stabbed; his Norwegian publisher was shot and wounded.
His other books include The Moor’s Last Sigh (1995) and The Ground Beneath Her Feet (1999). His book Fury was released in late 2001 by Random House and was promptly reviewed as a “stunningly lousy novel.”
In March 1999 Rushdie had surgery to lift the upper folds of his eyes. A genetic defect gave him his heavy lidded look and the lack of tone had become so severe that he literally had to hold his lids up with his fingers to see.
He married American writer Marianne Wiggins in 1988. They began living apart six months after he went into hiding and divorced on 2 March 1993. In 1997 he married editor Elizabeth West and the couple had a son in May 1999. Still married to West, Rushdie became a couple with 29-year-old Indian model, author and New York City society girl Padma Lakshmi in early 2000. They married in Manhattan on 17 April 2004 in a traditional Hindu ceremony.
The author in exile was knighted by Queen Elizabeth on 15 June 2007 which sparked new calls for his death by Islamic militants. Shortly afterward, on 2 July 2007, he announced that he and his fourth wife Padma Lakshmi, age 36, were ending their marriage.
On 12 August 2022 a man stabbed Rushdie viciously and repeatedly after rushing onto the stage where the novelist was scheduled to deliver a lecture at an event in Chautauqua, New York. The 75-year-old Rushdie was airlifted to a trauma centre in Erie, Pennsylvania, where he underwent surgery for his severe injuries.
Link to Wikipedia biography