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Sherman alexie 2007

Sherman Alexie in 2007. Photo by Larry D. Moore. Licensed under Creative Commons, courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Sherman Alexie
Born Sherman Joseph Alexie, Jr.
October 7, 1966 (1966-10-07) (age 53)
Wellpinit, Washington
Occupation Poet, Short-Story Writer, Novelist, Screenwriter, Filmmaker
Nationality Spokane/Coeur d'Alene/American
Genres Native American literature, Humor, Documentary fiction
Literary movement Indigenous Nationalism
Notable work(s) The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Smoke Signals (film)
Notable award(s) American Book Award, National Book Award, PEN/Hemingway, PEN/Faulkner

Sherman Joseph Alexie, Jr. (born October 7, 1966) is a Native American poet, prose writer, filmmaker, and occasional comedian.

LifeEdit

Alexie was born on October 7, 1966[1] in the Spokane Indian Reservation in Wellpinit, Washington. He was born with hydrocephalus, which caused him to suffer from seizures throughout his childhood.[1] Alexie made the conscious decision to leave his reservation and attend Reardan High School in Reardan, where he knew he would receive a better education.[2]

In 1985, Alexie enrolled at Gonzaga University on a scholarship. In 1987, he transferred to Washington State University (WSU), where he fell under the influence of Alexander Kuo. Kuo inspired Alexie to write poetry, and soon after graduating, Alexie published his first collection of poems, The Business of Fancy Dancing, through Hanging Loose Press.[2]

In 2005, Alexie became a founding Board Member of Longhouse Media, a non-profit organization that is committed to teaching filmmaking skills to Native American youth, and to use media for cultural expression and social change. Mr. Alexie has long supported youth programs and initiatives dedicated to uplifting at-risk Native youth.[3]

Two of Alexie's best known works are The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven (1994), a book of short stories and Smoke Signals, a film. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, a semi-autobiographical young adult novel for which he won a 2007 National Book Award[4], was his latest commercial success.

Alexie is married to Diane Tomhave, who is of Hidatsa, Ho-Chunk and Potawatomi heritage. They live in Seattle with their 2 sons.[2]

BasketballEdit

Alexie is also noted for his love of basketball, both as an audience member and a player. He was a loyal and enthusiastic supporter of the now relocated Seattle SuperSonics. His writings on the sport are frequently cited by notable basketball writers, such as ESPN's Henry Abbott.

Prior to the SuperSonics' relocation, the City of Seattle filed a lawsuit against the team's ownership group headed by businessman Clayton Bennett in an attempt to force the team to play out the remainder of its lease (which was to expire in 2010) in Seattle's KeyArena. Alexie testified in favor of the city, stressing the importance of the Sonics to Seattle's culture and community, as well as to individual fans - an experience that he would later describe as the "most terrifying and stressful public speaking gig I've ever had to endure."[5] However, the City of Seattle settled with the ownership group, permitting the team to break its lease and move to Oklahoma City for the following season, in exchange for a multi-million dollar cash settlement. Despite the personal and communal loss, Alexie retains his love for the game, and continues to follow professional basketball passionately.

WritingEdit

2 of Alexie's best known works are The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven (1994), a book of short stories and Smoke Signals, a film. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, a semi-autobiographical young adult novel for which he won a 2007 National Book Award[6], was his latest commercial success.[7]

Alexie's stories have been included in several prestigious short story anthologies, including The Best American Short Stories 2004, edited by Lorrie Moore; and Pushcart Prize XXIX of the Small Presses. Additionally, a number of his pieces have been published in various literary magazines and journals, as well as online publications.

RecognitionEdit

Awards  Edit

  • 1992: National Endowment for the Arts Poetry Fellowship
  • The New York Times Book Review Notable book of the Year for The Business of Fancydancing
  • 1996: Before Columbus Foundation: American Book Award
  • Granta Magazine: Twenty Best American Novelists Under the Age of 40
  • New York Times Notable Book for Indian Killer
  • People Magazine: Best of Pages
  • 1999: The New Yorker: 20 Writers for the 21st Century
  • 2007: National Book Award prize for Young People's literature for The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
  • 2010: PEN/Faulkner Award for War Dances [4]
  • 2010: Native Writers' Circle of the Americas Lifetime Achievement Award
  • 2010: recipient of the Puterbaugh " award, the first American Puterbaugh fellow
  • 2010: California Young Reader Medal for The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian[8]

PublicationsEdit

PoetryEdit

  • The Business of Fancydancing: Stories and poems. Brooklyn, NY: Hanging Loose, 1992.
  • I Would Steal Horses. Niagara Falls, NY: Slipstream, 1992.
  • Old Shirts and New Skins. Los Angeles, CA: American Indian Studies Center, University of California, Los Angeles, 1993.
  • First Indian on the Moon. Brooklyn, NY: Hanging Loose, 1993.
  • Seven Mourning Songs For the Cedar Flute I Have Yet to Learn to Play (1993)
  • Water Flowing Home: Poems. Boise, ID: Limberlost, 1995.
  • The Summer of Black Widows. Brooklyn, NY: Hanging Loose, 1996.
  • The Man Who Loves Salmon. Boise, Id: Limberlost, 1998.
  • One Stick Song. Brooklyn, NY: Hanging Loose, 2000.
  • Dangerous Astronomy. Boise, ID: Limberlost, 2005.
  • Face. Brooklyn, NY: Hanging Loose, 2009.
  • What I've Stolen, What I've Earned. Brooklyn, NY: Hanging Loose, 2014.

NovelsEdit

  • Reservation Blues. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 1995.
  • Indian Killer. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 1996.
  • Flight: A novel. New York: Black Cat, 2007.

Short fictionEdit

  • The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 1993.
  • The Toughest Indian in the World. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 2000.
  • Ten Little Indians: Stories. New York: Grove, 2003.
  • War Dances. New York: Grove, 2009.
  • Blasphemy: New and selected stories. New York: Grove, 2012.

JuvenileEdit

  • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. Boston: Little, Brown, 2007.

OtherEdit


Except where noted, bibliographical information courtesy WorldCat.[9]

Audio / videoEdit

I Would Steal Horses by Sherman Alexie

I Would Steal Horses by Sherman Alexie

FilmsEdit

  • 'Smoke Signals (writer, 1998; adapted from a short story, "This is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona" in Lone Ranger and Tonto)
  • The Business of Fancydancing (writer and director, 2002)
  • 49? (writer, 2003)
  • The Exiles (presenter, 2008)

See alsoEdit

Sherman alexie poem, dangerous astronomy

Sherman alexie poem, dangerous astronomy

ReferencesEdit

NotesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 Johansen, Bruce E. (2010). Native Americans today : a biographical dictionary. Santa Barbara, Calif.: Greenwood Press. pp. 7-10. ISBN 9780313355547. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Official Sherman Alexie website
  3. [1]
  4. [2] "2007 National Book Award Young People's Literature Winner: Interview With Sherman Alexie", interview by Rita Williams-Garcia
  5. Sherman Alexie (2008-07-29). "Sixty-One Things I Learned During the Sonics Trial". The Stranger. http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/Content?oid=631015&hp. Retrieved 2008-07-31. 
  6. [3] "2007 National Book Award Young People's Literature Winner: Interview With Sherman Alexie", interview by Rita Williams-Garcia
  7. "In His Own Literary World, a Native Son Without Borders" article by Eric Konigsberg in The New York Times October 20, 2009
  8. "Winners". California Young Reader Medal. http://www.californiayoungreadermedal.org/winners.htm. Retrieved 2011-05-08. 
  9. Search results = au:Sherman Alexie, WorldCat, OCLC Online Computer Library Center Inc. Web, Apr. 18, 2014.

External linksEdit

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Books
Audio
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