Angela Carter (née Stalker) was born on May 7, 1940. She worked as a journalist and had a bachelor’s degree in English literature. She taught creative writing at Sheffield University, Brown University, University of Iowa, and the University of Texas at Austin. Angela Carter died of lung cancer in 1992.
Angela Carter was a major force of Postmodern literature. Her work often plays with paradox, features unreliable narrators, and distorts reality. By exploring themes of sexuality and gender and revisiting and retelling fairy tales and folklore, Carter revolutionized literary magical realism. Her influence can be seen in contemporary writers such as Anne Enright, Neil Gaiman, Sarah Waters, Nicola Barker, David Mitchell, Ali Smith, and Jeanette Winterson.
Angela Carter. The Estate of Angela Carter, 2018, usa.angelacarter.co.uk/. Accessed 16 November 2018.
Dugdale, John. “Angela’s Influence: What we owe to Carter.” The Guardian, 16 February 2017, www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2017/feb/16/from-fifty-shades-to-buffy-what-we-owe-to-angela-carter. Accessed on 20 November 2018.
Hughes, William. “Carter, Angela Olive.” Historical Dictionary of Gothic Literature, Scarecrow Press, 2013, pp. 62-64. Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts. Gale Virtual Reference Library, www.cengage.com/search/showresults.do?N=197+4294904997.
Jones, Jane Anderson, and Brian Stableford. “Angela Carter.” Critical Survey of Long Fiction, Fourth Edition, Jan. 2010, pp. 1–5. Literary Reference Center, www.ebsco.com/products/research-databases/literary-reference-.
Major Themes in Carter’s Work
- Fairy Tales
- Sexuality and Gender
- Female Empowerment
The video below provides an excellent introduction to Angela Carter, her work, and major themes. In addition to biographical content, the video is interspersed with interviews from Angela Carter that can provide a greater understanding of her novels, stories, her use of fairy tales, and her perceptions of gender and sexuality.
BBC Four. “Introducing Angela Carter.” YouTube, uploaded by Nadine Muller, 11 March 2013, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81uU7TXH3YE&t=182s. Accessed on 17 November 2018.
Joanne Gass has compiled a thorough bibliography of Carter’s works. This bibliography was assembled in 1994. Works not included in this bibliography are listed below:
Carter, Angela. Burning Your Boats. Penguin. 1995
Carter, Angela. The Curious Room: Plays, Film Scripts and an Opera. Random House. 1996.
Carter, Angela. Shaking a Leg: Collected Journalism and Writing. Penguin. 1997.
Carter, Angela. Unicorn: The Poetry of Angela Carter. Profile Books. 2015.
Gass, Joanne M. “An Angela Carter Bibliography.” Review of Contemporary Fiction, vol. 14, no. 3, Fall 1994, p. 94. Literary Reference Center. www.ebsco.com/products/research-databases/literary-reference-center.