Micheal Ondaatje wrote The English Patient, which won a Booker Prize and was adapted into an Academy-award-winning film in 1996.
Rigoberta Munchu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1992. She is a Guatemalan activist for indigenous people. In 1984, she composed her powerful autobiography, I...Rigoberta Menchu.
If you want to know the skinny on Florida, ask Carl Hiaasen.
Allen Ginsberg was the loudest voice of the Beat Generation. His controversial "Howl" is one of the most influential American poems since World War II. A Jewish, Homosexual, Tibetan Buddhist, Son-of-an-Insane-Communist, Ginsberg spent his later years teaching at Brooklyn College before his death in 1997.
Latin-American Eduardo Galeano is the author of Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent. Read his interview with The Progressive.
Carlos Fuentes was something of a pilot light for "El Boom," a 1960's burst of Latin-American literature. His work is best described as "magical realism." Fuentes' most popular novel is La muerte de Artemio Cruz (The Death of Artemio Cruz), written in 1962.
Born in L.A., James Ellroy is a crime novelist. He is the author of 18 books, including L.A. Confidential. Read James Ellroy's interview with Identity Theory.
Barbara Ehrenreich is the author of several books and countless articles covering important social issues from poverty to feminism. A wealth of links to her work is available here.
Italian writer Umberto Eco authored the novels The Island of the Day Before, Foucault's Pendulum, and The Name of the Rose.
A journalist, screenwriter, and novelist, Joan Didion has authored over a dozen books, including Salvador and The White Album. She also co-wrote the screenplay for Up Close & Personal.