Daisy Rockwell is an American writer and translator of Hindi and Urdu language literature. He shared the International Booker Prize (2022) with the Indian author Geetanjali Shree For translation in English of Shri’s Hindi language novel ‘Ret Samadhi’ titled ‘Ret Ka Maqbara’. He is also an artist and painter.
Daisy Rockwell was born in 1969 (age 53 years; by 2022) in Massachusetts. Belonging to a family of artists, Rockwell urged him to pursue his creative impulses.
A classics major, she studied Latin, French, Greek and German. Later, he started learning Hindi in college. In the second year, she enrolled in a social science class. He developed an interest in learning Hindi after attending a translation seminar with AK Ramanujan for three months at the beginning of his graduation. In college, her professor Susan Rudolph talks about how she and her husband spend every fourth year living in India, where they write books together. Thereafter, Daisy followed the same path and came to India. He earned his PhD in South Asian Literature with his thesis on Indian novelist Upendranath Ashk.
parents and siblings
Both her parents are artists. His grandfather, Norman Rockwell, was a popular painter whose works reflect American social history. His father’s name is Jarvis.
husband and children
Their daughter’s name is Seraphina.
as a translator
In 1995, after meeting Upendranath Ashk, Rockwell spent two decades translating his 1947 Hindi novel Girti (Girti Divare) into English, translated into English as ‘Falling Walls’, published in 2015 was. Those who aspire to be writers in the 1930s but fail at every turn.
In 2016, he translated Bhishma Sahni’s 1974 Hindi novel ‘Tamas’. The novel depicts the horrors of senseless communal violence after a tanner is bribed to kill a pig and the animal’s carcass is discovered the next morning on the steps of a local mosque.
In 2018, she translated Khadija Mastur’s 1962 Urdu novel ‘Aangan’ into English titled ‘The Women’s Courtyard’. Set in the 1940s, the novel focuses on the claustrophobic lives of women whose entire existence was surrounded by the four walls of their homes, and for whom the outside world remained an insurmountable dream.
In 2019, he translated Krishna Sobti’s biographical Hindi novel Gurjar Gurjar Hindustan (Gujarat Pakistan to Gujarat Hindustan) into English, titled ‘A Gujarat Here, A Gujarat There’. In the novel, Sobti talks about her first job as a governess for the child Maharaja of Sirohi, a district in the Indian state of Rajasthan, after the Partition of India.
In 2021, she translated Geetanjali ShreeHindi novel of ‘Ret Samadhi’ in English titled ‘Ret Ka Maqbara’. The novel comically depicts the story of an 80-year-old Indian woman, who is turning into a fiery teenager day by day and insists on traveling to Pakistan after the death of her husband.
On 26 April 2022, Tomb of Sand became the first Indian book to win the International Booker Prize. , The writer-translator duo received a literary prize of £50,000, which they divided equally. Translations of other literary works by him include Ashq’s In the City a Mirror Wandering and Hats and Doctors and Mastur’s A Promised Land.
as an artist
A painter, Rockwell created cover illustrations for both the Hindi and English versions of Tomb of Sand. She regularly posts her paintings on Flickr. She paints under the pseudonym Lapata, which is Urdu for ‘missing’ or ‘absconding’.
as a novelist
Rockwell wrote ‘Upendranath Ashk: A Critical Biography’ (2004).
In 2012, he wrote ‘The Little Book of Terror’, a volume of paintings and essays on the Global War on Terror, published by Foxhead Books.
In April 2014, his novel Taste was published by Foxhead Books. The novel follows Daniel, who sets out on a cross-country quest to find answers about his past after making a shocking search through long sealed documents.
Awards, Honors, Achievements
- Modern Language Association’s Aldo and Jean Scaglione Award for Translation of a Literary Work for A Gujarat Here, A Gujarat There (2019)
- International Booker Prize (2022) for the translation of Gitanjali Shree’s Hindi-language novel ‘Rit Samadhi’ into English titled ‘The Tomb of the Sand’.
Facts / Trivia
- The translation process for Tomb of Sand took place via email throughout the COVID 19 pandemic with Rockwell in Vermont and Mr. in New Delhi.
- Apart from congratulatory messages for the winners, Amul dedicated an occasional ad to celebrate Daisy Rockwell and Geetanjali ShreeWinning the International Booker Prize (2022).
- Daisy Rockwell is a carnivore.
- She occasionally consumes alcoholic beverages.