Thomas Keneally

(Thomas Michael Keneally)

Thomas Keneally
Thomas Keneally
  • Born: October 7, 1935
  • Nationality: Australian
  • Profession: Novelist

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Thomas Michael Keneally, AO is a prolific Australian novelist, playwright, and essayist. He is best known for writing Schindler's Ark, the Booker Prize-winning novel of 1982 which was inspired by the efforts of Poldek Pfefferberg, a Holocaust survivor. The book would later be adapted to Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List, which won the Academy Award for Best Picture.

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And I definitely wanted to be a writer, but I felt a duty now, having used up those educational resources, I felt a duty to the church and my parents to become a priest.
And I found both literature and the church very dramatic presences in the world of the 1950s.
And I liked pluralist Australia. I got a taste for pluralist Australia. I like, I like Australians and I can't believe that they're going to go to hell because they tell a good dirty joke, you know.
And I think my sexuality was heavily repressed by the church, by the, you know, the design of the mortal sins.
And I was very interested in the priesthood.
And it is a folly to try to craft a novel for the screen, to write a novel with a screen contract in mind.
And so um, I knew that I really didn't want to be a priest and didn't want to be a celibate, though I could probably manage it. Um, and um, ultimately I left.
Australia integrated the - brought on the ships and unleashed in the society the dogs of sectarianism, which had existed in other places - in Glasgow, in Liverpool and of course in Ireland, north and south. Society
But I was also a brat. I used to belong to a gang that went looking for fights with other gangs.
But in practice Australia - the pluralism of Australia - sorry the sectarianism to an extent stopped at the time you took your uniform off after coming home from school. Time
I must apologise because I know all writers have memories of being on the outer because it's the children on the side of the playground who become the dangerous writers.
I thought I'd definitely be a writer, whatever I did.
I was never any good at cricket thought I love it as a, as a sort of mystery. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
In a way Australia is like Catholicism. The company is sometimes questionable and the landscape is grotesque. But you always come back.
My brother arrived some months after my father left. Um, and he ah, was thus eight years younger than me and it was um, you know, it was such a time that my mother probably had people wondering was it his. Time
So I remember both medicine, because I frequently sick, particularly with asthma for which there was no proper treatment then, and in religion I had a strong sense of there being a patriarchy. Religion & God
So I was very close to ordination. I was delighted to be ordained a deacon, which is the last step between, before becoming a priest. But then it all fell apart.
So nonetheless given the importance that was placed on sport in Australia, I wanted to be part of that scene, particularly since I had felt very strongly in my early schooling being marginalised even in the Catholic school. Sports & Athletics
Thomas was my true name but everyone knew me as Mick, except my mother, who knew me as definitely Michael.
Um, what I found though about the Christian Brothers is this: that they were certainly muscular.
You know, so I was a weird eccentric kid but I did believe in the power of the word and of the word being made flesh I suppose, which again I suppose came from my temperament as well as my upbringing. Power

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