Sir V.S. Naipaul, one of the most widely read and admired literary figures of the contemporary world, has died at the age of 85.
From his humble beginnings as a son of East Indian father in Trinidad Naipaul rose to the height of his literary career as a Nobel Prize laureate for literature. He dedicated his life to literature inspired by his father’s love of writing. The road towards recognition had not been easy as Naipaul struggled to find his authentic voice as a young foreign writer in 1950s London. In his writing Naipaul explored themes of identity, culture, religion and politics in the postcolonial world. His novels and travel writing brought him both accolades and criticism. His travel writing ranges far and wide and his works explore fates of colonial and postcolonial societies in Africa, India and West Indies.
V.S. Naipaul wrote over 30 books, both novels and non-fiction. He was knighted in 1989. He was awarded the David Cohen British Literature Prize by the Arts Council of England in 1993 and the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2001. He was awarded honorary doctorates from Cambridge University and Columbia University in New York, and honorary degrees from the universities of Cambridge, London and Oxford.