Writer and Film Director. Born in southern Vietnam. Marguerite lost her father at age 4. The family savings of 20 years bought the family a small plot in Cambodia, but everything was lost in a single season's flooding. The disaster destroyed her mother and she soon died as a result. The difficult life that the family experienced during this period was highly influential on Marguerite's later work. An affair between the teenaged Marguerite and Huynh Thuy Le, a rich Sa Dec merchant, was to be treated several times in her subsequent memoirs and fiction. After high school in Saigon, Marguerite left Indochina to study law in Paris. As a young woman, she worked as a secretary in France's Ministry of Colonies from 1935 to 1941. Her husband, Robert Antelme, was deported to Buchenwald for his involvement in the Resistance, and barely survived the experience. In 1943, for her first novel published Les Impudents, she decided to use as pen name the surname of Duras, a village in the Lot-et-Garonne département, where her father's house was located. She was the author of many novels, plays, films, interviews, essays and short fiction, including her best-selling, apparently autobiographical work L'Amant in 1984, translated into English as The Lover, which describes her youthful affair with a Chinese man. This text won the Goncourt prize in 1984. The story of her adolescence also appears in three other forms: The Sea Wall, Eden Cinema and The North China Lover. A film version of The Lover, produced by Claude Berri and directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud, was released to great success in 1992. The Sea Wall was first adapted into the 1958 film This Angry Age by René Clément, and again in 2008 by Cambodian director Rithy Panh as The Sea Wall. Other major works include Moderato Cantabile, also made into a film of the same name, Le Ravissement de Lol V. Stein, and her play India Song, which Duras herself later directed as a film, also titled India Song in 1975, she won France's Cinema Academy Grand Prix for this. She was also the screenwriter of the 1959 French film Hiroshima mon amour, which was directed by Alain Resnais. She wrote 34 novels from 1943 to 1993, and became an enduring part of Paris's intellectual elite. She died at the age of 81, in Paris, France.
Bio by: Shock
1917–1990 (m. 1939)