1972 in literature
This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1972.
- May 22 – Cecil Day-Lewis, Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom, dies at Lemmons, the home of novelists Kingsley Amis and Elizabeth Jane Howard in North London, which he has shared with his wife and son – actors Jill Balcon and Daniel Day-Lewis – and at weekends with Kingsley's writer son Martin Amis and others.
- June 4 – The poet Joseph Brodsky is expelled from the Soviet Union.
- October 6–7 – The new Staatstheater Darmstadt is opened.
- October 8 – The play Sizwe Bansi is Dead has its first performance at the Space Theatre (Cape Town), South Africa, before a multiracial audience. Playwright Athol Fugard directs, with co-writers John Kani and Winston Ntshona in lead roles.
- October 10 – Sir John Betjeman is declared Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom, the first knight ever to be so.
- "The three Marias", Maria Isabel Barreno, Maria Teresa Horta and Maria Velho da Costa, publish in Lisbon New Portuguese Letters (Novas Cartas Portuguesas), a collection challenging the Estado Novo dictatorship, to immediate success, but banned by censors as "pornographic and an offense to public morals". Its authors are imprisoned for "abuse of freedom of the press" and "outrage to public decency". Only after the 1974 "Carnation Revolution" does their trial end with the authors pardoned and the judge assigning "outstanding literary merit" to the book.
- The Somali Latin alphabet is introduced.
- Dritëro Agolli – The Rise and Fall of Comrade Zylo (Shkëlqimi dhe Rënja e Shokut Zylo, published in the magazine Hosteni)
- Srikrishna Alanahalli – Kaadu
- Jorge Amado – Teresa Batista Cansada da Guerra (Tereza Batista: Home from the Wars)
- Martin Amis – The Rachel Papers
- Isaac Asimov – The Gods Themselves
- John Braine – The Queen of a Distant Country
- Taylor Caldwell – Captains and the Kings
- Italo Calvino – Invisible Cities (Le città invisibili)
- John Dickson Carr – The Hungry Goblin: A Victorian Detective Novel
- Angela Carter – The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman
- Agatha Christie – Elephants Can Remember
- Brian Cleeve – Tread Softly in this Place
- Michael Crichton – The Terminal Man
- Robertson Davies – The Manticore
- L. Sprague de Camp and Catherine Crook de Camp, editors – 3000 Years of Fantasy and Science Fiction
- R. F. Delderfield – To Serve Them All My Days
- Frederick Forsyth – The Odessa File
- Günter Grass – Aus dem Tagebuch einer Schnecke (From the Diary of a Snail)
- Graham Greene – The Honorary Consul
- Peter Handke – A Sorrow Beyond Dreams (Wunschloses Unglück)
- James Herriot – All Creatures Great and Small
- Georgette Heyer – Lady of Quality
- George V. Higgins – The Friends of Eddie Coyle
- P. D. James – An Unsuitable Job for a Woman
- Dan Jenkins – Semi-Tough
- Thomas Keneally – The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith
- Carl Jacobi – Disclosures in Scarlet
- Derek Lambert
- Halldór Laxness – Guðsgjafaþula (Mantra of God's Gift)
- Ira Levin – The Stepford Wives
- Audrey Erskine Lindop – Journey Into Stone
- Frank Belknap Long – The Rim of the Unknown
- Robert Ludlum – The Osterman Weekend
- David McCullough – The Great Bridge
- John D. MacDonald – The Scarlet Ruse
- Barry N. Malzberg – Beyond Apollo
- Vladimir Nabokov – Transparent Things
- Kenzaburō Ōe (大江 健三郎) – The Day He Himself Shall Wipe My Tears Away (みずから我が涙をぬぐいたまう日, Mizukara Waga Namida o Nugui Tamau Hi)
- Chaim Potok – My Name Is Asher Lev
- Josef Škvorecký – The Miracle Game (Mirákl)
- David Storey – Pasmore
- Arkady and Boris Strugatsky – Roadside Picnic («Пикник на обочине», Piknik na obochine)
- Paul Theroux – Saint Jack
- Hunter S. Thompson – Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
- Irving Wallace – The Word
Children and young peopleEdit
- Richard Adams – Watership Down
- Gillian Avery – A Likely Lad
- Roald Dahl – Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator
- Rumer Godden
- The Diddakoi (also Gypsy Girl)
- The Old Woman Who Lived in a Vinegar Bottle
- Robert E. Howard (with Alicia Austin) – Echoes from an Iron Harp
- Tove Jansson – The Summer Book
- Michael de Larrabeiti – The Redwater Raid
- Ronald McCuaig – Gangles
- James Marshall – George and Martha (first in a series of seven eponymous books)
- Graham Oakley – The Church Mouse (first in the Church Mice series of twelve books)
- Bill Peet
- The Ant and the Elephant
- Countdown to Christmas
- Mary Renault – The Persian Boy
- Marjorie W. Sharmat – Nate the Great
- Judith Viorst – Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
- Alan Ayckbourn – Absurd Person Singular
- Samuel Beckett – Not I
- Hanay Geiogamah – Body Indian
- Eugène Ionesco – Macbett
- Vijay Tendulkar
- The American Museum of Natural History – An Introduction
- Jacob Bronowski – The Ascent of Man
- L. Sprague de Camp
- Carlos Castaneda – Journey to Ixtlan: The Lessons of Don Juan
- Winston Graham – The Spanish Armadas
- Bruce Joyce and Marsha Weil – Models of Teaching (first edition)
- Michael Kammen – People of Paradox: An Inquiry Concerning the Origins of American Civilization
- Richard Mabey – Food for Free
- Elaine Morgan – The Descent of Woman
- Robert Newton Peck – A Day No Pigs Would Die
- Frances Yates – The Rosicrucian Enlightenment
- John Howard Yoder – The Politics of Jesus
- January 1 – Maile Meloy, American novelist and short story writer
- February 11 – Noboru Yamaguchi (山口 登), Japanese light novelist and game scenario author
- May 27 – Maggie O'Farrell, Northern Ireland-born novelist
- August 18 – Adda Djørup, Danish poet and fiction writer
- September 6 – China Miéville, English science fiction novelist
- September 19
- November 4 – Yiyun Li (李翊雲), Chinese American writer of fiction in English
- January 1 – Eberhard Wolfgang Möller, German playwright and poet (born 1906)
- January 7 – John Berryman, American poet (suicide, born 1914)
- February 2 – Natalie Clifford Barney, American writer and patron (born 1876)
- February 15 – Edgar Snow, American political writer (cancer, born 1905)
- March 4 – Richard Church, English poet and novelist (born 1893
- March 9 – Violet Trefusis, English writer (born 1894)
- March 11 – Fredric Brown, American genre novelist (born 1906
- March 14 – Giangiacomo Feltrinelli, Italian publisher (born 1926)
- April 10 – Laurence Manning, Canadian science fiction author (born 1899)
- May 22 – Cecil Day-Lewis, Irish-born Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom and (as Nicholas Blake) novelist (born 1904)
- June 24 – R. F. Delderfield, English novelist and playwright (born 1912)
- August 2 – Helen Hoyt (Helen Lyman), American poet (born 1887)
- August 17 – Alexander Vampilov, Russian dramatist (drowned fishing, born 1937)
- August 22 – Ernestine Hill, Australian travel writer (born 1899)
- September 21 – Henry de Montherlant, French novelist, dramatist and essayist (suicide, born 1895)
- September 27 – S. R. Ranganathan, Indian mathematician and librarian (born 1892)
- November 1 – Ezra Pound, American poet (born 1885)
- November 29 – Victor Bridges (Victor George de Freyne), English genre novelist, playwright and poet (born 1878)
- December 10 – Mark Van Doren, American poet, writer and critic (born 1894)
- December 13 – L. P. Hartley, English novelist (born 1895)
- December 23 – Abraham Joshua Heschel, Polish-born American theologian and rabbi (born 1907)
- See 1972 Governor General's Awards for a complete list of winners and finalists for those awards.
- Prix Goncourt: Jean Carrière, L'Epervier de Maheux
- Prix Médicis French: Maurice Clavel, Le Tiers des étoiles
- Booker Prize: John Berger, G.
- Carnegie Medal for children's literature: Richard Adams, Watership Down
- Cholmondeley Award: Molly Holden, Tom Raworth, Patricia Whittaker
- Eric Gregory Award: Tony Curtis, Richard Berengarten, Brian Oxley, Andrew Greig, Robin Lee, Paul Muldoon
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction: John Berger, G
- James Tait Black Memorial Prize for biography: Quentin Bell, Virginia Woolf
- American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal for the novel, Eudora Welty
- Hugo Award: Philip José Farmer, To Your Scattered Bodies Go (1971)
- Nebula Award: Isaac Asimov, The Gods Themselves
- Newbery Medal for children's literature: Robert C. O'Brien, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH
- Pulitzer Prize for Drama: Not awarded
- Pulitzer Prize for Fiction: Wallace Stegner – Angle of Repose
- Pulitzer Prize for Poetry: James Wright, Collected Poems
- Kelbie, Paul; Davies, Caroline (2008-08-31). "Auden, Kerr, Day-Lewis". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2015-09-30.
- Obituary pp. 4–6 The New York Times "Joseph Brodsky, Exiled Poet Who Won Nobel, Dies at 55" January 29, 1996.
- "From the archive, 11 October 1972: Betjeman won't let Poet Laureate role change him". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2012-12-05.
- Kauffman, Linda S. (1988). "8. Poetics, Passion and Politics in The Three Marias: New Portuguese Letters". Discourses of Desire: Gender, Genre, and Epistolary Fictions. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. pp. 279–311. ISBN 9780801495106. Retrieved 2019-07-18.
- Patrick, Oona; Ellis, Dean; Fernandes, Jose (translator) (2014-04-15). "Maria Teresa Horta: The Third Maria". Guernica. Retrieved 2019-07-18.
- Kramer, Jane (1975-02-02). "The Three Marias". The New York Times. Retrieved 2019-07-18.
- "The Case of The Three Marias". Time. 102 (4). US. 1973-07-23. p. 52. ISSN 0040-781X. Retrieved 2019-06-30.
- "Three Women Charged With Pornography". Democrat and Chronicle. Rochester, NY. 1973-10-26. p. C1. Retrieved 2019-07-18.
- Hamilton-Faria, Hope (December 1975). "Reviewed Works". The Modern Language Journal. Wiley for National Federation of Modern Language Teachers Associations. 59 (8): 451–452. doi:10.2307/325498. JSTOR 325498.
- Mitchell, Juliet (1975-10-05). "Passion's prisoners". The Sunday Times (7947). London. p. 39.
- Google Books. Retrieved 2015-02-22.
- Hahn, Daniel (2015). The Oxford Companion to Children's Literature (2nd ed.). Oxford. University Press. p. 2. ISBN 9780198715542.
- "Richard (Thomas) Church". Author and Book Info. Retrieved 2014-06-15.
- Society of Authors: Eric Gregory past winners Archived 2014-07-26 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 2015-02-22.
- "Libros". Casa del Libro. Retrieved 2015-09-30.