John Carey was born in 1934 in Barnes, South West London. He attended West Bridgford Grammar School and Richmond and East Sheen County Grammar School for Boys before he won the William Lambe Open Scholarship at St John’s College, Oxford which he attended in 1954, after completing his National Service.
Carey graduated with first class honours in English in 1957 and went on to do a D.Phil. He was Fellow and Tutor in English at Keble College, Oxford until 1964 before he was invited back to St John’s as Fellow and Tutor where he remained until 1975 when he was elected Merton Professor of English Literature.
He wrote poetry for the London Magazine and the New Statesmen as well as radio, book and TV reviews for the Listener. Carey started writing book reviews for The Sunday Times in 1975, and still does to this day.
He has lectured in India, Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Israel and America, as well as various European countries. Carey retired from the Merton Chair in 2002 and is now an Emeritus professor. He is also an Honorary Professor of Liverpool University, a Fellow of the British Academy and of the Royal Society of Literature, and an Honorary Fellow of Balliol and St John’s Colleges.
He is the author of Pure Pleasure: A Guide to the Twentieth Century’s Most Enjoyable Books, amongst others.
He was also the Chair of the first ever Man Booker International Prize in 2004-05.
Image Credit - Matt Writtle (http://www.johncarey.org/About.html)