Frame, Janet (Janet Paterson Frame Clutha)klōˈthə, 1924–2004, New Zealand novelist, b. Dunedin. Frame's complex, disturbing novels are marked by startling images and masterful language. Often drawn from her own years of institutionalization in psychiatric hospitals and her rescue from a scheduled lobotomy (after a misdiagnosis of schizophrenia), they depict disturbed and often visionary people living on the edge of madness or death. These themes are especially vivid in her first published work, a book of short stories entitled The Lagoon (1951), and her first two novels, Owls Do Cry (1957) and Faces in the Water (1961). Frame's other works include a volume of poems, The Pocket Mirror (1967); the short-story collection The Reservoir and Other Stories (1966); and a children's book. In all, Frame wrote a total of 12 novels, including The Rainbirds (1968), Intensive Care (1970), Daughter Buffalo (1972), Living in the Maniototo (1979), The Carpathians (1988), and a 1963 work, Towards Another Summer, which was not published until 2007.
See her autobiographical trilogy, To the Is-land (1982), An Angel at My Table (1984), and The Envoy from Mirror City (1985); M. King, Wrestling with the Angel: A Life of Janet Frame (2000) and An Inward Sun: The World of Janet Frame (2002); studies by P. Evans (1977), J. Delbaere, ed. (1992), J. D. Panny (1993, rev. ed. 2002), G. Mercer (1994), M. Delrez (2002), S. Oettli-van Delden (2003), and M. Wikse (2006); biographical film, An Angel at My Table (1990), dir. by J. Campion.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
More on Janet Frame from Fact Monster:
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Australian and New Zealand Literature: Biographies