Christopher Isherwood

Facts about Christopher Isherwood

Christopher Isherwood died at 81 years old
Born: August 26, 1904
Died: January 4, 1986
Best known as: The author of 'Goodbye to Berlin,' which became 'Cabaret'

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Christopher Isherwood Biography

Christopher Isherwood was a British expatriate whose experiences in Germany in the 1930s were the basis of the novel Goodbye to Berlin (1939), which was made into the musical Cabaret.

Isherwood began his writing career while living in Berlin just before the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi party. His first novel, Mr. Norris Changes Trains, was published in 1935. Around the same time, he collaborated on plays with his former schoolmate, W.H. Auden, including The Dog Beneath the Skin (1935) and On the Frontier (1938).

Christopher Isherwood fled Nazi Germany and moved to California in 1939. He and Auden toured China just prior to that, and together they published the book Journey to War (1939).

Back in California, Isherwood joined the Vedanta Society and began a lifelong relationship with Hinduism and Swami Prabhavananda. Together they published a 1944 translation of the Bhagavad Gita.

Isherwood wrote for the big screen, but he was best known for his play I Am a Camera (1952) and autobiographical novels that explored themes of homosexuality and alienation, including A Single Man (1964), A Meeting by the River (1967) and Christopher and His Kind (1976).


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