Michiko Kakutani



Michiko Kakutani born in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1955. The daughter of a Yale  wasmathematician and herself a Yale graduate, Kakutani worked as a reporter before becoming a book critic at the Times in 1983. Since then she has made a reputation for herself as a fearsome reviewer, one who is unafraid to take on the famous and distinguished, as she did recently in a scathing review of an Ann Beattie novel, which Kakutani described as a "pretentious...narcissistic, self-indulgent, hot-air-filled tome that wastes the reader's time with silly creative-writing-class exercises.
Many writers whose work has been the subject of Kakutani's stricture, have had a few words to say about her, including Salman Rushdie who called her "a weird woman who seems to feel the need to alternately praise and spank." Susan Sontag said, "Her criticisms of my books are stupid and shallow and not to the point," and Jonathan Franzen called Kakutani "the stupidest person in New York City."
The Pulitzer Prize committee disagrees, having given Kakutani the award for criticism in 1998.