Allison Pearson
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Allison Pearson

Allison Pearson
Born
Judith Allison Lobbett

(1960-07-22) July 22, 1960 (age 60)
NationalityBritish
EducationMarket Harborough Upper School
Lincoln Christ's Hospital School
Alma materClare College, Cambridge
EmployerThe Daily Telegraph
Simon Pearson
(m. 1988)

Judith Allison Pearson (née Lobbett;[1] born 22 July 1960) is a British columnist and author.[2][3]

Early life

Born in Carmarthen, Wales, Pearson moved to Burry Port, Carmarthenshire.[2] She attended Market Harborough Upper School (now Robert Smyth School), then Lincoln Christ's Hospital School, both comprehensive schools. She studied English at Clare College, Cambridge,[4] graduating with a lower second class degree (2:2).[5]

Career

Journalism

Pearson began her career with the Financial Times, where she was a sub-editor, before moving to The Independent and then The Independent on Sunday in 1992. There she was assistant to Blake Morrison before becoming a TV critic, winning the award for Critic of the Year at the British Press Awards in 1993.

Pearson was a columnist with London's Evening Standard and The Daily Telegraph, then took over from Lynda Lee-Potter at the Daily Mail.

Pearson ended her column for the Daily Mail in April 2010, when it was said that she was to join The Daily Telegraph.[6] In September 2010, Pearson resumed her role as a columnist with The Daily Telegraph.[7] As of 2015, Pearson was a columnist and chief interviewer of The Daily Telegraph.[8]

Pearson has presented Channel 4's J'Accuse and BBC Radio 4's The Copysnatchers, and participated as a panellist on Late Review, the predecessor of Newsnight Review.

Books

Pearson's first novel, I Don't Know How She Does It (2002), is a "chick lit" examination of the pressures of modern motherhood. The book was a bestseller in the UK and the US, selling four million copies, and was made into a film.[2]

Pearson was sued by Miramax for non-delivery of a second novel, I Think I Love You, for which she received a US$700,000 advance in 2003. Delivery was due in 2005:[9] it was published in 2010.[10] The novel was about a teenager's passion for David Cassidy in the 1970s and the man writing the so-called replies from David Cassidy to the teenage fans, who meet up 20 years later after marriage, divorce, and children. Her newspaper, The Telegraph, praised the novel for its warmth and sincerity;[10]The Guardian declared it an "unrealistic and sappy romance".[11]

A sequel to I Don't Know How She Does It was published in September 2017. The novel, How Hard Can It Be,[12] continues the story of the protagonist Kate Reddy, now approaching 50 and struggling with bias against older women in the workplace. The book attracted considerable publicity but failed to become a bestseller.[3]

Controversies

Pearson was listed in Spiked in 2007[13] as one of many journalists who had been duped by the anti-MMR campaign. This anti-MMR campaign has contributed to the significant rise in measles cases and complications including death that arise from the disease[14] in the UK and elsewhere.

Less than an hour after the first of the 22 March 2016 Belgian bombings, Pearson suggested that the attacks were a justification for the Brexit cause in the then-upcoming referendum on Britain's membership of the European Union, writing on Twitter that "Brussels, de facto capital of the EU, is also the jihadist capital of Europe. And the Remainers dare to say we're safer in the EU!". The tweet was widely criticised as "ill-considered" and "shameless". [15][16][17]

Following the May 2017 Manchester Arena bombing, Pearson called for the introduction of internment.[18]

In December 2019, Pearson falsely claimed that a photo of a child lying on the floor of a hospital was staged[19] and that she had been given "detailed explanation" that the photo was staged. She also said that the photo was "100% faked".[20] The trust that runs Leeds General Infirmary issued a statement which apologised to the family that only chairs were available in the treatment room the boy was in and no beds.[] The hospital's chief medical officer also apologised.

Personal life

Pearson was married to fellow journalist Simon Pearson,[1] in May 1988 in Lincoln. She subsequently lived with Anthony Lane,[21] film critic for The New Yorker.

Allison Pearson was declared bankrupt following a personal insolvency order made by the High Court of Justice in London on 9 November 2015. The bankruptcy petitioner was the Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs.[22][23]

Bibliography

Allison Pearson talks about I Think I Love You on Bookbits radio.
  • I Don't Know How She Does It (2002) ISBN 0-7011-7302-5
  • I Think I Love You (2010) ISBN 0-7011-7697-0 and ISBN 978-0-7011-7697-6
  • How Hard Can It Be? (2018) ISBN 978-1250086082

References

  1. ^ a b "none". Private Eye. 27 May 2008.
  2. ^ a b c Rachel Mainwaring (11 March 2011). "Teenage crush inspires new novel on David Cassidy". WalesOnline. Retrieved 2011.
  3. ^ a b Alison Flood (8 April 2015). "Allison Pearson revisits bestselling heroine in middle age". The Guardian.
  4. ^ "Hollywood stardom for novel by Clare alumna". Clare College Alumni Association. 26 January 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  5. ^ The Historical Register of the University of Cambridge, Supplement 1981-1985. Cambridge University Press. p. 354.
  6. ^ Roy Greenslade (19 April 2010). "Telegraph woos Oborne and Pearson to quit the Daily Mail". The Guardian.
  7. ^ Eleanor Black (September 2010). "Women on the verge". Next. p. 32.
  8. ^ "Allison Pearson". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2016.
  9. ^ "Miramax says British columnist failed to deliver book". Reuters. 11 August 2008.
  10. ^ a b Chloe Rhodes (21 June 2010). "I Think I Love You by Allison Pearson: review". The Daily Telegraph.
  11. ^ Carole Cadwalladr (21 March 2018). "I Think I Love You, Book review". The Guardian.
  12. ^ Charlotte Edwardes (14 September 2017). "How Hard Can It Be? by Allison Pearson - review". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 2017.
  13. ^ Michael Fitzpatrick. "The dark art of the MMR-autism scare". Spiked. Retrieved 2019.
  14. ^ Henry Bodkin (25 April 2019). "Measles: Half a million UK children unvaccinated amid fears of 'public health timebomb'". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2019.
  15. ^ Heather Saul (22 March 2016). "Telegraph columnist accused of 'shamelessly' using Brussels attacks to make Brexit argument". The Independent. Retrieved 2017.
  16. ^ Allison Pearson (12 January 2016). "Why the Brexit referendum will be swung by the horrific events in Cologne". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2017.
  17. ^ Allison Pearson (1 March 2016). "Our schools and hospitals simply cannot cope with the influx of migrants - that's why we must leave the EU". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2017.
  18. ^ Chris Ellitt (23 May 2017). "Manchester attack: intern terror suspects, urges Cambridge-based writer". Cambridge News. Retrieved 2017.
  19. ^ Will Taylor (10 December 2019). "'Monstrous' accusation that photo of sick boy on hospital floor was staged refuted". Yahoo! News. Retrieved 2020.
  20. ^ Alex Hern; Kate Proctor (20 December 2019). "'I was hacked,' says woman whose account claimed hospital boy photo was staged". The Guardian. Retrieved 2020.
  21. ^ Will Cohu (14 December 2003). "A writer's life: Anthony Lane". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2007.
  22. ^ Andy McSmith (10 January 2016). "Diary: The ideal figure to bring discipline to unruly Blairites". The Independent. Retrieved 2016.
  23. ^ "Bankruptcy Orders - Pearson, Allison". The London Gazette (61417). 23 November 2015. p. 23080. Retrieved 2016.

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