Acclaimed American writer and journalist Joan Didion died on Thursday in her home in Manhattan, New York. She was 87.
She had been suffering complications from Parkinson’s disease, said Paul Bogaards, a publicity executive at AA Knopf, in a statement according to CNN.
Didion was born in California’s Sacramento city in 1934. She studied at the University of California, Berkeley. In 1956, Didion started her career as a journalist with the Vogue magazine.
She was an important member of the New Journalism movement in the 1960s and 70s alongside writers like Tom Wolfe and Truman Capote, CNN reported.
Writers of this decade gave importance to gathering facts through research, interviews and observations. The final article did not have a traditional journalistic story structure, but instead comprised well-developed characters, sustained dialogue and strong plotlines.
Didion’s articles in Life magazine and other publications captured the “unrest of American life in the postwar era”, according to CNN. She also authored multiple volumes of essays, nonfiction books, memoirs, novels and screenplays.
Her novels include Play It as It Lays (1970), which is a commentary on Hollywood culture, the BBC reported. She also wrote the screenplay to the 1976 musical romantic film A Star is Born.
In 2005, her account of losing her husband John Gregory Dunne, The Year of Magical Thinking, won the Pulitzer Prize. It was adapted for Broadway two years later.
Former United States President Barack Obama gave the National Medal of Arts to her in 2013.
Obama had then described her as “one of the most celebrated American writers of her generation” and “one of our sharpest and most respected observers of American politics and culture”.
Several writers, actors and other social media users paid their tributes to Didion.