Mary Anne Mohanraj an American writer, editor, and academic of Sri Lankan-Tamil origin, is the author of 'Bodies in Motion', a Sri Lankan-American novel-in-stories published by the noted HarperCollins and ten other titles. She often noted for her frank broodings on the theme of sex and relationship. 'Bodies in Motion' was a finalist for the Asian American Book Awards and has been translated into six languages. It was recently selected for the One Book, One Truman program at Truman College.
Mohanraj was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka. At the early age of two she moved to the United States later spending her childhood in New Britain, Connecticut. She survived death by the sheer mockery of chance when she was 12 years old. Her parents had initially intended to go back to Sri Lanka after a couple of years and when their daughter reached the early stages of adolescence decided to send her to her grandparents to revive the feeling of homeland within her. But in that year of 1983 trouble was brewing all over Sri Lanka. A letter received by Mohanraj's father just before little Mohanraj was about to board her flight home, strictly suggested against her departure. In the days that followed violent riots dubbed "Black July" wrecked the capital city of Colombo. Tamil's were burned and raped everywhere. Mohanraj might never have become what she is today had she left for home that day ending in her deathbed or in refugee settlements in Canada.
But fortunately for Mohanraj, she attended the University of Chicago and graduated with a degree in English Literature in 1993. She holds a Masters in Fine Arts from Mills College (1998) and a Doctorate in English Literature from the University of Utah (2005).
Mohanraj received the Breaking Barriers Award from the Chicago Foundation for Women for Asian American arts organizing in 2009.
She is also recipients of an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Prose, a Neff Fellowship in English, a Steffenson-Canon Fellowship in the Humanities, and the Scowcroft Prize for Fiction. Mohanraj is a Clinical Assistant Professor of fiction of Asian American literature and post-colonial literature at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and Executive Director of the Speculative Literature Foundation. She is the Executive Director of both DesiLit, an arts organization supporting S.
Asian and diaspora literature, and the SLF, an arts organization supporting speculative fiction. She is also the founder of 'Strange Horizons', a weekly online magazine of science fiction, fantasy, science fact, opinion, art, and reviews.