Kathryn Hulme

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Kathryn Hulme
BornKathryn Cavarly Hulme
(1900-07-06)July 6, 1900
San Francisco, California
DiedAugust 25, 1981(1981-08-25) (aged 81)
Lihue, Kauai, Hawaii
SpouseLeonard D. Geldert (1925–1928)

Kathryn Hulme (January 6, 1900 – August 25, 1981) was an American author and memoirist most noted for her novel The Nun's Story. The book is often misunderstood to be semi-autobiographical.


Her 1956 book The Nun's Story was a best-selling novel which was made into an award-winning 1959 movie starring Audrey Hepburn and Peter Finch.

Another work, The Undiscovered Country: A Spiritual Adventure published by Little, Brown & Co. was a description of her years as a student of mystic G. I. Gurdjieff and her eventual conversion to Catholicism. Hulme studied with Gurdjieff as part of a group of eight women known as "The Rope," which included: Solita Solano, Kathryn Hulme, Alice Rohrer, Elizabeth Gordon, Louise Davidson, Georgette Leblanc, Margaret Caroline Anderson and Jane Heap[1]

She is also the author of The Wild Place, a vivid description of her experiences as the UNRRA Director of the Polish Displaced Persons camp at Wildflecken, Germany, after World War II. This work won the Atlantic Non-Fiction Award in 1952.[2]

It was at Wildflecken that Hulme met a Belgian nurse and former nun Marie Louise Habets, who became her lifelong companion. The Nun's Story is a slightly fictionalized biographical account of Habets' life as a nun.

In her 1938 fictionalized autobiography We Lived as Children, Hulme describes a child's perspective of San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake.


  • Arab Interlude, Macrae Smith Company (Philadelphia), 1930
  • Desert Night, The Macauley Company (New York), 1932
  • We lived as children, A.A. Knopf (New York, London), 1938 (LCCN: 38027542, ASIN: B000GBZZIU)
  • The Wild Place, (Atlantic Prize for Nonfiction (1952), Brown Little, 1953, (ISBN 9787100102407)
  • The Nun's Story, Pocket Books, 1958 (ASIN: B000CBFXYA)
  • The Undiscovered Country: A Spiritual Adventure, Little, Brown & Co. (Boston USA/Toronto CA), 1967; reprinted (Natural Bridge Editions: Lexington MA, 1997) (ISBN 1-891218-03-4)
  • Look A Lion In the Eye: On Safari Through Africa, Little, Brown & Co. First edition (1974) (ISBN 0316381403)
  • Annie's Captain, Little, Brown and Company (Boston, Toronto), 1961

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The Rope Archived 2006-06-16 at the Wayback Machine gurdjieff-legacy.org.
  2. ^ Campbell, Debra (Winter 2008). "[About the Cover]: The Nun's Story: Another Look at the Postwar Religious Revival". American Catholic Studies. 119 (4): 103–108. JSTOR 44195197. Retrieved 10 February 2023.

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