Iris Leal was born at Kibbutz Ashdot Yaakov,
Israel, in 1959, and grew up in her grandparents` ultra-Orthodox home. She subsequently lived on Kibbutz Kefar Menachem until 1980, when she left for Paris. Leal later studied social work and cinema in London, returning to Tel Aviv in 1991. She now teaches creative writing at the Camera Obscura School of Art, translates poetry and writes literary reviews for the national dailies, Haaretz and Maariv. Leal has been awarded the Prime Minister`s Prize (1994) and the Bernstein Prize for Literary Criticism (1995).