Daljit Nagra

b. 1966

Daljit Nagra was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2017.

Daljit Nagra’s parents came to Britain from the Punjab, India, in the late 1950s. Nagra comes from a Sikh background and was born and grew up in West London then Sheffield. He has published four collections of poetry all with Faber & Faber.

His pamphlet, Oh My Rub! was a Smith/Doorstop winner and was the Poetry Book Society’s first ever Pamphlet Choice in 2003. He was the first poet to win the Forward Prize for both his first collection of poetry, in 2007, and for its title poem, ‘Look, We Have Coming to Dover!’, three years earlier. He also won the South Bank Show Decibel Award and the Cholmondeley Award. In 2014 he won the Society of Authors Travelling Scholarship Award and he has also been shortlisted for a number of other awards. His subsequent two collections, Tippoo Sultan’s Incredible White-Man Eating Tiger-Toy Machine!!! and his version of the Ramayana were nominated for the TS Eliot Prize. In 2014 he was selected as a New Generation Poet by the PBS. In 2015 he won a Royal Society Travelling Scholarship. His most recent collection is British Museum.

He is the inaugural Poet in Residence for Radio 4/4 Extra, and among his other duties, he presents Poetry Extra, a weekly programme on Radio 4 Extra. He is a Senior Lecturer of Creative Writing at Brunel University London. His poem ‘Singh Song!’ was added to the AQA English Literature GCSE love and relationships poetry specification.

He has judged many prizes including The Samuel Johnson Prize, The Costa Prize, the RSL Ondaatje Prize, the David Cohen Prize and the National Poetry Competition. His poems have been published in The New Yorker, Poetry ChicagoLRBTLS and New Statesman. He has written for the Guardian, The Financial Times and he has performed his work in Britain and abroad in Canada, India, Mexico, Slovakia and The Netherlands.

He was made a Fellow of the RSL in 2017 and was appointed Chair in 2021.

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On our 200th birthday we are thrilled to launch RSL 200, a five-year celebration of the best in literature past, present and future. We’re delighted that the first day of these celebrations includes some big birthday announcements: 29 Fellows Raymond A …

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