Living By The Pen: In Conversation with Sunjeev Sahota

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Abstract

Sunjeev Sahota is one of the leading lights of contemporary British literature. Although he writes in a familiar form, the content of his work is anything but ordinary. From social dislocation in contemporary India, to the hidden labour behind Sheffield takeaways, to the radicalized generation responding to twenty-first-century British society, his novels tackle some of the most pressing social and political concerns of our times. The stories are set in Northern England, but the themes of his two best-selling novels and the lifestyle of their author are profoundly global. Sahota splits his time between a home in Sheffield, family in India, and an international diary of literary work. In the last twelve months alone, Sahota joined Leeds Beckett University as the first University Writer in Residence, took part in a British Council trip to promote contemporary British literature in Russia, and scooped the EU Prize for Literature in the immediate aftermath of Brexit. Before this whirlwind of success, and a variety of concurrent social and political changes in the UK and overseas, Sunjeev Sahota agreed to an interview for English. The interview that follows reflects on many of the events that occurred in the twelve months leading up to the day we conducted our interview, in person, at Mrs Atha’s coffee shop in Leeds, UK on the eve of the 2017 UK General Election.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-271
JournalEnglish
Volume56
Issue number254
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2017

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