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Raman Mundair

Raman Mundair was born in Ludhiana, India and came to live in the UK at the age of five. She spent her early years in Manchester and her teenage years in Loughborough. She was educated at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London and has appeared at numerous diverse venues in the UK and abroad. Raman's work has been widely anthologized and received excellent reviews in publications including The Independent, The Herald, World Literature Today and Discovering Scottish Literature. She is the author of two volumes of poetry, 'A Choreographer's Cartography' and 'Lovers, Liars, Conjurers and Thieves' – both published by Peepal Tree Press and 'The Algebra of Freedom' (a play) published by Aurora Metro Press. Her collection of short stories 'In the Light of Other' will be published in 2009. Raman has been nominated for the prestigious Rolex Mentor and Protégé Award 2008. In 2007 Raman was awarded a Robert Louis Stevenson Award and in 2006 she was runner up in the Penguin Decibel Prize for Short Fiction. She has also been awarded the prestigious Arts Council England International Fellowship at the India International Centre in Delhi and several Scottish Arts Council Fellowships. In 2008 she was a Scottish Poetry Library Poet Partner for East Dumbarton and a Robert Louis Stevenson Fellow at the Hotel Chevillon in Grez-sur-Loing, France.

As a playwright Raman was awarded a mentorship with the Playwrights Studio Scotland in 2005. In 2007 her play 'The Algebra of Freedom' was produced to great acclaim by 7:84 Theatre Company. In 2006 she collaborated with the National Theatre Scotland and Òran Mòr - A Play, A Pie, A Pint on 'Side Effects', a one-act play, which went on to tour Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dublin. Raman is one of the 24 writers chosen by the Royal Court Theatre and the BBC in 2008 for their 24 Degrees project which nurtures and develops work by the 'next generation of promising new writers in Britain, ' and is currently on attachment to the Royal Court and the BBC.

Raman has worked extensively for The British Council, delivering her work in a range of venues from university lecture theatres to street cafes, in countries including Namibia, Bahrain, Italy and Sweden. She has undertaken various writing residencies including being a British Council Visiting Writer in Residence for Stockholm University and residencies in New Delhi, Glasgow and the Shetland Islands. She has been awarded several fellowships including and Arts Council England Visiting Fellowship, India International Centre, 2007, Scottish Arts Council Writing Fellow, Glasgow, 2004-2007, Visiting Artist, Flax Arts Studio, Belfast, 2004 and the inaugral Scottish Arts Council Writer in Residence for the Shetland Islands, 2003. She is a sought after facilitator of creative and education workshops and her client list ranges from schools and universities to the British Council and Amnesty International.

"Raman Mundair [is a] daring and worldly writer who flits across genres and forms like they were dancefloor tiles… She has staked her claim to Scotland's heart, a heart as tender and troubled as her poetry, prose and playwriting. In her stunning, sensual and subtle collection, Lover's Liars, Conjurers and Thieves, Mundair dances with words, dares and double dares, ram raids the reader's heart, then does a runner. Later, her lines return like lost lambs in the night, but with the cry of wolves not far behind. A shape-shifter, voice thrower and stealer of breath, she shows that even in a place as cold as this northern outpost language can bubble and brim over."

Discovering Scottish Literature - A Contemporary Overview, 2008

"Raman Mundair is a rare breed: a poet whose writing works on the page and the stage. Her readings reveal the secret music of the poem… Mundair is literature at its best: thoughtful, provocative and sharp."

The Independent

'...Last night a poet saved my life
made love flirting with my ears
sound arousing my sense of taste
I mouth words
my fingertips caressing the page...'
 
from 'Lovers, Liars, Conjurers and Thieves' published by Peepal Tree Press, 2003

Racism

Racism
A silent storm that stalks
And will rain down and drench everyone

Racism
A steel stone that sits
In cold, closed hearts

Racism
A long, heavy history
Of death and tears throughout the years

Racism
A manic monster that snarls
And mouths off might

Racism
A vicious rumor that spreads
And deafens all ears

Racism
A sweat drenched nightmare
On a sticky, summers night

Racism
A cancer that chews
Through communities

Racism
A brazen bully who beats
Up kids in the school yard

Racism
The quiet, respected lady
Who lives down your street

Racism
A feeling that makes you feel
You can never let down your guard

Racism
A cut that bleeds
And bleeds and bleeds