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The Charles Wallace Trust

Since 1991, the Charles Wallace India Trust (CWIT) has sponsored an annual Fellowship that enables a writer from India to come and work at the University of Kent for the Spring Term. Hosted by the School of English, the CWIT Fellow is given the time and resources to work on their own creative writing project for up to twelve weeks. Additionally, they have the opportunity to present their work to staff and students in talks organised by Kent’s renowned Centres for Creative Writing and Postcolonial Studies.

Many of our Fellows have been writers at the start of their career who have subsequently gone on to build up significant and influential bodies of work in a wide variety of literary fields. Past CWIT Fellows have included prominent novelists Upamanyu Chatterjee, Manju Kapur, Radhika Jha, Ruchir Joshi, the dramatist Mahesh Dattani, the journalist Radhika Iyengar, and one of the leading contemporary Indian English poets, Sampurna Chattarji.

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While the writing project will form the focus of the Fellowship, we would also encourage Fellows to take advantage of the rich cultural life of the university and to interact with an English department that includes many world-class writers of novels, poetry and literary criticism. The department’s interdisciplinary Centre for Colonial and Postcolonial Studies, founded in 1994, has long been recognised as a centre for excellence in research in postcolonial literatures. Kent was one of the first British universities to introduce the study of modern Indian literatures in English and in translation into the curriculum, and our current research environment includes staff and postgraduate students working on diverse aspects of colonial and contemporary Indian literary production. The Centre for Creative Writing hosts a weekly Creative Writers Series, bringing in writers from around the UK for readings and discussions, offering a wonderful opportunity for Fellows to meet their contemporaries, as well as to contribute a reading of their own work to the series.

*COVID-19 Update: Due to the global COVID-19 crisis, the University of Kent and the Charles Wallace India Trust is offering a virtual Fellowship for Spring term of 2021. The recipient of the Fellowship will be given virtual access to staff, students, and electronic library resources via online platforms hosted by the University of Kent. In lieu of the usual costs of travel and accommodation, the Fellow will instead be provided with a bursary of 2 lakhs INR (approx. £2,000) to allow them to work in India on a project for twelve weeks. The School of English will provide online access to research events hosted by the Centres for Creative Writing and Postcolonial Studies. The Fellow will conduct a presentation of their work to staff and students and will lead an online workshop for Creative Writing students; the School will provide an online platform for both events.

For eligibility the candidate must:
• Be an Indian citizen, domiciled and resident
• Have completed university-level education in the field of literature and/or have between five and seven years of professional experience
• Have a clear proposal stating what they plan to do at the University of Kent and how they hope to use the experience on their return to India
• Have not been given a Charles Wallace India Trust Writing Fellowship grant within the previous five years
Applications for the fellowship must include the following:
• A clear proposal of what the candidate wants to achieve in coming to Kent and how they will use this in their work once they return to India
• Two references from referees who know your work very well
• A sample of your writing (which will not be returned). Prose writers: no more than 2,000 words. Poets: no more than five poems
• A full CV

Applications for the 2021 Fellowship will be accepted from now until 11:59 on Wednesday, September 30th, 2020. The successful candidate will be informed at the beginning of December.

The Fellow will normally be expected to complete their post at the University of Kent during the Spring Term (17th January – 8th April).

Applications or enquiries should be sent via email to english@kent.ac.uk

Postal applications should be sent to: The School of English, Rutherford College Extension, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NX.