Robert Crawford is Professor in the School of English at the University of St Andrews, and one of Scotland's most distinguished poet-critics. He was one of the 'New Generation' poets in 1994, a group which has proved to include some of the best poets of that generation of Scottish writers who have come to maturity in the post-devolution era.
Robert Crawford was born in Belshill, Lanarkshire, and studied at the universities of Glasgow and Oxford, where W. N. Herbert was a fellow student - Sharawaggi, their joint book of poems in Scots, was published by Polygon in 1990. A prolific writer both of poetry and literary criticism, his literary history, Scotland's Books (2007) won the Saltire Scottish Research Book of the Year Award and his biography of Robert Burns, The Bard (2009) won the overall Saltire Scottish Book of the Year Award. His book The Beginning and the End of the World: St Andrews, Scandal, and the Birth of Photography was published in 2011, as was his collaboration with photographer Norman McBeath, Simonides. His most recent prose books are Bannockburns: Scottish Independence and Literary Imagination 1314-2014 (Edinburgh University Press, 2014) and the biography Young Eliot: From St Louis to 'The Waste Land' (Cape and Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2015).
His collections of poetry include A Scottish Assembly (Chatto, 1990), Spirit Machines (Cape, 1999), The Tip of My Tongue (Cape, 2003), Selected Poems (Cape, 2005), Full Volume (Cape, 2008), which was shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot Prize, and most recently Testament (Cape, 2014). Four of his collections have been Poetry Book Society Recommendations and he has won two Scottish Arts Council Book Awards. With Simon Armitage he edited The Penguin Book of Poetry from Britain and Ireland since 1945 (1998) and with Mick Imlah The New Penguin Book of Scottish Verse (2000). A founding editor of the magazine Verse, he has served as a judge for the T. S. Eliot Prize, the National Poetry Competition, and other awards.