First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced the appointment of poet and essayist, Kathleen Jamie as the new Makar – National Poet for Scotland – on 18 August 2021, at the Scottish Poetry Library. Kathleen was appointed for a three year term on the recommendation of a selection panel representing Scotland’s literary sector.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:
Poetry is integral to Scotland’s culture and history. The Makar has a central role in celebrating that legacy, and preserving its future by encouraging the next generation of young writers to leave their mark.
Kathleen is a highly accomplished poet who is known for her works in English and Scots, and the meaningful connections her writing draws between our lives and the landscape around us. I have no doubt she will continue to build on the exceptional work of her predecessors to promote Scottish poetry both here and abroad.
Kathleen Jamie is the fourth person to hold the role since it was established by the Scottish Parliament in 2004, and follows in the footsteps of Jackie Kay, Liz Lochhead, and Edwin Morgan. She said:
I am honoured and delighted to be appointed as Scotland’s new Makar. The post confirms a weel-kent truth: that poetry abides at the heart of Scottish culture, in all our languages, old and new. It’s mysterious, undefinable and bold. It runs deep and sparkles at once.
The role of Makar involves promoting poetry nationally, as well as producing work relating to significant national events.
You can follow the Makar on Twitter @KathleenJamie