In the Light of What We Know (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2014) was published to international critical acclaim and won the prestigious James Tait Black Memorial Prize, Britain’s oldest literary prize, previous winners of which include Evelyn Waugh, Nadine Gordimer, Salman Rushdie and Cormac McCarthy. The novel won the inaugural Ranald MacDonald International Arts Prize and was shortlisted or long-listed for many other prizes. It was included in numerous end-of-year lists of best books and has been translated into many languages.
Appointed to a 2017 Radcliffe Fellowship at Harvard University, and to a 2018 Director’s Visitorship at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, Zia Haider Rahman is an Eric and Wendy Schmidt Fellow at New America, Washington, D.C.; a Senior Fellow at the Bruno Kreisky Forum, Vienna; and a Visiting Professor in the low residency MFA program in Fiction and Non-Fiction at Southern New Hampshire University. He has held the Michael & Nina Sundell and the James Silberman & Selma Shapiro Fellowships at Yaddo. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, and elsewhere.
Born in rural Bangladesh, he grew up in London, first in a squat, then on a council estate (social housing), and was educated at Balliol College, Oxford University, and at Cambridge, Munich and Yale universities.