Robert Burns: The Bard
Burns remains Scotland’s best loved poet, both at home and abroad, and in 2009 researchers and writers at the St Andrews School of English celebrated the 250th anniversary of the poet’s birth with a ground-breaking new biography (The Bard: Robert Burns) an edition of Burns’ poems and letters (The Best Laid Schemes), and an anthology of new Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect, by twelve poets, written in response to Burns’ first book.
At the heart of this work, Robert Crawford’s biography reshaped our understanding of Burns’ childhood, established a new understanding of Burns’ politics (‘the master poet of democracy’) and rediscovered ‘lost’ poems in the archives, which were published for the first time in The Bard.
Subsequently, The Bard was featured in several Scottish Government-sponsored events as part of the ‘Homecoming 2009’ scheme promoting the Scottish tourism industry, and Robert spoke and read at the British Embassy in Brussels and at the Library of Congress in Washington with First Minister of Scotland Alex Salmond. Robert also oversaw the National Trust for Scotland’s Lottery-supported redevelopment of the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum in Alloway, Ayshire, advising on the £21M refurbishment and reinterpretation of the most visited NTS property in the country.