Launched in Cardiff, London and New York in Spring 2006, The Library of Wales is a Welsh Government project designed to ensure that all of the rich and extensive literature in Wales that has been written in English will now be made available to readers in and beyond Wales. Sustaining this wider literary heritage is understood by the Welsh Government to be a key component in creating and disseminating an ongoing sense of modern Welsh culture and history for the future Wales which is now emerging from contemporary society. Through these texts, until now unavailable or out-of-print or merely forgotten, the Library of Wales will bring back into play the voices and actions of the human experience that has made us, in all our complexity, a Welsh people.
The Library of Wales will include prose as well as poetry, essays as well as fiction, anthologies as well as memoirs, drama as well as journalism. It will complement the names and texts that are already in the public domain and seek to include the best of Welsh writing in English, as well as to showcase what has been unjustly neglected. No boundaries will limit the ambition of the Library of Wales to open up the borders that have denied some of our best writers a presence in a future Wales. The Library of Wales has been created with that Wales in mind: a young country not afraid to remember what it might yet become.
Dai Smith is the series editor of the Library of Wales and Professor in the Cultural History of Wales at Swansea University. Having studied History at Balliol College, Oxford, and Literature at Columbia University, New York City, he was awarded a PhD at Swansea University for a thesis on the South Wales Miners' Federation, which subsequently became the subject of his book, with Hywel Francis, The Fed. He has written extensively about modern Wales, including Aneurin Bevan and the World of South Wales (1993) and Wales: A Question for History (1998). The latter was an extensively revised version of the book associated with six documentary films he wrote and presented under the title Wales! Wales?
He became Editor of BBC Radio Wales in 1993 and was Head of Broadcast (English) there from 1994 until 2000 when he was appointed Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Glamorgan. His critically acclaimed biography of Raymond Williams was published in 2008 as Raymond Williams: A Warrior's Tale. He is currently the chair of the Arts Council of Wales.
We welcome your comments and feedback on the Library of Wales series of books. Please use this simple form to send us your views