Patience Agbabi (1983) elected to Honorary Fellowship at Pembroke College


We are delighted to announce that Patience Agbabi (1983) has been elected to an Honorary Fellowship in recognition of her distinguished writing career.

Patience is a renowned poet, novelist and Fellow in Creative Writing at Oxford Brookes University, and is currently Associate Member of the English Faculty at the University of Oxford. Since graduating from Pembroke in 1986, Patience has published a range of award-winning poetry collections; most notably, she was given an Arts Council grant to produce Telling Tales (2014), a modern reimagining of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales.

More recently, her career has shifted towards prose, with the release of her debut novel The Infinite in 2020. This has since become the first book in The Leap Cycle, a series of time-travel adventure novels targeted towards readers aged 8-12. The Past Master, the fourth book in the series, was published in February of this year. Patience has been shortlisted for and won a variety of awards for both her poetry and prose, and continues to be a celebrated spoken-word performer.

“Studying English at Pembroke broadened and deepened my interest in literature and gave me a brilliant foundation for writing poetry and novels,” Patience told us on receiving the fellowship. “I especially enjoyed engaging with pre-19th century works and as a direct result of borrowing audiocassettes from the English Faculty Library, have championed literature aloud for decades. Therefore, it feels wonderfully cyclical to be the recipient of a fellowship that recognises my own contribution to performance and literature inspired by the past and present. I’m delighted to accept this Honorary Fellowship.”

A headshot of Patience Agbabi.