Benjamin Zephaniah, the well-known British poet and author, died at the age of 65. Eight weeks ago, he disclosed on Instagram that he had received a brain tumor diagnosis. He was praised in the article as a “true pioneer and innovator” who profoundly enhanced the globe and left an enduring legacy.

According to the testimony, Benjamin’s wife comforted him as he departed, staying faithfully by his side until the very end. 

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His extraordinary career encompassed a wide range of artistic mediums, including radio, television, literature, music, and an enormous collection of poems. Benjamin Zephaniah, who is known for five novels and fourteen poetry collections, left a vibrant and enduring legacy. 

His portrayal as Jeremiah Jesus in Peaky Blinders and his work as a dub poet further contributed to the depth of his creative output.

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Who was Benjamin Zephaniah?

Benjamin Zephaniah, who was born in Handsworth, Birmingham, England, on April 15, 1958, became well-known in the literary and cultural spheres as a dub poet and writer. His first venture into the literary world started when he joined a workers’ cooperative in Stratford, London, and it ended with the release of his first poetry collection, “Pen Rhythm,” in 1980. Zephaniah won praise for his powerful poetry that explored issues of identity, social justice, and race.

He launched a successful literary career by publishing a large number of plays, poetry collections, novels, and children’s books, all of which demonstrated his flexibility. Three of his works stand out in particular: “Dread Time” (1983), “City Psalms” (1992), and “Refugee Boy” (1997). All three were praised for their brilliance and became well-known. 

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Zephaniah won numerous honors for his literary achievements, such as the NESTA Fellowship and the Grierson Award. Regarded as one of the most important and influential writers in Britain, he was included in The Times’ 2008 list of the country’s top 50 post-war writers.