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Dawn Foster
Foster on Novara Media in 2017
Foster on Novara Media in 2017
Born Dawn Hayley Foster
(1986-09-12)12 September 1986
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Died July 2021 (aged 34)
London, England
Occupation Writer, broadcaster
Alma mater University of Warwick

Dawn Hayley Foster (12 September 1986 – July 2021) was a British journalist, broadcaster, and author. She was a staff writer for Jacobin magazine. She also contributed to the London Review of Books, Times Literary Supplement, The Independent, The Nation, Tribune, The Guardian, and Dissent in the United States.

Early and personal life

Foster was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland and grew up in Newport, South Wales. In articles for Child Poverty Action Group and The Guardian she wrote that she grew up in poverty in an unemployed family. She attended Caerleon Comprehensive School and Bassaleg High School before going on to study English literature at Warwick University on a scholarship.

Foster was based in South West London. She was a Roman Catholic. Foster suffered from epilepsy and schwannomatosis, and wrote about being disabled.

Foster's friends and colleagues announced her death on 15 July 2021. Foster had been discharged from hospital on 9 July and was found in her home, having died suddenly of complications related to her long-term health problems. Tributes were paid by fellow political commentators and journalists on social media. A number of politicians, including Jeremy Corbyn, Mary Lou McDonald, Angela Rayner, and John McDonnell, expressed their condolences.


Foster's first book, Lean Out, was published in January 2016 by Repeater Books. According to her biography in the London Review of Books, at the time of her death she was working on another book, a cultural history of the dole.

Awards and influence

Foster was awarded the International Building Press Prize for Young Journalist of the Year in 2014, was named Non-traditional Journalist of the Year at the inaugural Words by Women Awards, longlisted for the Orwell Prize for Exposing Britain's Social Evils in 2017, and shortlisted for the Bread and Roses Award 2017.

In September 2017, Foster was listed at Number 82 in "The 100 Most Influential People on the Left" by political commentator Iain Dale.

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