Paul-Eerik Rummo

Former Estonian Minister of Culture and Education

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Paul-Eerik Rummo, born in 1942, is a leading Estonian poet, intellectual and politician. The son of writer Paul Rummo, after attending high school he was educated at Tartu University In Tallinn, where he studied Estonian language and literature and graduated in 1965.

He started writing poetry very early, already in college, and published his first collections of poems Ankruhiivaja (Anchor Heaver) in 1962. During the 1960s he published two other collection of poems, which helped him gain notoriety as one of the most innovative voices of Estonian literature of the decade.

In the late 1970s he started working for the state on cultural promotion, and was director of Estonian State Drama Theatre in Tallinn between 1979 and 1986, and a year later was elected Head of the Writers Union. Independence and freedom from the Soviet yoke prompted Rummo to become more involved in Politics: in 1990-1992 he was cultural consultant at the State Chancellery, and in 1992 was made Minister of Culture in Mart Laar’ cabinet. Afterwards he was elected to Parliament in 1994 and would retain a seat in the Riikikogu for the next 10 years. In 2003 he returned to government as minister of Population Affairs.