Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832) was a Scottish novelist, poet, playwright, and historian who also worked as a judge and legal administrator. Scott's extensive knowledge of history and his exemplary literary technique earned him a role as a prominent author of the romantic movement and innovator of the historical fiction genre. After rising to fame as a poet, Scott started to venture into prose fiction as well, which solidified his place as a popular and widely-read literary figure, especially in the 19th century. Scott left behind a legacy of innovation, and is praised for his contributions to Scottish culture.
Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain (1880-1932) was a Bengali writer, feminist, educator, and activist. Born in Rangpur, modern-day Bangladesh, Rokeya was raised in a family of intellectuals and government figures. Interested in literature from a young age, she was encouraged by her older sister Karimunnesa, a poet and social worker, to expand her linguistic knowledge beyond Arabic and Persian by learning Bengali and English. In 1898, Rokeya married an older magistrate from Bhagalpur, a widower who encouraged her to continue her education as well as to pursue the craft of writing. In 1902, she published an essay in Bengali, beginning a career that would soon flourish with Matichur (1905) and Sultana's Dream (1908), the latter of which has since been recognized as a groundbreaking work of science fiction and feminist utopianism. Following her husband's death, she founded the Sakhawat Memorial Girls' High School in his honor. Initially based in Bhagalpur, she moved the school to Calcutta in 1911 and acted as its head administrator until her death in 1932. Referred to honorifically as Begum Rokeya, she spent the remainder of her life as a tireless advocate for the rights of Bengalis and Muslim women.