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Luljeta Lleshanaku was born in Elbasan, Albania in 1968. She grew up under house arrest in Enver Hoxha’s Stalinist dictatorship. Lleshanaku was not allowed to attend college or publish her poetry until the weakening and eventual collapse of the regime in the early 1990s. She later studied Albanian philology at the University of Tirana, and has worked as a schoolteacher, literary magazine editor and journalist. She won the prestigious Kristal Vilenica Prize in 2009, and has given readings in America, Europe and in Ireland at the Poetry Now Festival in Dún Laoghaire in 2010.