John Arden was born in Barnsley, England. He has been widely lauded as one of the most significant British playwrights of the 1950s and 60s.
He wrote the highly regarded 1959 play, Serjeant Musgrave’s Dance, and his 1978 radio play Pearl was considered in a Guardian survey to be one of the best plays in that medium. He also wrote several novels, including Silence Among the Weapons, which was shortlisted for the 1982 Booker Prize and Books of Bale, about the Protestant apologist John Bale. Arden was a member of the Royal Society of Literature.