Nobel Prize for Literature
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The Nobel Prize in Literature is awarded annually, since 1901, to an author from any country who has, in the words from the will of Alfred Nobel, produced "the most outstanding work of an idealistic tendency". The "work" in this case refers to an author's work as a whole, though individual works are sometimes also cited.
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Nom de plume of René François Armand Prudhomme; France, 1839-1907
Germany, 1817-1903; author of "A History of Rome"
France, 1830-1914 / Spain, 1832-1916
Poland, 1846-1916; "because of his outstanding merits as an epic writer"
United Kingdom, 1865-1936; "in consideration of the power of observation, originality of imagination, virility of ideas and remarkable talent for narration which characterize the creations of this world famous writer"
India, 1861-1941; "because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which...he has made his poetic thought...a part of the literature of the West"
Denmark, 1857-1919 / Denmark, 1857-1943
Switzerland, 1845-1924; "in special recognition of his epic Olympian Spring"
Norway, 1859-1952; "for his monumental work Growth of the Soil"
Pen-name of Jacques Anatole Thibeault; France, 1844-1924; "in recognition of his brilliant literary achievements...and a true Gallic temperament"
Ireland, 1865-1939; "for his always inspired poetry, which in a highly artistic form gives expression to the spirit of a whole nation"
Poland, 1867-1925; "for his great national epic, The Peasants"
United Kingdom, 1856-1950; "for his work which is marked by both idealism and humanity, its stimulating satire often being infused with a singular poetic beauty"
Pen-name of Grazia Madesani, née Deledda; Italy, 1871-1936
Norway, 1882-1949; "principially for her powerful descriptions of Northern life during the Middle Ages"
Germany, 1875-1955; "principally for his great novel Buddenbrooks, which has won steadily increased recognition as one of the classic works of contemporary literature"
USA, 1885-1951; "for his vigorous and graphic art of description and his ability to create, with wit and humour, new types of characters"
Sweden, 1864-1931; "The poetry of Erik Axel Karlfeldt"
United Kingdom, 1867-1933; "for his distinguished art of narration which takes its highest form in The Forsyte Saga"
Stateless domicile in France, 1870-1953
Italy, 1867-1936; "for his bold and ingenious revival of dramatic and scenic art"
USA, 1888-1953; "for the power, honesty and deep-felt emotions of his dramatic works, which embody an original concept of tragedy"
Pen-name of Pearl Walsh, née Sydenstricker; USA, 1892-1973; "for her rich and truly epic descriptions of peasant life in China and for her biographical masterpieces:
Pen-name of Lucila Godoy y Alcayaga; Chile, 1889-1957
Switzerland, 1877-1962; "for his inspired writings which, while growing in boldness and penetration, exemplify the classical humanitarian ideals and high qualities of style"
1869-1951; "for his comprehensive and artistically significant writings...."
United Kingdom, 1888-1965; "for his outstanding, pioneer contribution to present-day poetry"
USA, 1897-1962; "for his powerful and artistically unique contribution to the modern American novel"
United Kingdom, 1872-1970; "in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought"
France, 1885-1970; "for the deep spiritual insight and the artistic intensity with which he has in his novels penetrated the drama of human life"
United Kingdom, 1874-1965; "for his mastery of historical and biological description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values"
USA, 1899-1961; "for his mastery of the art of narrative, most recently demonstrated in The Old Man and the Sea, and for the influence he has exerted on contemporary style"
Iceland, 1902-1998; "for his vivid epic power which has renewed the great epic power of Iceland"
France, 1913-1960; "for his important literary production which...illuminates the problems of the human conscience in our times"
USSR, 1890-1960; "for his important achievement both in contemporary lyrical poetry and in the field of the great Russian epic tradition"
Italy, 1901-1968; "for his lyrical poetry, which with classical fire expresses the tragic experience of life in our times"
France, 1887-1975; pen name of Alexis Léger
USA, 1902-1968; "for his realistic and imaginative writings, combining as they do sympathetic humour and keen social perception"
France, 1905-1980; "for his work which...has exerted a far-reaching influence on our age"
Israel, 1888-1970 / Sweden, 1891-1970; both for writing about Israel and the Jewish people
Guatemala, 1899-1974; "for his vivid literary achievement, deep-rooted in the national traits and traditions of Indian peoples of Latin America"
Japan, 1899-1972; "for his narrative mastery which, with great sensibility expresses the essence of the Japanese mind"
Ireland, 1906-1989; "for his writing, which - in new forms for the novel and drama - in the destitution of modern man acquires its elevation"
USSR, 1918-2008; "for the ethical force with which he has pursued the indispensable traditions of Russian literature"
Chile, 1904-1973; pen-name of Neftali Ricardo Reyes Basoalto; "for a poetry that with the action of an elemental force brings alive a continent's destiny and dreams"
Germany 1917-1985; "for his writing which...has contributed to a renewel of German literature"
Australia, 1912-1990; "for an epic and psychological narrative art which has introduced a new continent into literature"
Sweden, 1900-1976; "for a narrative art...in the service of freedom" / Sweden, 1904-1978; "for writings that catch the dewdrop and reflect the cosmos"
Italy, 1896-1981; "for his distinctive poetry...."
USA, 1915-2005; "for the human understanding and subtle analysis of contemporary culture that are combined in his work"
USA, 1904-1991; "for his impassioned narrative art which, with roots in a Polish-Jewish cultural tradition, brings universal human conditions to life"
Poland and USA, 1911-2004
United Kingdom, 1905-1994
Colombia, b.1928; "for his novels and short stories, in which the fantastic and the realistic are combined in a richly composed world of imagination, reflecting a continent's life and conflicts"
United Kingdom, 1911-1993; "for his novels which, with perspicuity of realistic narrative art and the diversity and universality of myth, illuminate the human condition in the world today"
Nigeria, b.1934; "who in a wide cultural perspective and with poetic overtones fashions the drama of existence"
USA, 1940-1996; "for an all-embracing authorship, imbued with clarity of thought and poetic intensity"
Spain, 1916-2002; "for a rich and intensive prose, which with restrained compassion forms a challenging vision of man's vulnerability"
Mexico, 1914-1998; "for impassioned writing with wide horizons, characterized by sensuous intelligence and humanistic integrity"
South Africa, b.1923; "who through her magnificent epic writing has - in the words of Alfred Nobel - been of very great benefit to humanity"
St. Lucia, b.1930; "for a poetic oeuvre of great luminosity, sustained by a historical vision, the outcome of a multicultural commitment"
USA, b.1931; "who in novels characterized by visionary force and poetic import, gives life to an essential aspect of American reality"
Japan, b.1935; "who with poetic force creates an imagined world, where life and myth condense to form a disconcerting picture of the human predicament today"
Ireland, b.1939; "for works of lyrical beauty and ethical depth, which exalt everyday miracles and the living past"
Poland, b.1923; "for poetry that with ironic precision allows the historical and biological context to come to light in fragments of human reality"
Italy, b.1926, "who emulates the jesters of the Middle Ages in scourging authority and upholding the dignity of the downtrodden"
Portugal, 1922-2010; "who with parables sustained with imagination, compassion and irony continually enable us once again to apprehend an elusory reality"
Germany, b.1927; "whose frolicsome black fables portray the forgotten face of history"
France, b.1940; "for an ouvre of universal validity, bitter insights and linguistic ingenuity, which has opened new paths for the Chinese novel and drama"
United Kingdom, b.1932; "for having united perceptive narrative and incorruptible scrutiny in works that compel us to see the presence of suppressed histories"
Hungary, b.1929; "for writing that upholds the fragile experience of the individual against the arbitrariness of history"
South Africa, b.1940; "who in innumerable guises portrays the surprising involvement of the outsider"
Austria, b. 1946; "for her musical flow of voices and counter-voices in novels and plays that with extraordinary linguistic zeal reveal the absurdity of society's clichés and their subjugating power"
United Kingdom, b. 1930; "who in his plays uncovers the precipice under everyday prattle and forces entry into opression's closed rooms"
Turkey, b. 1952; "who in the quest for the melancholic soul of his native city has discovered new symbols for the clash and interlacing of cultures"
Aged 87 she was the oldest author to win. One of the British writer's best known books is The Golden Notebook.
France, b.1940, author of new departures, poetic adventure and sensual ecstasy, explorer of a humanity beyond and below the reigning civilization
Romania, b.1953, who with concentration of poetry and the frankness of prose, depicts the landscape of the dispossessed
Peru, b.1936, for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individuals resistance, revolt, and defeat
Sweden, b.1931, because through his condensed, translucent images, he gives us fresh access to reality
China, b.1955, who with hallucinatory realism, folk tales, history and the contemporary
Canada, 1931, master of the contempory short story
USA - b.1941 singer/songwriter. Bob Dylan has refused to acknowledge the award and it is unknown if he will accept it. The Award website lists recipients whether they accept it or not.
British novelist born 1954.
Polish writer psychologist and activist. "for a narrative imagination that with encyclopedic passion represents the crossing of boundaries as a form of life." Due to the controversy surrounding allegations of sexual abuse and wrongdoing within the academy, the 2018 ceremony was scrapped and the prize was not awarded until 2019.
Austrian novelist poet, playwright and director. "for an influential work that with linguistic ingenuity has explored the periphery and the specificity of human experience."
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