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Myshkin

Nobel Literature Prize Speculation 2017

245 posts in this topic

2015 speculation starts at post 182

Well the nominees are in (210 in total, 46 first timers, according to Englund), so I thought we could have some fun speculating on the winner, and even more fun looking back after the prize is awarded to someone none of us ever considered. There are many worthy writers out there, and two in particular who I think the Academy needs to award the prize to. So here are my thoughts on some of the writers the Academy are hopefully considering:

Milan Kundera: Kundera should have won the prize a decade ago. He's exactly the type of writer the Academy seems to love, so it's a mystery to me why they seem to be ignoring him. He's 83 years old, so the Academy needs to get its collective ass in gear. Unfortunately with Transtromer winning last year, it doesn't seem likely that they'll be giving the prize to another European man this year. As Cubs fans say: there's always next year.

Salman Rushdie: Another author who should have won the prize a decade ago. After the strange choice of Dario Fo in 1997 Nobel organizers said Rushdie was "too predictable". Perhaps internal politics have played a role in his snubbing: in 1989 three members (Kerstin Ekman, Werner Aspenstrom, and Lars Gyllensten) left the Swedish Academy after the Academy failed to express support for Rushdie when the Ayatollah issued a fatwa against him. Rushdie at 64 is still fairly young, so I think he will eventually be awarded the prize, but I don't have high hopes that this year is his year.

Carlos Fuentes: One of the foremost authors of the Latin American Boom, Fuentes is another deserving choice. I feel the Boom is underrepresented in Nobel Laureates, even though they already have two. Since another Boomer, Mario Vargas Llosa, won the prize in 2010, there is really very little chance that Fuentes will win the prize anytime soon. Unfortunately this means the 83 year old Fuentes will probably never win the prize. R.I.P. Sr. Fuentes

Haruki Murakami: I love Murakami. He's been something of a frontrunner for the prize the last couple of years. And since it's been 17 years since a Japanese writer (Kenzaburo Oe) won the prize, and 11 years since an Asian writer (Gao Xingjian) won the prize, I give Murakami a pretty good chance this year.

Philip Roth: Roth is another writer who should have won the prize a long time ago. He is perhaps America's premier living author. But since the Academy seems to be reluctant to award the prize to an American, I give him very little chance of winning this year, or ever.

Thomas Pynchon: Probably the only person who can compete with Roth for the title of America's premier living author. Sadly he faces the same problems Roth does in winning the prize. Add to that the fact that he will almost certainly not show up if he did win, and there's little chance he'll win it. But then again, the Academy gave the prize to Sartre even knowing he'd turn it down. And how awesome would it be if Pynchon did show up to accept the prize in person?

Assia Djebar: I've never read her works, but she seems to be a perennial favorite for the prize. Being a North African writer probably helps her cause, since it's been 23 years since someone from the part of the world won the prize (Naguib Mahfouz), while three authors from southern Africa have won the prize during that period. Being a member of the French Academy (one of the institutions which nominates for the Nobel prize) certainly doesn't hurt either. I give her a pretty good chance of winning this year, she may even be the frontrunner. R.I.P.

Adonis: Adonis was the early frontrunner for last year's prize. Being Syrian helps his chances, but being a poet hurts since a poet (Tomas Transtromer) won last year. I don't see him winning it this year, or likely ever. Last year was his chance.

Bob Dylan: I hate to even mention this, but since rumors were wildly flying around late last year about his chances, I guess I have to. I personally think it would be a travesty if Dylan won the prize. I don't have anything against him; he's a great musician, an important musician, but he does not rank in terms of world literature. Fortunately he has almost no chance of winning. Although the Academy does like to surprise us, so Dylan in not completely out of the question. Unbelievably this actually fucking happened

So those are my thoughts on this year's Nobel Prize in Literature. Feel free to pick apart everything I've said, or add your own choices.

Edited by Myshkin

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Not enough China Mieville or Patrick Rothfuss.

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Not enough China Mieville or Patrick Rothfuss.

My opening post was too long as it was. I fully intend to make the case for Mieville and Rothfuss, as well as Stephen King, GRRM, and JK Rowling later in the thread ;) .

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Even though I'm from the USA, I'd really like to see a Canadian win as I don't think anyone from Canada has ever won the Nobel Literature Prize.

The two Canadian authors I have heard mentioned the most often as possibilities are both women, Margaret Atwood and Alice Munro. Atwood is now 72 and Munro is now 80. I'd really like to see one of them win, but have no idea what their true chances are.

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Even though I'm from the USA, I'd really like to see a Canadian win as I don't think anyone from Canada has ever won the Nobel Literature Prize.

The two Canadian authors I have heard mentioned the most often as possibilities are both women, Margaret Atwood and Alice Munro. Atwood is now 72 and Munro is now 80. I'd really like to see one of them win, but have no idea what their true chances are.

I've only read one Atwood, The Blind Assassin, but if it was any indication of the quality of the rest of her work I'd be happy to see her win as well. I haven't read anything by Munro. Another Canadian writer who might have a chance in the future is Rohinton Mistry. He won the Neustadt prize earlier this year. Though I would say the spirit of his work is more Indian than Canadian.

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I was about to suggest Munro as well. I'd also put forth as a possibility Egyptian writer/doctor Nawal El Saadawi, not just for her excellent fiction (including Woman at Point Zero) but also because she was visible during last year's protests.

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Boring troll is boring

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I hope they don't give it to another European writer who is read by just 10 people. *looks at Jelinek* I enjoyed Jelinek's Piano Teacher, but her other works gave me a nosebleed. I'd be fine with Atwood, Murakami (just read 1Q84) or Roth. I agree, Roth is a deserving winner. He's one of those writers who became better with age.

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I hope they don't give it to another European writer who is read by just 10 people. *looks at Jelinek* I enjoyed Jelinek's Piano Teacher, but her other works gave me a nosebleed. I'd be fine with Atwood, Murakami (just read 1Q84) or Roth. I agree, Roth is a deserving winner. He's one of those writers who became better with age.

I'm about halfway through The Piano Teacher. I'll give you my thoughts on Jelinek's Nobel Prize once I'm done.

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in 1989 three members (Kerstin Ekman, Werner Aspenstrom, and Lars Gyllensten) left the Swedish Academy

In one of those Weird Things they cant actually do that.

I mean, they can refuse to attend meetings and such, but membership is for life, once you're in you never get out.

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In one of those Weird Things they cant actually do that.

I mean, they can refuse to attend meetings and such, but membership is for life, once you're in you never get out.

So the Swedish Academy is like the Mafia? I guess that makes sense.

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In one of those Weird Things they cant actually do that.

I mean, they can refuse to attend meetings and such, but membership is for life, once you're in you never get out.

Yeah, Knut Ahnlund's left twice so far.

Edited by Myshkin

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My opening post was too long as it was. I fully intend to make the case for Mieville and Rothfuss, as well as Stephen King, GRRM, and JK Rowling later in the thread ;) .

Thank God you did not, else your OP would have been even a more waste of bandwidth, honestly how can you diss the other guy for calling the Nobel Prize political while all your speculations revolve around everything but literary value and accomplishment?

Boring political prize is boring

Agreed and it is not something new, it has been like this for a loooong time.

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Thank God you did not, else your OP would have been even a more waste of bandwidth, honestly how can you diss the other guy for calling the Nobel Prize political while all your speculations revolve around everything but literary value and accomplishment?

Agreed and it is not something new, it has been like this for a loooong time.

I did not "diss" the other guy for calling the Nobel Prize political; I "dissed" him for dropping a classic trolling line which added absolutely no substance to the thread. If SCO wants to come in here and post about why he dislikes the Nobel Prize, or how he thinks politics has made the prize worthless, I'm all for it. But if he just wants to drop a troll one-liner, he's fair game for being called out on it.

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I would be very pleased if either Rushdie or Murakami took the Prize. I love both of their writings. I've only read short stories by Munro, but the few I've read were magnificent. Sadly, I've not been reading much for fun in the last year or so. I see Roth books all over used bookstores, should I be picking them up? I don't know how to discern - Dan Brown books are also all over these stores.

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Thomas Pynchon: Probably the only person who can compete with Roth for the title of America's premier living author. Sadly he faces the same problems Roth does in winning the prize. Add to that the fact that he will almost certainly not show up if he did win, and there's little chance he'll win it. But then again, the Academy gave the prize to Sartre even knowing he'd turn it down. And how awesome would it be if Pynchon did show up to accept the prize in person?

So those are my thoughts on this year's Nobel Prize in Literature. Feel free to pick apart everything I've said, or add your own choices.

First, who cares who will win the Nobel Prize in literature?

Second, we don't know anything about Pynchon, is he a man, is she a woman, the name means a person or a group etc.?

(By the way, is Krasznahorkai László (Satantango, The Melancholy of Resistance) on the list?)

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Daniel Woodrell. Though he is american which apparently doesn't help. What's the history with the Nobels bias against U.S writers? I'm not exactly clued up on lit awards.

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First, who cares who will win the Nobel Prize in literature?

Second, we don't know anything about Pynchon, is he a man, is she a woman, the name means a person or a group etc.?

(By the way, is Krasznahorkai László (Satantango, The Melancholy of Resistance) on the list?)

I'd say quite a few do, based on even the snarky comments.

Pynchon is known to be a man. He just retreated to seclusion several years ago, after his fame reached its zenith.

Right now, all I hear are rumors and speculations on who would be a good fit. Having read both of the László novels (Satantango was finally published in English about two months ago), he would be a good candidate, depending on how the committee chooses to interpret Nobel's will regarding literature with "a ideal direction."

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