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Archives 2016-2017 > Nobel Prize for Literature

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message 1: by Tracy (new)

Tracy (tstan) | 1207 comments The winner of the big prize this year is....Bob Dylan.
Not sure how I feel about this yet.
I love his music and his songs are poetry of a sort.
Is this the first songwriter to win?


message 2: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7782 comments I just saw this as well and am puzzling on it. No offense to Mr. Dylan, but I am leaning toward not being a fan.


message 3: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7782 comments A fan of him geeing the Nobel. Still love his music!


message 4: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Pope (jenjunum) | 902 comments My gut reaction was the same. I wonder why we think so? It is the written word after all, right? For some reason his music seems the most appropriate. But academically, any songwriter should 'qualify'.


message 5: by Tracy (new)

Tracy (tstan) | 1207 comments Jennifer P. wrote: "My gut reaction was the same. I wonder why we think so? It is the written word after all, right? For some reason his music seems the most appropriate. But academically, any songwriter should 'quali..."
You're right. I guess it's that I've always put Literature, Poetry, and Music in different boxes. It's going to take some adjustment in my brain to forget those separations.


message 6: by Olivermagnus (new)

 Olivermagnus (lynda214) | 2223 comments I found it surprising at first but then thought it was a good idea. Most years the committee chooses some obscure writer nobody has ever heard of and whose work is only known to a handful of people around the world. There is probably something that speaks to everyone in the Dylan song catalogue.


message 7: by Ladyslott (last edited Oct 13, 2016 08:03AM) (new)

Ladyslott | 1880 comments I think it's great. Dylan is a poet first and musician second. All of his songs are poems set to music. He has written some of the greatest songs of the past 50 years, starting with Blowin' in the Wind in 1963 when he was 22 years old. He is an iconic songwriter and I think this is well deserved.


message 8: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1545 comments I love Dylan but I am not all that pleased that he won the award. No question that he is unbelievably talented but I don't think he deserves it over other names that were considered favorites. I don't think he can compare to others like:

Mario Vargas Llosa
Coetzee
Irme kertesz
José saramago
Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Maybe I'm just bitter that Murakami never wins despite having written over twenty books that have been translated into English (dozens more not translated), having work translated into 50 languages, having won multiple awards, and being considered one of the world's most popular cult novelists.


message 9: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Pope (jenjunum) | 902 comments To me, Nobel is different. It's a prize more than an award. Sometimes it seems like they're trying to make some kind of statement with who they pick. I'm not sure what they're trying to say. But why this year? Maybe a little of the Hamilton craze got to them and they're reflecting on how music can impact us?


message 10: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1545 comments I agree that it's more than a literary award like those typically given for one piece and instead reflects a life's work and contribution. It's certainly an interesting choice and music and poetry are intertwined. I don't want to minimize Dylan's talent (and I do love him), I just have a hard time reconciling the fact that he beat out certain authors.


message 11: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7782 comments Jen, you and I have very similar feelings about it. I appreciate Dylan's contributions to music, especially music as a form of poetry, but I do not think that is the intent of this specific prize.

I do feel it is a small slight against author's who have dedicated their careers to contributing to literature in the form of fiction and nonfiction novels.


message 12: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1545 comments Nicole R wrote: "Jen, you and I have very similar feelings about it. I appreciate Dylan's contributions to music, especially music as a form of poetry, but I do not think that is the intent of this specific prize. ..."

I think we do. The Swedish Academy has awarded the prize to other poets but it seems qualitatively different to me. For example Herta Muller won in 2009 but she was a poet, novelist, essayist and had won over twenty literary prizes and several human rights awards for her literary work that promoted democracy and human rights.


message 13: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1545 comments that said, it was a fascinating decision and one has generated a lot of interesting discussion about what constitutes literature and literary contributions.


message 14: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Pope (jenjunum) | 902 comments Perhaps they're changing their intent. I don't know, I like it. I don't think anyone expects to win, or maybe they do? I hope that other writers aren't sitting around thinking how they've done more for literature than Dylan. They don't have a prize he fits into better so they clearly have a statement to make about what literature is or they want to include his social/political impact into their decision.


message 15: by Jgrace (new)

Jgrace | 2938 comments Does the Swedish Academy ever publish explanations of their decision process. Anyone know? Every year, I read opinions, like these agreeing or disagreeing with their decision, but I don't remember anything but brief statements about why and never about how they decided. Choosing one person for an award means eliminating many others. How did they make those decisions?


message 16: by Tracy (new)

Tracy (tstan) | 1207 comments With so many great options, it can't be easy. I'm curious about that, too.


message 17: by Ladyslott (last edited Oct 13, 2016 06:31PM) (new)

Ladyslott | 1880 comments http://www.ketv.com/national/bob-dyla...

http://www.forbes.com/sites/allenstjo...

Benjamin Wright: Dylan is constantly playing hide-and-seek with his own image, his own legend, the expectations he himself has set. It’s an emphatically literary way to approach writing and life. The poet William Butler Yeats espoused a “Doctrine of the Mask,” whereby a poem should project the opposite of the poet’s personality. The work is better that way, he believed, and he was probably right.


message 18: by Red52 (last edited Oct 13, 2016 06:24PM) (new)

Red52 http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/201...

My favorite album is 'Blood on the Tracks'. Great stories.


message 19: by Ladyslott (last edited Oct 13, 2016 06:31PM) (new)

Ladyslott | 1880 comments Rina1775 wrote: "http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/201......"

Blonde on Blonde - Possibly his greatest album.


message 20: by Booknblues (new)

Booknblues | 6183 comments I love that Dylan got it! I'm a fan since the sixties. He has written truly great poetry that has been set to music and affected the generation and generations of musicians to come...which in turn impacts their listeners.


message 21: by Charlie (new)

Charlie  Ravioli (charlie_ravioli) | 493 comments Three favorite Dylan lines? Mine are as follows:

I used to care but things have changed...

Ah, but I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now...

You don't need a weather man to know which way the wind blows...


message 22: by Tracy (new)

Tracy (tstan) | 1207 comments My Back Pages is one of my favorites, too. Tangled Up in Blue is probably my very favorite. But there are so many I love!


message 23: by Ladyslott (new)

Ladyslott | 1880 comments Charlie wrote: "Three favorite Dylan lines? Mine are as follows:

I used to care but things have changed...

Ah, but I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now...

You don't need a weather man to know whi..."


My Back Pages is one of my favorites also, I especially like the one from the 60th birthday special for Dylan, great performance.


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