Nobel Prize in Literature 2020 | 09 Oct 2020

Why in News

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2020 has been awarded to the USA poet Louise Glück "for her unmistakable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal."

  • Established by Alfred Nobel in 1895, the Nobel Prize in Literature is one of six awards that also span physics, chemistry, medicine or physiology, peace and economic sciences.
  • The Nobel Prize comes with a medal and a prize sum of 10 million Swedish kronor.

Key Points

  • Glück, born 1943 in New York, lives in Massachusetts and is also professor of English at Yale University.
  • Her poetry focuses on the painful reality of being human, dealing with themes such as death, childhood, and family life.
  • She is the fourth woman to win the prize for literature since 2010, and only the 16th since the Nobel prizes were first awarded in 1901.
    • The last American to win was Bob Dylan in 2016.
  • Glück won the Pulitzer Prize in 1993 for her collection The Wild Iris and the National Book Award in 2014.
  • Criticism of Last year's Winner:
    • Choice of Austrian novelist Peter Handke led to wide criticism.
    • Handke was a known supporter of the Serbs during the 1990s Yugoslav war and spoke at the funeral of former Serb leader Slobodan Milosevic, who was accused of genocide and other war crimes.
    • Last year also saw Polish author Olga Tokarczuk belatedly announced as the winner of the 2018 literature prize which had been suspended for a year after a sexual assault scandal and financial misconduct allegations rocked the Swedish Academy, which awards the annual Nobel Prize for Literature.

Source: IE