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Nobel Prize in Literature

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Nobel Prize in Literature

On 27 November 1895, Alfred Nobel signed his last will and testament, giving the largest share of his fortune to a series of prizes, the Nobel Prizes. As described in Nobel's will one part was dedicated to 'the person who shall have produced in the field of literature the most outstanding work in an ideal direction'.


Since 1901, the Nobel Prize for Literature (Swedish: Nobelpriset i litteratur) has been awarded annually to an author from any country who has, in the words from the will of Alfred Nobel, produced "in the field of literature the most outstanding work in an ideal direction" (original Swedish: den som inom litteraturen har producerat det utmärktaste i idealisk riktning). Though individual works are sometimes cited as being particularly noteworthy, here "Work" refers to an author's work as a whole. The Swedish Academy decides who, if anyone, will receive the prize in any given year. The academy announces the name of the chosen laureate in early October. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Physics, Nobel Peace Prize, and Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. A sixth Nobel Prize in Economical Sciences in memory of Alfred Nobel was added in 1986.

Nobel's choice of emphasis on "idealistic" or "ideal" (English translation) in his criteria for the Nobel Prize in Literature has led to recurrent controversy. In the original Swedish, the word idealisk translates as either "idealistic" or "ideal". In the early twentieth century, the Nobel Committee interpreted the intent of the will strictly. For this reason, they did not award certain world-renowned authors of the time such as James Joyce, Leo Tolstoy, Marcel Proust, Henrik Ibsen, and Henry James. More recently, the wording has been more liberally interpreted. Thus, the Prize is now awarded both for lasting literary merit and for evidence of consistent idealism on some significant level. In recent years, this means a kind of idealism championing human rights on a broad scale. Hence the award is now arguably more political.

"The highlight of the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony in Stockholm is when each Nobel Laureate steps forward to receive the prize from the hands of His Majesty the King of Sweden. ... Under the eyes of a watching world, the Nobel Laureate receives three things: a diploma, a medal, and a document confirming the prize amount". The 2010 Nobel Prize in Literature was awarded to Mario Vargas Llosa for "his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual's resistance, revolt, and defeat".

The Swedish Academy has attracted significant criticism in recent years. Some critics contend that many well-known writers have not been awarded the prize or even been nominated, whereas others contend that some well-known recipients do not deserve it. There have also been controversies involving alleged political interests relating to the nomination process and ultimate selection of some of the recent literary Laureates.

Sources and Resources

Facts and figures:

  • The Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded 116 times to 120 Nobel Laureates (17 of them were women) between 1901 and 2023.
  • The youngest Literature Laureate ever was Rudyard Kipling, who was 41, when he was awarded the Prize in 1907; best known for The Jungle Book.
  • The oldest Literature Laureate ever was Doris Lessing, who was 88 when she was awarded the Prize in 2007, her novels include:'The Grass is Singing', 'The Golden Notebook' and five novels collectively known as 'Canopus in Argos'.
  • Two people have declined the Nobel Prize in Literature
    • Boris Pasternak, the 1958 Nobel Prize in Literature, “Accepted first, later caused by the authorities of his country (Soviet Union) to decline the Prize”.
    • Jean Paul Sartre, the 1964 Nobel Prize in Literature, declined the prize because he had consistently declined all official honours.
  • Multiple Nobel Laureates in Literature: No one has been awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature more than once.

The laureates (by year):

  • 2023: [ Jon Fosse] (b. 1959) Norwegian author and dramatist.“for his innovative plays and prose which give voice to the unsayable”.
  • 2022: Annie Ernaux (b. 1940) French writer and professor of literature. “for the courage and clinical acuity with which she uncovers the roots, estrangements and collective restraints of personal memory”.
  • 2021: Abdulrazak Gurnah, FRSL (b. 1948) Tanzanian novelist based in the United Kingdom, "for his uncompromising and compassionate penetration of the effects of colonialism and the fates of the refugee in the gulf between cultures and continents".
  • 2020: Louise Elisabeth Glück (b. 1943) American poet and essayist, "“for her unmistakable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal”.
  • 2019: Peter Handke (b. 1942) Austrian novelist, playwright and translator, “for an influential work that with linguistic ingenuity has explored the periphery and the specificity of human experience”
  • 2018: awarded in 2019, to Olga Tokarczuk (b. 1962) Polish writer, activist, and public intellectual, “for a narrative imagination that with encyclopedic passion represents the crossing of boundaries as a form of life”
  • 2017: Kazuo Ishiguro, OBE, FRSA, FRSL カズオ・イシグロ or 石黒 一雄 (b. 1954) British novelist, screenwriter and short story writer, "who, in novels of great emotional force, has uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world".
  • 2016: Bob Dylan (Robert Allen Zimmerman) (b. 1941) American singer-songwriter, artist and writer, "for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition".
  • 2015: Svetlana Alexandrovna Alexievich (b. 1948) Belarousian author, "for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time".
  • 2014: Patrick Modiano (b. 1945) French author, “for the art of memory with which he has evoked the most ungraspable human destinies and uncovered the life-world of the occupation”.
  • 2013: Alice Ann Munro (née Laidlaw); (b.1931) Canadian author, "master of the contemporary short story".
  • 2012: Mo Yan, 莫言 (b. 1955) Chinese novelist and short story writer, "who with hallucinatory realism merges folk tales, history and the contemporary".
  • 2011: Tomas Tranströmer (1931 – 2015) Swedish writer, poet and translator, "because, through his condensed, translucent images, he gives us fresh access to reality".
  • 2010: Jorge Mario Pedro Vargas Llosa, 1st Marquis of Vargas Llosa (b. 1936) Peruvian-Spanish writer, politician, journalist, essayist, "for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual's resistance, revolt, and defeat". Best known novels: 'The Time of the Hero', 'The Green House', and the monumental 'Conversation in the Cathedral'.
  • 2009: Herta Müller (b. 1953) Romanian-born German novelist, poet and essayist, "who, with the concentration of poetry and the frankness of prose, depicts the landscape of the dispossessed".
  • 2008: Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio (b. 1940) French & Mauritian novelist, short stories author, essayist and translator, "author of new departures, poetic adventure and sensual ecstasy, explorer of a humanity beyond and below the reigning civilization".
  • 2007: Doris Lessing (1919 – 2013) British Novelist and writer, "that epicist of the female experience, who with scepticism, fire and visionary power has subjected a divided civilization to scrutiny". Her novels include 'The Grass is Singing', 'The Golden Notebook' and five novels collectively known as 'Canopus in Argos'.
  • 2006: Ferit Orhan Pamuk (b. 1952) Turkish novelist, screen writer and academic.His work has been sold in over eleven million copies in sixty languages. The first Nobel Prize to be awarded to a Turkish citizen.
  • 2005: Harold Pinter, CH, CBE (1930 – 2008) Jewish author, English playwright, screenwriter, actor, theatre director, poet, left-wing political activist and cricket enthusiast, "who in his plays uncovers the precipice under everyday prattle and forces entry into oppression's closed rooms". There can be no hard distinctions between what is real and what is unreal, nor between what is true and what is false. A thing is not necessarily either true or false; it can be both true and false.
  • 2004: Elfriede Jelinek (b. 1946) Jewish author, Austrian playwright and novelist. Did not accept the prize in person, "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".
  • 2003: John Maxwell Coetzee (b. 1940) South Africa born Australian novelist, literary critic and translator, "who in innumerable guises portrays the surprising involvement of the outsider". Coetzee began writing fiction in 1969. Among others he wrote In the Heart of the Country (1977) Waiting for the Barbarians (1980) received international notice. Life & Times of Michael K (1983), won Britain's Booker Prize. Disgrace (1999), which again won the Booker Prize.
  • 2002: Imre Kertész (1929 – 2016) Hungarian Jewish author, Holocaust concentration camp survivor, and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, "for writing that upholds the fragile experience of the individual against the barbaric arbitrariness of history".
  • 2001: Sir Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul (1932 – 2018) Indo-Trinidadian-British writer, "for having united perceptive narrative and incorruptible scrutiny in works that compel us to see the presence of suppressed histories".
  • 2000: Gao Xingjian 高行健 (born 1940) Chinese-born novelist, playwright, critic, and painter, "for an œuvre of universal validity, bitter insights and linguistic ingenuity, which has opened new paths for the Chinese novel and drama".
  • 1999: Günter Grass (1927 – 2015) German Novelist, Poet, Playwright, Sculptor, Graphic Designer, Painter, "whose frolicsome black fables portray the forgotten face of history". Best known novel The Tin Drum.
  • 1998: Jose Saramango (1922 – 2010) Portuguese novelist, playwright, journalist, "who with parables sustained by imagination, compassion and irony continually enables us once again to apprehend an elusory reality".
  • 1997: Dario Fo (1926 – 2016) Italian satirist, playwright, theater director, actor and composer, "who emulates the jesters of the Middle Ages in scourging authority and upholding the dignity of the downtrodden".
  • 1996: Wisława Szymborska (1923 – 2012) Polish poet, essayist and translator, "for poetry that with ironic precision allows the historical and biological context to come to light in fragments of human reality".
  • 1995: Seamus Heaney (1939 – 2013) Irish poet, writer and lecturer, "for works of lyrical beauty and ethical depth, which exalt everyday miracles and the living past". Considered by many as the greatest Irish poet since Yeats.
  • 1994: Kenzaburo Ōe (1935 – 2023) Japanese author and a major figure in contemporary Japanese literature, "who with poetic force creates an imagined world, where life and myth condense to form a disconcerting picture of the human predicament today".
  • 1993: Toni Morrison (1931 – 2019) American author and editor, "who in novels characterized by visionary force and poetic import, gives life to an essential aspect of American reality".
  • 1992: Derek Alton Walcott (1930 – 2017) Saint Lucian poet, playwright, writer and visual artist, "for a poetic oeuvre of great luminosity, sustained by a historical vision, the outcome of a multicultural commitment".
  • 1991: Nadine Gordimer (1923 – 2014) Jewish South African writer, political activist, "who through her magnificent epic writing has - in the words of Alfred Nobel - been of very great benefit to humanity".
  • 1990: Octavio Paz (1914 – 1998) Mexican writer, poet, diplomat, "for impassioned writing with wide horizons, characterized by sensuous intelligence and humanistic integrity".
  • 1989: Camilo José, Manuel Juan Ramón Francisco de Jerónimo, Cela y Trulock (1916 – 2002) Spanish novelist and short story writer, "for a rich and intensive prose, which with restrained compassion forms a challenging vision of man's vulnerability".
  • 1988: نجيب محفوظ Naguib Mahfouz (1911 – 2006) Egyptian writer, "who, through works rich in nuance - now clear-sightedly realistic, now evocatively ambiguous - has formed an Arabian narrative art that applies to all mankind".
  • 1987: Joseph Brodsky (1940 – 1996) Russian Jewish poet and essayist, "for an all-embracing authorship, imbued with clarity of thought and poetic intensity".
  • 1986: Akinwande Oluwole -Wole- Soyinka (b. 1934) Nigerian writer, poet and playwright, "who in a wide cultural perspective and with poetic overtones fashions the drama of existence".
  • 1985: Claude Simon (1913 – 2005) French novelist, "who in his novel combines the poet's and the painter's creativeness with a deepened awareness of time in the depiction of the human condition".
  • 1984: Jaroslav Seifert (1901 – 1986) Czech writer, poet and journalist, "for his poetry which endowed with freshness, sensuality and rich inventiveness provides a liberating image of the indomitable spirit and versatility of man".
  • 1983: sir William Gerald Golding (1911 – 1993) British novelist, poet and playwright, "for his novels which, with the perspicuity of realistic narrative art and the diversity and universality of myth, illuminate the human condition in the world of today".
  • 1982: Gabriel Garcia Marquez (1927 – 2014) Colombian novelist, short-story writer, screenwriter and journalist, known affectionately as Gabo, "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".
  • 1981: Elias Canetti Елиас Канети (1905 – 1994) Bulgarian-born novelist and non-fiction writer of Sephardi Jewish ancestry who wrote in German, "for writings marked by a broad outlook, a wealth of ideas and artistic power".
  • 1980: Czesław Miłosz (1911 – 2004) Polish poet, prose writer and translator, of Lithuanian origin and subsequent American citizenship, "who with uncompromising clear-sightedness voices man's exposed condition in a world of severe conflicts". His famous novel The Captive Mind Polish: Zniewolony umysł)
  • 1979: Odysseus Elytis (1911 – 1996) Greek poet, "for his poetry, which, against the background of Greek tradition, depicts with sensuous strength and intellectual clear-sightedness modern man's struggle for freedom and creativeness".
  • 1978: Isaac Bashevis Singer (1902 – 1991) Polish Jewish American author noted for his short stories, "for his impassioned narrative art which, with roots in a Polish-Jewish cultural tradition, brings universal human conditions to life".
  • 1977: Vicente Pío Marcelino Cirilo Aleixandre y Merlo (1898 – 1984) Spanish poet, "for a creative poetic writing which illuminates man's condition in the cosmos and in present-day society, at the same time representing the great renewal of the traditions of Spanish poetry between the wars".
  • 1976: Saul Bellow (1915 – 2005) Canadian-born American Jewish writer. Awarded also the Pulitzer Prize & the National Medal of Arts. Nobel Prize motivation: "for the human understanding and subtle analysis of contemporary culture that are combined in his work".
  • 1975: Eugenio Montale (1896 – 1981) Italian poet, prose writer, editor and translator, "for his distinctive poetry which, with great artistic sensitivity, has interpreted human values under the sign of an outlook on life with no illusions".
  • 1974: jointly to: Harry Martinson (1904 – 1978) Swedish sailor, author and poet, "for writings that catch the dewdrop and reflect the cosmos".
  • 1973: Patrick Victor Martindale White (1912 – 1990) Australian novelist, short story writer, and playwright, "for an epic and psychological narrative art which has introduced a new continent into literature".
  • 1972: Heinrich Theodor Böll (1917 – 1985) One of Germany's foremost post-World War II writers, "for his writing which through its combination of a broad perspective on his time and a sensitive skill in characterization has contributed to a renewal of German literature".
  • 1971: Pablo Neruda (1904 – 1973) Chilean poet and politician. Known for Twenty Poems of Love and a Song of Despair, surrealist poems, historical epics, and overtly political manifestos, "for a poetry that with the action of an elemental force brings alive a continent's destiny and dreams".
  • 1970: Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn (1918 – 2008) Russian and Soviet novelist, dramatist, and historian, "for the ethical force with which he has pursued the indispensable traditions of Russian literature". Notable work: One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, The First Circle, The Cancer Ward, The Gulag Archipelago, The Red Wheel.
  • 1969: Samuel Barclay Beckett (1906 – 1989) Irish avant-garde novelist, playwright, theatre director, and poet, "for his writing, which - in new forms for the novel and drama - in the destitution of modern man acquires its elevation".
  • 1968: Yasunari Kawabata (1899 – 1972) Japanese short story writer and novelist, "for his narrative mastery, which with great sensibility expresses the essence of the Japanese mind".
  • 1967: Miguel Asturias (1899 – 1974) Guatemalan poet, novelist, playwright, journalist and diplomat, "for his vivid literary achievement, deep-rooted in the national traits and traditions of Indian peoples of Latin America".
  • 1966: jointly to: Nelly Sachs (1891 – 1970) Jewish German poet and playwright, "for her outstanding lyrical and dramatic writing, which interprets Israel's destiny with touching strength"; and Shai Agnon (1888 – 1970) Israeli author, "for his profoundly characteristic narrative art with motifs from the life of the Jewish people".
  • 1965: Mikhail Aleksandrovich Sholokhov (1905 – 1984) Russian novelist, "for the artistic power and integrity with which, in his epic of the Don, he has given expression to a historic phase in the life of the Russian people". His most famous novel Tikhi Don (And Quiet Flows the Don).
  • 1964: Jean-Paul Sartre (1905 – 1980) French existentialist philosopher, playwright, novelist, screenwriter, political activist, biographer, and literary critic, "for his work which, rich in ideas and filled with the spirit of freedom and the quest for truth, has exerted a far-reaching influence on our age". Declined the Nobel Prize.
  • 1963: Giorgos Seferis (1900 – 1971) Greek poet and diplomat, "for his eminent lyrical writing, inspired by a deep feeling for the Hellenic world of culture."
  • 1962: John Steinbeck (1902 – 1968) American writer, "for his realistic and imaginative writings, combining as they do sympathetic humour and keen social perception".
  • 1961: Ivo Andrić (1892 – 1975) Yugoslav novelist and short story writer, "for the epic force with which he has traced themes and depicted human destinies drawn from the history of his country".
  • 1960: Saint-John Perse (1887 – 1975) French poet and diplomat, "for the soaring flight and evocative imagery of his poetry."
  • 1959: Salvatore Quasimodo (1901 – 1968) Italian author and poet, "for his lyrical poetry, which with classical fire expresses the tragic experience of life in our own times".
  • 1958: Boris Pasternak Борис Пастернак (1890 – 1960) Russian language Jewish poet, novelist, and translator of Goethe and Shakespeare. Best known for the anthology My Sister Life and Doctor Zhivago, "for his important achievement both in contemporary lyrical poetry and in the field of the great Russian epic tradition".
  • 1957: Albert Camus (1913 – 1960) French author, journalist, and key philosopher of the 20th century, "for his important literary production, which with clear-sighted earnestness illuminates the problems of the human conscience in our times".
  • 1956: Juan Ramón Jiménez Mantecón (1881 – 1958) Spanish poet and prolific writer, "for his lyrical poetry, which in Spanish language constitutes an example of high spirit and artistical purity".
  • 1955: Halldór Kiljan Laxness born Guðjónsson (1902 – 1998) Icelandic writer of poetry, newspaper articles, plays, travelogues, short stories, and novels, "for his vivid epic power which has renewed the great narrative art of Iceland".
  • 1954: Ernest Hemingway (1899 – 1961) American novelist, short-story writer, and journalist, "for his mastery of the art of narrative, most recently demonstrated in The Old Man and the Sea, and for the influence that he has exerted on contemporary style".
  • 1953: Sir Winston Churchill KG, OM, CH, TD, FRS, PC (1874 – 1965) A noted statesman, orator, soldier, historian, writer, and artist, "for his mastery of historical and biographical description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values".
  • 1952: François Mauriac (1885 – 1970) French author, "for the deep spiritual insight and the artistic intensity with which he has in his novels penetrated the drama of human life"
  • 1951: Pär Fabian Lagerkvist (1891 – 1974) Swedish author, "for the artistic vigour and true independence of mind with which he endeavours in his poetry to find answers to the eternal questions confronting mankind".
  • 1950: Earl (Bertrand Arthur William) Russell (1872 – 1970) British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, pacifist, and social critic, "in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought".
  • 1949: William Faulkner (1897 – 1962) American novelist and short story writer. One of the most influential writers of the 20th century, "for his powerful and artistically unique contribution to the modern American novel". His best-known works include: The Sound and the Fury, As I Lay Dying, A Fable.
  • 1948: Thomas Eliot (1888 – 1965) American-born English poet, playwright, and literary critic, arguably the most important English-language poet of the 20th century, "for his outstanding, pioneer contribution to present-day poetry".
  • 1947: André Paul Guillaume Gide (1869 – 1951) French author, "for his comprehensive and artistically significant writings, in which human problems and conditions have been presented with a fearless love of truth and keen psychological insight".
  • 1946: Hermann Hesse (1877 – 1962) German-Swiss poet, novelist, and painter, "for his inspired writings which, while growing in boldness and penetration, exemplify the classical humanitarian ideals and high qualities of style". His best-known works include Steppenwolf, Siddhartha, and The Glass Bead Game (also known as Magister Ludi).
  • 1945: Gabriela Mistral (1889 – 1957) Chilean poet, educator, diplomat, and feminist who was the first Latin American to win the Nobel Prize in Literature, "for her lyric poetry which, inspired by powerful emotions, has made her name a symbol of the idealistic aspirations of the entire Latin American world".
  • 1944: Johannes Vilhelm Jensen (1873 – 1950) Danish writer, "for the rare strength and fertility of his poetic imagination with which is combined an intellectual curiosity of wide scope and a bold, freshly creative style",
  • 1943: not awarded
  • 1942: not awarded
  • 1941: not awarded
  • 1940: not awarded
  • 1939: Frans Eemil Sillanpää (1888 – 1964) Finnish writer, "for his deep understanding of his country's peasantry and the exquisite art with which he has portrayed their way of life and their relationship with Nature."
  • 1938: Pearl S. Buck (1892 – 1973) also known by her Chinese name Sai Zhenzhu, 賽珍珠. American writer (until 1934 in China). Pulitzer Prize in 1932. In 1938, and the first American woman to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, "for her rich and truly epic descriptions of peasant life in China and for her biographical masterpieces." Her best known novel was The Good Earth.
  • 1937: Roger Martin du Gard (1881 – 1958) French author, "for the artistic power and truth with which he has depicted human conflict as well as some fundamental aspects of contemporary life in his novel-cycle Les Thibault".
  • 1936: Eugene O'Neill (1888 – 1953) American playwright, "for the power, honesty and deep-felt emotions of his dramatic works, which embody an original concept of tragedy".
  • 1935: not awarded
  • 1934: Luigi Pirandello (1867 – 1936) Italian dramatist, novelist, and short story writer "for his bold and brilliant renovation of the drama and the stage."
  • 1933: Ivan Alekseyevich Bunin (1870 – 1953) Russian writer, "for the strict artistry with which he has carried on the classical Russian traditions in prose writing".
  • 1932: John Galsworthy (1867 – 1933) English novelist and playwright, "for his distinguished art of narration which takes its highest form in The Forsyte Saga".
  • 1931: Erik Axel Karlfeldt (1864 – 1931) Swedish poet, for "The poetry of Erik Axel Karlfeldt".
  • 1930: Sinclair Lewis (1885 – 1951) American novelist, short-story writer, and playwright, "for his vigorous and graphic art of description and his ability to create, with wit and humour, new types of characters".
  • 1929: Thomas Mann (1875 – 1955) German novelist, short story writer, social critic, philanthropist and essayist, "principally for his great novel, Buddenbrooks, which has won steadily increased recognition as one of the classic works of contemporary literature".
  • 1928: Sigrid Undset (1882 – 1949) Norwegian novelist, "principially for her powerful descriptions of Northern life during the Middle Ages".
  • 1927: Henri Bergson (1859 – 1941) French Jewish philosopher, "in recognition of his rich and vitalizing ideas and the brillant skill with which they have been presented".
  • 1926: Grazia Deledda (1871 – 1936) Italian novelist and short story writer, "for her idealistically inspired writings which with plastic clarity picture the life on her native island and with depth and sympathy deal with human problems in general".
  • 1925: George Bernard Shaw (1856 – 1950) Irish playwright, "for his work which is marked by both idealism and humanity, its stimulating satire often being infused with a singular poetic beauty".
  • 1924: Wladyslaw Stanislaw Reymont (1867 – 1925) Polish Novelist, "for his great national epic, The Peasants".
  • 1923: William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939) Irish poet and dramatist, "for his always inspired poetry, which in a highly artistic form gives expression to the spirit of a whole nation".
  • 1922: Jacinto Benavente y Benavente (1866 – 1954) Spanish dramatists, "for the happy manner in which he has continued the illustrious traditions of the Spanish drama".
  • 1921: Anatole France, born François-Anatole Thibault (1844 – 1924) French poet, journalist, and novelist, "in recognition of his brilliant literary achievements, characterized as they are by a nobility of style, a profound human sympathy, grace, and a true Gallic temperament".
  • 1920: Knut Hamsun (1859 – 1952) Norwegian author, "for his monumental work, Growth of the Soil".
  • 1919: Carl Friedrich Georg Spitteler (1845 – 1924) Swiss Poet, "in special appreciation of his epic, Olympian Spring".
  • 1918: not awarded
  • 1917: jointly to: Karl Adolph Gjellerup (1857 – 1919) Danish poet and novelist, "for his varied and rich poetry, which is inspired by lofty ideals", and to Henrik Pontoppidan (1857 – 1943) Danish writer, "for his authentic descriptions of present-day life in Denmark".
  • 1916: Carl Gustaf Verner von Heidenstam (1859 – 1940) Swedish poet and novelist, "in recognition of his significance as the leading representative of a new era in our literature".
  • 1915: Romain Rolland (1866 – 1944) French dramatist, novelist, essayist, art historian and mystic, "as a tribute to the lofty idealism of his literary production and to the sympathy and love of truth with which he has described different types of human beings".
  • 1914: not awarded
  • 1913: Rabindranath Tagore (1861 – 1941) Bengali poet, novelist, musician, painter and playwright, "because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which, with consummate skill, he has made his poetic thought, expressed in his own English words, a part of the literature of the West".
  • 1912: Gerhart Johann Robert Hauptmann (1862 – 1946) was a German dramatist and novelist, "primarily in recognition of his fruitful, varied and outstanding production in the realm of dramatic art".
  • 1911: count Maurice Polydore Marie Bernhard Maeterlinck (1862 – 1949) Belgian playwright, poet, and essayist who wrote in French, "in appreciation of his many-sided literary activities, and especially of his dramatic works, which are distinguished by a wealth of imagination and by a poetic fancy, which reveals, sometimes in the guise of a fairy tale, a deep inspiration, while in a mysterious way they appeal to the readers' own feelings and stimulate their imaginations".
  • 1910: Paul Johann Ludwig von Heyse (1830 – 1914) German Jewish writer and translator, "as a tribute to the consummate artistry, permeated with idealism, which he has demonstrated during his long productive career as a lyric poet, dramatist, novelist and writer of world-renowned short stories".
  • 1909: Selma Lagerlöf (1858 – 1940) Swedish author. Known for her children's book 'The Wonderful Adventures of Nils Holgerssons', "in appreciation of the lofty idealism, vivid imagination and spiritual perception that characterize her writings".
  • 1908: Rudolf Christoph Eucken (1846 – 1926) German philosopher, "in recognition of his earnest search for truth, his penetrating power of thought, his wide range of vision, and the warmth and strength in presentation with which in his numerous works he has vindicated and developed an idealistic philosophy of life".
  • 1907: Rudyard Kipling (1865 – 1936) English poet, short-story writer, and novelist, "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 author".
  • 1906: Giosuè Carducci (1835 – 1907) Regarded as the national poet of modern Italy, "not only in consideration of his deep learning and critical research, but above all as a tribute to the creative energy, freshness of style, and lyrical force which characterize his poetic masterpieces".
  • 1905: Henryk Sienkiewicz (1846 – 1916) Polish journalist and novelist. Best known for: "Quo Vadis" and the 'trilogy' - "With Fire and Sword" "The Deluge" and "Fire in the Steppe", "because of his outstanding merits as an epic writer".
  • 1904: jointly to: José Echegaray y Eizaguirre (1832 – 1916) Spanish civil engineer, mathematician, statesman, and a leading Spanish dramatist, "in recognition of the numerous and brilliant compositions which, in an individual and original manner, have revived the great traditions of the Spanish drama".
  • 1903: Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson (1832 – 1910) Norwegian writer, "as a tribute to his noble, magnificent and versatile poetry, which has always been distinguished by both the freshness of its inspiration and the rare purity of its spirit".
  • 1902: Christian Mommsen (1817 – 1903) German historian and writer; his masterpiece - "The History of Rome", "the greatest living master of the art of historical writing, with special reference to his monumental work, A history of Rome".
  • 1901: Sully Prudhomme (1839 – 1907) French poet and essayist, "in special recognition of his poetic composition, which gives evidence of lofty idealism, artistic perfection and a rare combination of the qualities of both heart and intellect".


Inleiding & toelichting

NL: Deze project-pagina bundelt de namen van literatoren die een Nobel-prijs hebben mogen winnen. Onder andere met het oogmerk Geni-gebruikers te attenderen op de mogelijkheid dat deze personen deel uitmaken van hun stamboom. Jammer genoeg zijn enkele profielen door niet zo zorgvuldige geni-gebruikers nog niet goed in de totale stamboom terug te vinden. Op deze lijst -voorzover bekend- de levensjaartallen met een URL-verwijzing naar leuke, leerzamen e/o informatieve documentatie over de betreffende persoon op internet. Als daarin jaartallen nog ontbreken of fout vermeld zijn, bedenk het is een project-in-progress en voor stomme fouten maak ik graag mijn oprechte excuses. Zodra een profiel correct in de geni-stamboom voorkomt en aan deze project-pagina is gelinkt, kan hier worden volstaan met naams-vermelding, voorzien van informatieve internet--URL-koppeling en vindt u via het aangelinkte profiel meer familie-relatie-gegevens, natuurlijk voorzover de betreffende beheerders daar openbaarheid aan wensen te geven. Overigens geef ik er de voorkeur aan wanneer straks de betreffende laureaat e/o nazaten aangeven met welke internet-site men gekoppeld wenst te zijn op deze pagina.


NL: Voor zover mogelijk vindt U hier verwijzingen naar officiële, mooie of informatieve websites van of over de betreffende winnaars & winnaressen. Nazaten en gerelateerden zijn uitgenodigd de profielen van de betreffende personen hier te plaatsen, voorzover dat reeds overleden personen zijn. Wanneer de laureaat nog leeft, kan hij/zij als medewerker een bijdrage leveren aan het onder de aandacht brengen van deze prestigieuze prijs. 〮 De verantwoordelijkheid voor deze pagina berust bij een redactie-commissie onder voorzitterschap van het eerstgenoemde profiel onder de medewerkers van dit project. Inmiddels hebben enkele domini-curatores het heft in handen genomen en heb ik besloten me niet meer in het redactie-lokaal te tonen, maar nog wel positief bij te dragen...

  • -2011-06-15-10:35-jMu-aanvulling met levensjaartallen en verwijziging naar digitale documentatie elders welkom, bij voorkeur vooralsnog via discussie-in redactie