ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Latest on the awarding of the Nobel Prize in literature to American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan (all times local):
The governor of Bob Dylan’s home state says he is pleased that Minnesota native Dylan has won this year’s Nobel Prize for literature.
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton calls the award “fantastic” and says he will issue a proclamation honouring Dylan, who was born in Duluth and grew up in Hibbing.
In Duluth, Mayor Emily Larson says she’s “super excited” and plans to issue a proclamation in honour of both Dylan’s prize and a local all-Dylan radio show on FM.
Duluth honours Dylan with an annual Dylan Fest every spring.
The Vatican newspaper says some of Bob Dylan’s lyrics are beautiful, the work of a true artist who influenced entire generations. But it says he’s just a songwriter and that “real” writers who know what it takes to produce a book might not be happy with this year’s choice for the Nobel Prize in Literature.
L’Osservatore Romano, which frequently chimes in on pop culture, wrote a brief article about Thursday’s award.
It said the Nobel committee certainly recognized Dylan’s “great talent.” But it said many of the artists inspired by Dylan’s beautiful songs subsequently wrote “truly boring” lyrics. And it said the Nobel decision certainly “must not have pleased real writers, such as potential winners Don De Lillo, Philip Roth or Haruki Murakami, who know the enormous work that goes into writing a novel.”
The paper did praise Dylan for having steered clear of all the trappings of celebrity culture, saying he followed “an invitation to not conform, and think with his own mind.”
U.S. President Barack Obama has offered his congratulations to Bob Dylan for being awarded the Nobel Prize in literature.
Tweeting from his official POTUS account, Obama said: “Congratulations to one of my favourite poets, Bob Dylan, on a well-deserved Nobel.”
British singer-songwriter singer Billy Bragg approved of the awarding of the Nobel Prize in literature to Bob Dylan, quoting a line from the song “Mr. Tambourine Man” — “Yes, to dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free.”
“For this alone Bob Dylan deserves the Nobel Prize,” Bragg tweeted.
Mick Hucknall, lead singer of the band Simply Red, praised Dylan as “greatest living poet.” He added on Twitter that “There is no musical artist on this earth that merits a #NobelPrize more than Bob Dylan. His poetry and melody changed society.”
American writer Joyce Carol Oates applauded the Nobel Prize awarding to Bob Dylan, while taking the opportunity to attack U.S. Presidential candidate Donald Trump, whom she refused to name in full.
“Bob Dylan a very welcome respite/interregnum interrupting cascade of T(asterisk)(asterisk)(asterisk)p grotesquerie,” she tweeted. “The Dylan of 1960s would’ve been scathing of T(asterisk)(asterisk)(asterisk)p.”
British fantasy writer Philip Pullman also welcomed the honouring of Dylan, saying he hoped that as a result the Nobel committee might in the future look at a wider range of writing.
“One result might be to open the prize to genre fiction as well as the ‘literary’ sort,” he said on Twitter.
Bob Dylan’s Nobel recognition is “vindication” for Gordon Ball, an English professor who nominated the singer-songwriter for the award 15 years in a row beginning in 1996. Ball, who specializes in American literature and the Beat Generation, retired from Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Virginia, two years ago and now teaches at Washington and Lee University.
“There’s an enormous, almost a kind of unbelievability, that it finally happened,” Ball said by telephone early Thursday. “People thought I was crazy or really out of line” to suggest that Dylan should be awarded such a prize. But he notes that the committee has recognized a “wide latitude in terms of medium,” such as Winston Churchill’s oratory, and there’s a compelling argument that Dylan has had a good effect on the world.
With songs like “Blowin’ in the Wind” on behalf of the civil rights movement, Dylan made a difference, Ball said.
“In short, he has changed the world for the better, I feel,” he said.
British Indian novelist Salman Rushdie, often mentioned as a possible Nobel literature prize contender, has lauded the choice to honour singer-songwriter Bob Dylan with this year’s award.
“From Orpheus to Faiz, song & poetry have been closely linked. Dylan is the brilliant inheritor of the bardic tradition. Great choice,” Rushdie tweeted.
Scottish novelist Irvine Welsh reacted angrily to the awarding of the Nobel Prize for literature to Bob Dylan, embarking on a series of exchanges on Twitter.
“I’m a Dylan fan, but this is an ill conceived nostalgia award wrenched from the rancid prostates of senile, gibbering hippies,” the “Trainspotting” author wrote.
He continued: “If you’re a ‘music’ fan, look it up in the dictionary. Then ‘literature’. Then compare and contrast.”
He also begged to know if writer Don De Lillo had been inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll hall of fame yet.
Chilean President Michelle Bachelet was one of the first to congratulate Bob Dylan on being awarded the Nobel Prize in literature.
“What a joy that Bob Dylan got the Nobel for literature. Many fond memories from my adolescence are associated with his music,” she tweeted.
Bob Dylan was named the winner of the 2016 Nobel Prize in literature Thursday in a stunning announcement that for the first time bestowed the prestigious award to someone primarily seen as a musician.
The Swedish Academy cited the American musician for “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”
Dylan had been mentioned in the Nobel speculation for years, but few experts expected the academy to extend the prestigious award to a genre such as popular music.
The literature award was the last of this year’s Nobel Prizes to be announced. The six awards will be handed out on Dec. 10, the anniversary of prize founder Alfred Nobel’s death in 1896.