Tuesday, 19 November, 2019

Peter Handke wins 2019 award, Olga Tokarczuk 2018

Two Nobel literature prizes to be awarded after sexual assault scandal Olga Tokarczuk, Peter Handke win Nobel Prize in Literature
Lora Ball | 10 October, 2019, 16:52

Tokarczuk was named the victor of last year's prize, while the 2019 award went to Handke. Together with the play Publikumsbeschimpfung (Offending the Audience, 1969), he certainly set his mark on the literary scene.

Before Olga, only 14 women had won the Nobel Prize in Literature since 1901, when the prize was awarded for the first time.

Tokarczuk won for works that explore the "crossing of boundaries as a form of life", the academy said Thursday. He's written many works in different genres over the 50 years since his debut novel Die Hornissen.

FILE - In this March 15, 2017 photo Polish author Olga Tokarczuk attends a lection in Cologne, Germany.

The Academy has been at pains to restore its reputation ever since, introducing changes such as appointing new "external" members to help select the laureates, however, the Nobel Foundation has said more needs to be done to improve transparency.

Austrian author and playwright Peter Handke has been awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature for 2019, with 2018's postponed award going to Polish writer Olga Tokarczuk.

"Work on the selection of a laureate is at an advanced stage and will continue as usual in the months ahead but the Academy needs time to regain its full complement, engage a larger number of active members and regain confidence in its work, before the next Literature Prize victor is declared", it had said in May past year. Arnault allegedly also leaked the name of Nobel Prize literature winners seven times.

Other institutions in Sweden and Norway were given the task to find winners for the other Nobel Prizes.

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The members hold a vote in October to choose the victor, and the laureate must obtain more than half of the votes cast.

Last years award was not handed out due to a protracted scandal involving allegations of sexual abuse and financial misconduct.

The last Pole to win the Nobel literature prize was poet Wislawa Szymborska in 1996.

This year's awards come with a 9-million kronor (AUD$1.34bn) cash award to be shared a gold medal and a diploma. The laureates receive them at an elegant ceremony in Stockholm on December 10 the anniversary of Nobel's death in 1896 together with five other Nobel winners.

The chemistry prize went Wednesday to three scientists for their work leading to the development of lithium-ion batteries.

Handke's alignment with Milosevic has been so controversial that in 2006, his nomination for the 50,000 euro Heinrich Heine Prize was ultimately withdrawn; likewise, when Handke was awarded the Ibsen Prize in Oslo in 2014, protesters described him as a fascist and Handke ultimately didn't accept the prize money, either.

So far, nine Nobel prizes have been awarded this week and all the laureates are men.

The decision did not affect the other Nobel prizes, which are awarded separately.

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