Tanzanian-born novelist Abdulrajak Gurnah, whose work touches colonialism and refugee life, won the Nobel Literature Prize on Thursday, the Swedish Academy said.
Gurna, who grew up on the island of Zanzibar but came to England as a refugee in the late 1960s, was honored “for his uncompromising and compassionate admission of the effects of colonialism and the refugee’s fate into the gap between cultures” to be done. continent,” the Swedish Academy said.
Gurnaah has published 10 novels and several short stories.
He is best known for his 1994 novel “Paradise”, set in colonial East Africa during World War I, which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Fiction.
The theme of refugee disruption runs throughout his work.
Born in 1948, Gurna began writing in England at the age of 21. Although Swahili was his first language, English became his literary device.
The Nobel Prize comes with a medal and a prize money of 10 million Swedish kronor (approximately 980,000 euros, $1.1 million).
Last year, the award was received by American poet Lewis Gluck.
Prior to Thursday’s announcement, Nobel watchers suggested the Swedish Academy could approve an author from Asia or Africa, following a pledge to make the prize more diverse.
It has mainly crowned Western nations in its 120 years of existence.
Of the 118 literary prize winners since the first Nobel was awarded in 1901, 95 – or more than 80 percent – are European or North American.
Gurnah would normally have received the Nobel from King Carl XVI Gustaf at a ceremonial ceremony in Stockholm on 10 December, the anniversary of the 1896 death of the scientist Alfred Nobel, who created the awards in his last will and testament.
But the in-person ceremony has been canceled for the second straight year because of the pandemic and replaced with a televised ceremony showing awardees receiving awards in their home countries.
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