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Thread: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

  1. #581
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Hrabal78 View Post
    I would be happy if Murakami won - have six books signed/stamped by him - albeit I do not think it will happen this year, despite him being the "favorite"...perhaps in the future. I also have signed books by Adonis, Roth, Amos Oz, Tom Stoppard, Kundera, Munro, Ngugi wa Thiog'o, Eco, DeLillo, Oates, Doctorow, McEwan, Atwood, Angelou, Ishiguro, Malouf, Le Guin, Rushdie, Byatt, Gass, Ashbery, Ondaatje, Gluck, Banville. Realistically, I think that only a few people from my collection have any chance of winning the prize in the future, perhaps Adonis, Roth, Oz, Kundera, Munro and Thiog'o.
    Wow, you've got a lot of treasures there. Where were you able to meet all of these great authors?

  2. #582
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Davus View Post
    Miłosz, Kertesz, Pasternak. And probably few others I can't recall at the moment.
    But I would be extremely happy if Kundera won, though I doubt if it is still possible. He's 83 right now. It is rather doubtful if they waited so long because they didn't want to give him this award too early. :P

    I meant writers from the communist bloc that wrote mainly about life under communism. Other than Muller and Solzhenitsyn, there were no others. Most of Kertesz's lit concerns the Holocaust; although censors felt that Dr. Zhivago was critical of stalinism, I do not see the novel nor most of Pasternak's poetry I've read being politically charged; Milosz, Seifert, Bunin, Sholokhov, Brodsky were all from eastern Europe but none of them had particularly politically charged writing, critical of the regime/challenging the establishment. Szymborska to a certain extent did, eventually, but only two won whose writing was slap in the face of the political establishment, Sozhenitsyn and Muller. Hrabal (many of his works satirized life under communism), Kundera (The Joke), Mrozek (The Elephant, and countless plays), Hlasko, Ratushinskaya (Grey is the Color of Hope), Ginzburg (Journey Into the Whirlind), Shalamov (Kolyma Tales), Grossman (Life and Fate), Mandestam (Hope Against Hope), Bardach (Man is Wolf to Man) etc. etc. were some writers whose writings were highly critical, either overtly or in satirically, of the totalitarianism of the communist bloc. Of course (even though not from Eastern Europe) there was Mr. Blair, aka Orwell, who should have won the prize.

  3. #583

    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Hrabal78 View Post
    I meant writers from the communist bloc that wrote mainly about life under communism.
    If "mainly" is the word that interests us than Kundera also isn't a good example, is he? I've mentioned Pasternak due to "Doctor Zhivago", Miłosz mainly because of his "The Captive Mind" and Kertesz because of "Fiasco".

  4. #584
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Anybody read that Mo Yan guy? From what I read about him he seems to be a reasonable candidate. Cleanthess, you seem to be well read in Chinese literature. Would you mind to elaborate a bit on this writer? But maybe also Stevie can comment. From what is happening at Ladbrokes I would not be surprised if Mo Yan would be announced as the winner next week. Thanks guys.

  5. #585
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/pag...dont-bet-on-it

    I came across this article whilst reading a selection of August/Sep 2012 Nobel Prize for Literature web articles and references... and another article suggesting unfortunately that no USA winner should be awarded it, because the US fiction has become "too insular" -- this seemed harsh, so is this what we should be judging literature by these days or is this a Nobel criteria alone-- does it match up to the expectations of the "global and world collective hug" rather than its merits as a literature which comments either directly and in a limited way on the society which produces it? Is the Nobel bias against national literature that ignores issues outside of its own borders in short?

    Okay, that's my semi-controversial point for the day!
    Last edited by Hamlet; 02-Oct-2012 at 23:19.
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  6. #586
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by maidenhair View Post
    Anybody read that Mo Yan guy? From what I read about him he seems to be a reasonable candidate. Cleanthess, you seem to be well read in Chinese literature. Would you mind to elaborate a bit on this writer? But maybe also Stevie can comment. From what is happening at Ladbrokes I would not be surprised if Mo Yan would be announced as the winner next week. Thanks guys.
    "That Mo Yan guy"

    Very funny Maidenhair, 'hey, has anybody read that dude...', or if it was 70s America perhaps ... 'hey, man, who's that Mo Yan cat...'
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before." -Terence


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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by maidenhair View Post
    Anybody read that Mo Yan guy? From what I read about him he seems to be a reasonable candidate. Cleanthess, you seem to be well read in Chinese literature. Would you mind to elaborate a bit on this writer? But maybe also Stevie can comment. From what is happening at Ladbrokes I would not be surprised if Mo Yan would be announced as the winner next week. Thanks guys.
    Well, I've read Red Sorghum and Garlic Ballads. Going by these book, I can say he is very good.
    Jayan



  8. #588
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel del Real View Post
    Wow, you've got a lot of treasures there. Where were you able to meet all of these great authors?
    I was blessed to live in NYC and Washington, DC. NYC has the annual World Voices PEN International Writers Festival (really, one of the premier international book festivals in the world) and the Brooklyn Book Festival which bring some of the best authors around the world. It also has a number of prominent venues that host author events like the 92nd Street Y (saw Llosa, Heaney, Le Clezio, Pamuk, Muller, etc. there) and the Poets House. There are also a number of prominent book stores in NYC (i.e. Green Light Books) that have guest authors pretty much every day. DC has the National Book Festival, really one of the premier U.S. lit festivals which brings some of the best American authors/poets as well as a handful international authors (Llosa was there this year), a number of venues like the Shakespeare Library and the 6th & I Synaggogue, and book stores like Politics and Prose Books, all of which host a ton of literary events. I also managed to make it to the International Writers Festival in Toronto a few times. If you are into books, lit events, the east coast in the U.S. is the place to be (Miami also has a prominent book literary festival every year). You can go to a book/poetry reading/signing pretty much every day of the year. Incidentally, if you do collect signed books, some of these book stores, like Green Light Books and Politics and Prose can have an author sign a book for you at one of the events (the book he/she is promoting) and mail it to you. I know that Pamuk will be at Politics and Prose in November discussing his new novel, The Silent House. I already pre-ordered a signed copy from them. All you need to do is call. Not sure how it works with interantional shipping. I live in Los Angeles now, which is somewhat devoid of lit events.
    Last edited by Hrabal78; 02-Oct-2012 at 17:16.

  9. #589
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by maidenhair View Post
    Anybody read that Mo Yan guy? From what I read about him he seems to be a reasonable candidate.
    To Hamlet: please don't be surprised by that particular choice of words. Just like in late 19th. Century Russia writers could claim to have come from under Gogol's Cloak, in early 21th. Century America we all learned our craft at David Foster Wallace's considerate Lobster table.
    DFW showed us a way to write about serious things and discuss high art without sounding pretentious, précieux, prissy or poseur-like.
    It's a simple 3-part method, use the demotic to address your readers here and there, be humble when talking about yourself or your work and try to be funny. To those I'd add use pop culture references occasionally (things like The Big Lebowski, Anime, Bob Dylan, etc.)

    Quote Originally Posted by maidenhair View Post
    Cleanthess, you seem to be well read in Chinese literature. Would you mind to elaborate a bit on this writer?
    Appearances can be deceiving. But yes, I've read a couple of Mo Yan's books, my favorite being his 'Life and Death are wearing me down', and let me tell you, it is two tons of fun. Mo Yan has mastered all the post-modernist tricks. For example, when the protagonist of that novel is on his way back from hell, escorted by underworld minions, and passes by the bridge where he was executed in 1950, he remembers that Mo Yan (born 1955) wrote a story about that particular bridge: 'The Cure'; and then he proceeds to comment about how that story is just 'made up nonsense from the pen of a novelist who likes to do such things, and there is not an ounce of truth to it'.
    Here you can see DFW's 3-part approach: Mo Yan is using the demotic while discussing reincarnation and unjust executions, he's trying to be funny and he's being humble about his work.

    The whole book is filled with great moments and funny things, but the rhythm and pace are fast like in picaresque novels while the tone is a mixture of the post-modern and the traditional (as good as a Ji Xiaolan 'subtle observation from a thatched abode' about reincarnation, but taken to full novel length). The works it most reminded me of were Stanley Elkin's The Living End, Apuleius' Golden Ass and Carlo Collodi's Pinocchio. Before you dismiss me as a crank, let me quote you a few more lines from the novel: upon arriving at his house, the protagonist addresses his infernal companions,
    '-Thank you brothers for the difficulties encountered in seeing me home.' (...) 'Sinister smiles spread across their blue faces' (...) 'I opened my eyes to find that I was covered with a sticky liquid, lying near the birth canal of a female donkey. My god! Who'd have thought that I, Ximen Nao, a literate, well educated member of the gentry class, would be reborn as a white-hoofed donkey with floppy, tender lips!'
    To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you, and hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations, such is a pleasure beyond compare.
    Yoshida Kenko

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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    "It's a simple 3-part method..."

    If you read these words again, and reconsidered them carefully, in fact let's say you then reconsidered the entire passage or "thrust" of that passage, having typed those words, and esp. the addtion of the pop culture reference advice as a bolt-on to DFW's wise words then...

    Which of the following categories does this fit into:-

    ???
    Pretentious or poseur-like?

    ???
    or humble...

    What would you say...?
    Last edited by Hamlet; 02-Oct-2012 at 18:57.
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before." -Terence


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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    or, borrowing from that approach, we could utilize a quote from The Outlaw Josey Wales...

    "...don't piss down my back and tell me its raining".

    (I notice you've changed your signature btw?)
    Last edited by Hamlet; 02-Oct-2012 at 23:21.
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before." -Terence


  12. #592
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Hamlet View Post
    "That Mo Yan guy"

    Very funny Maidenhair, 'hey, has anybody read that dude...', or if it was 70s America perhaps ... 'hey, man, who's that Mo Yan cat...'
    This needs adjustment, it was intended to suggest that this informality was nice, amusing, informal, etc.... .. but if taken another way, could be taken the wrong way, a peril of the web...

    but then 'guy' as in 'who's this guy...' could be taken I guess as disparaging, or as a little bit off, but I didn't read it that way... as I know Maidenhair's posts, tone...
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before." -Terence


  13. #593

    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Cleanthess View Post
    To Hamlet: please don't be surprised by that particular choice of words. Just like in late 19th. Century Russia writers could claim to have come from under Gogol's Cloak, in early 21th. Century America we all learned our craft at David Foster Wallace's considerate Lobster table.
    DFW showed us a way to write about serious things and discuss high art without sounding pretentious, précieux, prissy or poseur-like.
    It's a simple 3-part method, use the demotic to address your readers here and there, be humble when talking about yourself or your work and try to be funny. To those I'd add use pop culture references occasionally (things like The Big Lebowski, Anime, Bob Dylan, etc.)


    Appearances can be deceiving. But yes, I've read a couple of Mo Yan's books, my favorite being his 'Life and Death are wearing me down', and let me tell you, it is two tons of fun. Mo Yan has mastered all the post-modernist tricks. For example, when the protagonist of that novel is on his way back from hell, escorted by underworld minions, and passes by the bridge where he was executed in 1950, he remembers that Mo Yan (born 1955) wrote a story about that particular bridge: 'The Cure'; and then he proceeds to comment about how that story is just 'made up nonsense from the pen of a novelist who likes to do such things, and there is not an ounce of truth to it'.
    Here you can see DFW's 3-part approach: Mo Yan is using the demotic while discussing reincarnation and unjust executions, he's trying to be funny and he's being humble about his work.

    The whole book is filled with great moments and funny things, but the rhythm and pace are fast like in picaresque novels while the tone is a mixture of the post-modern and the traditional (as good as a Ji Xiaolan 'subtle observation from a thatched abode' about reincarnation, but taken to full novel length). The works it most reminded me of were Stanley Elkin's The Living End, Apuleius' Golden Ass and Carlo Collodi's Pinocchio. Before you dismiss me as a crank, let me quote you a few more lines from the novel: upon arriving at his house, the protagonist addresses his infernal companions,
    '-Thank you brothers for the difficulties encountered in seeing me home.' (...) 'Sinister smiles spread across their blue faces' (...) 'I opened my eyes to find that I was covered with a sticky liquid, lying near the birth canal of a female donkey. My god! Who'd have thought that I, Ximen Nao, a literate, well educated member of the gentry class, would be reborn as a white-hoofed donkey with floppy, tender lips!'
    Um, even if you like his writing, David Foster Wallace was probably one of the most pretentious and poseur-like people on the planet.

  14. #594
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by adaorardor View Post
    Um, even if you like his writing, David Foster Wallace was probably one of the most pretentious and poseur-like people on the planet.
    Which is why all the self-admitted poseurs (like yours truly) love him.
    To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you, and hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations, such is a pleasure beyond compare.
    Yoshida Kenko

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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Hamlet View Post
    "It's a simple 3-part method..."

    If you read these words again, and reconsidered them carefully, in fact let's say you then reconsidered the entire passage or "thrust" of that passage, having typed those words, and esp. the addtion of the pop culture reference advice as a bolt-on to DFW's wise words then...

    Which of the following categories does this fit into:-

    ???
    Pretentious or poseur-like?

    ???
    or humble...

    What would you say...?
    Hamlet, you fully understood my intent. I'm grateful to have someone get the (rather poor) joke. As for the change of signature, it seemed to be scaring away Nordic trolls, and I miss a particular one to no end. So, I decided to take advantage of the opportunity and come clean about where I got my nick from, and to clarify my approach to the fun debates we occasionally encounter in the Forum.

    Back on topic, the odds for Murakami are now at 4 to 1, down from 5 to 1, with Mo Yan running a close second at 8 to 1.
    To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you, and hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations, such is a pleasure beyond compare.
    Yoshida Kenko

  16. #596
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Does anyone have any thoughts on Ashbery? I see his name pop up on Landbrokes. I do like Ashbery but, if I were to award it to an American poet, I would put other (US) poets over Ashbery, namely W.S. Merwin, and maybe Philip Levine. Then again, that is personaly preference. I do not see an American poet winning it anytime soon.

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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Cleanthess View Post
    Hamlet, you fully understood my intent. I'm grateful to have someone get the (rather poor) joke. As for the change of signature, it seemed to be scaring away Nordic trolls, and I miss a particular one to no end. So, I decided to take advantage of the opportunity and come clean about where I got my nick from, and to clarify my approach to the fun debates we occasionally encounter in the Forum.

    Back on topic, the odds for Murakami are now at 4 to 1, down from 5 to 1, with Mo Yan running a close second at 8 to 1.

    I enjoyed a number of Murakami's books but I wonder if he will actually ever win the prize. Will he be a victim of his own popularity? Also, in recent years, the "idealism" in Nobel's criteria for the prize seems to have come to mean idealism championing human rights on a broad scale, or some other grand/universal theme. I am not sure if Murakami's writing really fits the mold. Hey, I would love to see him win it (I really enjoyed what I have read from him) but I wonder if, like Rushdie, he may end up sitting on the side lines in perpetuity.
    Last edited by Hrabal78; 02-Oct-2012 at 19:57.

  18. #598
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Hamlet View Post
    but I didn't read it that way... as I know Maidenhair's posts, tone...
    yes, and you were right to not read it that way, young prince of Denmark

    thanks to you, Cleanthess, half Gaul half stoic Greek, for your undeceiving and informative comments, I admire your literacy and your lingustic vocation.

  19. #599
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by maidenhair View Post


    yes, and you were right to not read it that way, young prince of Denmark



    Yes, it's not always easy on a website such as this one, with we folks scattered so broadly...
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    Default Re: Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 Speculation

    Quote Originally Posted by Cleanthess View Post
    Hamlet, you fully understood my intent. I'm grateful to have someone get the (rather poor) joke. As for the change of signature, it seemed to be scaring away Nordic trolls, and I miss a particular one to no end. So, I decided to take advantage of the opportunity and come clean about where I got my nick from, and to clarify my approach to the fun debates we occasionally encounter in the Forum.

    Back on topic, the odds for Murakami are now at 4 to 1, down from 5 to 1, with Mo Yan running a close second at 8 to 1.
    Not so quickly...


    For example, with Eric the Viking, it may be best, and this is just a suggestion, to simply say "Eric, I miss your posts and please return?"

    I don't actually enjoy debates where if an Eric doesn't like the pov, or agree, he becomes quickly annoyed and then resorts to personal insults, the site then slips into an undemocratic forum... and sometimes it feels like little more than a bullhorn for certain viewpoints... or literatures...


    You don't have to clarify debates, when you appended 'come back Eric' to a number of your posts when our Nordic friend left the time before last, it could have been read as insincere, and baiting him, to me, it wasn't, it was just fun, but to an Eric, it may have seemed very confrontational.

    And now that you 'miss a particular one no end' you're leaving the poor fellow confused. Maidenhair may get you, I may get you... but Vikings are another kettle of fish.


    But PLEASE beware, or is that be aware, of mentioning Martin Amis whatever you decide to do, that seems to always provoke a nasty little reaction.
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before." -Terence


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