STOCKHOLM – The Nobel Prize in literature will be announced Thursday, with the new laureate, or laureates, joining an illustrious list of past winners that ranges from Toni Morrison to Ernest Hemingway and Jean-Paul Sartre — who turned down the prize in 1964.
This year’s winner or winners will be known at 1 p.m. (1100 GMT), assuming there is no slip-up similar to Wednesday, when a press release divulging the names of the three chemistry laureates was sent to Swedish media hours before the official press event to unveil the winners.
Last year, French author Annie Ernaux won the prize for what the prize-giving Swedish Academy called “the courage and clinical acuity” of books rooted in her small-town background in the Normandy region of northwest France.
Ernaux was just the 17th woman among the 119 Nobel literature laureates. The literature prize has long faced criticism that it is too focused on European and North American writers, as well as too male-dominated.
On Wednesday, the chemistry prize was awarded to Moungi Bawendi of MIT, Louis Brus of Columbia University, and Alexei Ekimov of Nanocrystals Technology Inc. They were honored for their work with tiny particles called quantum dots — tiny particles that can release very bright colored light and whose applications in everyday life include electronics and medical imaging.
Earlier this week, Hungarian-American Katalin Karikó and American Drew Weissman won the Nobel Prize in medicine on Monday for discoveries that enabled the creation of mRNA vaccines against COVID-19.
On Tuesday, the physics prize went to French-Swedish physicist Anne L’Huillier, French scientist Pierre Agostini and Hungarian-born Ferenc Krausz for producing the first split-second glimpse into the super-fast world of spinning electrons.
The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded Friday and the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences ends the awards season on Monday.
The Nobel Prizes carry a cash award of 11 million Swedish kronor ($1 million) from a bequest left by the prize’s creator, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel. Winners also receive an 18-carat gold medal and diploma when they collect their Nobel Prizes at the award ceremonies in December.
Corder reported from The Hague, Netherlands.
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