The Nobel Prize for Literature is ready to be awarded on Thursday. Twice.
The Handmaid’s Story creator Margaret Atwood, fellow Canadian Anne Carson and Russian novelist Lyudmila Ulitskaya are among the many names considered in competition for the prizes this yr.
Two winners are set to be named as a result of the prize was not awarded in 2018.
The Swedish Academy, which oversees the celebrated award, suspended it to make adjustments to its processes after it was engulfed in a sexual assault scandal.
Jean-Claude Arnault, the husband of Academy member Katarina Frostenson, was sentenced to 2 years in jail in October after being convicted of rape.
Frostenson stepped down, and the occasions sparked a disaster within the organisation involving allegations of battle of curiosity and the leaking of Nobel winners’ names. All of it resulted in “diminished public confidence within the Academy”, in accordance with the awards physique.
“Our status is every little thing,” said Lars Heikensten, executive director of the Nobel Foundation. “Clearly, you will need to keep away from this type of state of affairs we’ve been in and naturally it can’t be repeated.”
The Academy has additionally made adjustments to its panel, bringing in a number of new members since final yr. The physique will now additionally enable its members to resign, and now not tolerate members who’ve been topic to conflicts of curiosity or felony investigations.
How do you win the Nobel Prize for Literature?
As Alfred Nobel put it in his will, the prize is awarded to the creator who’s deemed to have written “essentially the most excellent work in a great course”.
Sara Danius, everlasting secretary of the Swedish Academy, has said: “The Nobel Prize in Literature is awarded to somebody who has carried out excellent work in an idealistic course that provides the best profit to humankind. Nationality is expressly unimportant.”
The winner is set by members of the Swedish Academy, however their decision-making course of is stored secret for 50 years.
Academy member Anders Olsson mentioned they seemed for a extra numerous shortlist this yr and had been shifting away from a extra “male-oriented” and “Eurocentric perspective of literature”.
Different names considered in competition embody Guadeloupian creator Maryse Condé – who received an alternate award arrange final yr – plus Poland’s Olga Tokarczuk and the Kenyan Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o.
Earlier winners embody Bob Dylan (2016), Alice Munro (2013), Orhan Pamuk (2006), Toni Morrison (2003) and Gabriel García Márquez (1982).
The profitable author receives 9 million Swedish kronor (£740,000), in addition to a medal and a diploma.
The prize was launched in 1901. There are seven years throughout which it has not been awarded since then, however by no means beforehand due to a scandal.
It was not given out throughout World Conflict One, and was additionally missed throughout 4 years of World Conflict Two.