The American singer- songwriter, Bob Dylan has been awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature for 2016 for “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”
According to CNN, Sara Danius, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, has said about the 75 year old Dylan , “is a great poet in the English-speaking tradition. She has also drawn parallels between the work of the ancient Greek poets and his.
“If you look back, far back, 2,500 years or so, you discover Homer and Sappho and they wrote poetic texts that were meant to be listened to, that were meant to be performed, often with instruments — and it’s the same way with Bob Dylan,” said Sara Danius.
During the tempestuous 1960’s, Bob Dylan’s lyrics and music reached out to the people of that generation in order to help and motivate the ‘Civil Rights Movement’. Even today his music penetrates us through folk,rock and pop.
Danius even recommended Dylan’s “Blonde on Blonde” the 1966 album, suggesting that it had in it, “many examples of his brilliant way of rhyming and putting together refrains and his pictorial thinking.”
On October 6, New Republic had published an article quoting, “Who Will Win the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature? Not Bob Dylan, that’s for sure.”
According to New York Times, eminent literary writers like Salman Rushdie, Joyce Carol Oates and Stephen King have celebrated Bob Dylan’s achievements and called him “the brilliant inheritor of the bardic tradition,”
Whereas other writers have questioned the level of song writing to literature and pointed to the decision as being misguided. In a statement the Nobel Committee has said that Bob Dylan’s words have been republished repeatedly and that he has “recorded a large number of albums revolving around topics like the social conditions of man, religion, politics and love”and also added, “As an artist, he is strikingly versatile; he has been active as painter, actor and scriptwriter,” to shun the critics.
Dylan was born in 1941, in Robert Allen Zimmerman in Duluth, Minnesota. His first album entitled “Bob Dylan” came out in 1962 and consisted of old folk songs covered by him. In 1963, his second album “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan,” came out which had in it the famous song “blowing in the wind” and other original songs.
With this Nobel Prize win Dylan becomes the 108th name to have won this prestigious literary award, and also the first American since the author Toni Morrison who had won it in 1993.