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Hungarians in Race for Nobel Prize in Literature

Fanni Kaszás 2019.10.07.

Two Hungarian writers, Péter Nádas and László Krasznahorkai, have been among the favorites to win the Nobel Prize for Literature for years. Last year, no literary Nobel Prize was awarded so this year the spokesman for the Swedish Academy will announce two names at 1pm on Thursday out of the 210 writers nominated for the Nobel.

The Nobel Prize for Literature has traditionally been decided by members of the Swedish Academy. Like last year, the Academy postponed the award ceremony due to a sexual harassment and information leak scandal and no prize was handed out. They have decided that this year they will announce the names of last year’s and this year’s Nobel nominees.

According to years of experience, bookmakers bet that the writer or poet who eventually receives the prize – and the 10 million tax-free Swedish krona – is among the group of the first favorites, but generally is not the absolute favorite.

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For years, Murakami Haruki, Philip Roth, and Ngugi Wa Thiong’o, have always been in the top ten. But two Hungarians, Péter Nádas and László Krasznahorkai also have good odds with bookmakers, so it is possible that this year, after Imre Kertész’s Nobel Prize in 2002, another Hungarian may return home with the Nobel for literature.

In 2016, to the surprise of many, musician Bob Dylan won, while in 2017 the award went to Japanese Kazuo Ishiguro. Since last year, several members and leaders of the academy have resigned due to the sexual harassment scandals, new members have been added to the board, and the rules of the Academy have also been revised.

featured photo: László Krasznahorkai Facebook