Polish author Olga Tokarczuk – who won the 2018 Man Booker International prize for her novel Flights – was awarded with Nobel prize in Literature for the year 2018, a year late. She was honoured the prestigious award “for a narrative imagination that with encyclopedic passion represents the crossing of boundaries as a form of life.”
For the first time since 1949, unlike other Nobel awards which are presented to individuals annually, the Nobel in Literature was cancelled last year and hence presented this year.
The Swedish Academy was forced to announce the postponement of the Nobel Prize for Literature in May 2018 after 18 women made sexual assault allegations against French photographer Jean-Claude Arnault, husband of member Katarina Frostenson.
Arnault was accused of sexual harassment and physical abuse over a period of more than 20 years, in France and Sweden and including at properties owned by the academy.
Arnault denied all of the charges against him – which date back as far as 1996 – and, following an investigation by Swedish prosecutors, all but one was dropped due to a lack of evidence. He was found guilty of raping a woman in a Stockholm apartment by a Swedish court on Monday and sentenced to two years in prison.
While Olga Tokarczuk was awarded for 2018, the 2019 Nobel prize in literature was awarded to the Austrian author Peter Handke “for an influential work that with linguistic ingenuity has explored the periphery and the specificity of human experience.”
Each winner will receive over $910,000 in prize money and the international acclaim accompanying recognition as a Nobel Laureate.