Bob Dylan Awarded Nobel Prize For Literature 2016

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Scepticalscribe, Oct 13, 2016.

  1. Scepticalscribe, Oct 13, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2016

    Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #1
    Wow. Just wow.

    This morning, the Nobel committee announced that they are awarding the 2016 Nobel Prize for Literature to Bob Dylan "for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition."

    Wonderful news (though, if I am completely honest, my preferences lie with Leonard Cohen over Bob Dylan).

    Never mind. He is a fantastic artist, and representative of a very specific - and extraordinarily rich and varied - art form, the 'American song tradition'.

    Great to see this art form - one that is accessible to all, and has allowed the poor as well as the rich to express themselves - and one that has been used to explore in extraordinary depth the human condition, and describe and explore life as it is often lived in those poorer, darker, meaner places, internally, geographically and socially - recognised and saluted by the Nobel Committee.

    And great to see a true artist - one who has influenced his art form every bit as much as he has influenced his society - also receive this recognition.

    Bravo, Bob Dylan (and the Nobel Committee). Well done and congratulations.
     
  2. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

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    #2
    Pretty ****ing awesome.

    Now all we need is Keith Richards to win the Nobel Prize for chemistry. :D
     
  3. aaronvan Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #3
    Why not Woody Allen or Tracey Emin?

    Somewhere, Hemingway and Steinbeck are doubled over laughing.
     
  4. Scepticalscribe thread starter Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #4
    Because neither are giants, artistically.

    Artistically, Woody Allen ceased to be of relevance decades ago, and, while he was clever (and yes, funny), I would argue that his work lacks an epic - or empathetic - quality.

    Candidly, I very much doubt that either Hemingway - or Steinbeck - had much by way of a sense of humour (and yes, I have read their entire body of works).
     
  5. JamesMike macrumors demi-god

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  6. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    #6
    I would agree with you that Leonard Cohen would be my preference for the award but of course not in "American song traditon" being that he was Canadian. I guess I am a bit jaded in that I find that Dylan's influences were greater than the sum of Dylan's works which were strong only because of the particular era they were published. I'll simply salute him and say congratz.
     
  7. aaronvan Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #7
    The best that can be said about this is at least Bob Dylan isn’t a lying fabulist like Rigoberta Menchú and he is actually “read” outside of Modern Language Association conventions and English Department faculty wine & cheese parties. On the other hand, “Don't Follow Leaders, Watch Your Parking Meters” isn’t exactly timeless prose.

    The Nobel Prize for Literature has been an unserious political award for decades and I supposed this is the Nobel Committee’s way to expiate their lingering embarrassment for giving Obama the Peace Prize. Until Cormac McCarthy and Philip Roth both receive the Nobel Prize for Literature, the award remains a political statement.

    I agree with @Scepticalscribe that Woody Allen is no longer relevant. However, he was relevant until at least Annie Hall (1977) and Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989) was a powerful study of human guilt, greed, and repentance. On the other hand, Bob Dylan hasn’t been relevant since 1966.
     
  8. copykris macrumors 6502a

    copykris

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    #8
    kudos, Nobel Prize Committee (also: long overdue)
     
  9. thewitt macrumors 68020

    thewitt

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    #9
    The Nobel Prize committed are completely nuts, and thus seals the deal. They have been awarding complete nonsense for the last two decades, and have now lost all credibility as an organization. Very sad.
     
  10. aaronvan Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #10
    The Nobel Committee trying to stay relevant by appealing to an American audience. They can't keep awarding the prize to writers that nobody has ever heard of, much less read.
     
  11. IronWaffle macrumors 6502

    IronWaffle

    #11
    I'm a big fan of both Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen (not to mention John Prine, whom I consider to on almost the same plane) and could argue which, if either, "deserves" this canonization. For his part, Mr. Cohen said this of Dylan's new honorific in a recent interview promoting his own forthcoming album, You Want It Darker:
    Thank you, @Scepticalscribe for starting this thread. Not sure how it escaped my attention so long.
     
  12. thewitt macrumors 68020

    thewitt

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    #12
    How about Steven King, John Steinbeck, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, J.D. Salinger, Kurt Vonnegut, William Faulkner, Tennessee Williams, John Updike, Truman Capote, Sinclair Lewis, Arthur Miller just to name a few.

    Bob Dylan? Nobel Prize for Literature? They must have taken his lyrics to heart, and "everybody must get stoned," before voting...
     
  13. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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    #13
    Everyone's reactions don't surprise me in the slightest. However, this strikes me as a perfectly reasonable, if unprecedented, choice.
     
  14. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    #14
    Cohen appears to be gracious but the speed at which one writes a song or a novel or creates an image (art) etc. is not really a measure of anything other than speed. I'll just say Dylan's stardom is very much tied to his influences and being in the right place at the right time. The other creative minds listed in other posts here seem to be (for me) a better choice. Again, I'll just say congratz as its a done deal and better to be positive.
     
  15. IronWaffle macrumors 6502

    IronWaffle

    #15
    In the spirit of the thread I'm going to simply pass along a few responses from artists who've cited Dylan as a major influence.

    Here's Tom Waits:

    And a timely post from Bruce Springsteen (and a relevant passage from his new own autobiography):

    Also, here's a thoughtful examination (from Paste magazine article dated last month) as to whether or not Dylan might reasonably qualify for the prize. Enough pro and con to satisfy zealots on both sides.
     
  16. copykris macrumors 6502a

    copykris

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    #16
    stopped reading at Stephen King (whose name you can't even spell correctly, but okay)

    thanks for the chuckle
     
  17. MarkusL macrumors 6502

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    #17
    Hemingway, Faulkner and Steinbeck already won it. Is the Academy supposed to award it to them again? Did they write any new great books last year?
    --- Post Merged, Oct 17, 2016 ---
    It's not the same committee. The money comes from the same place but each prize is awarded by a separate committee. The peace prize is awarded by a committee appointed by the Norwegian parliament, and the other prizes are awarded by various scientific and cultural organizations in Sweden.
     
  18. IronWaffle, Oct 17, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2016

    IronWaffle macrumors 6502

    IronWaffle

    #18
    Suzanne Vega, Vashti Bunyan and several other female artists chime in with their thoughts. Again, just sharing.

    For me, this is the kind of ancillary benefit to such awards that I like best: artists I'm unfamiliar with are brought to my attention through a shared interest. Often they are very different and it widens my own taste and takes me in seemingly unrelated directions.

    In some cases, this attention has also gotten me to either re-evaluate an artist that I didn't care for (and didn't necessarily think they were award-worthy) or made me pay attention to an artist I've neglected.
     
  19. Scepticalscribe thread starter Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #19
    Fantastic response to a historically illiterate - and an actually borderline - illiterate - post. You saved me the trouble of composing a response. My grateful thanks.

    And, my grateful thanks to you, as well, for explaining the difference between two countries, Norway and Sweden, and - more pertinently - for taking the time and trouble to explain the differences between how the respective bodies both in Norway (where the parliament appoints a committee that awards the Peace Prize) and in Sweden - where various bodies, scientific and cultural bodies - academy of sciences and so on - decide who should be awarded with the other Nobel Prizes.
     
  20. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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    #20
    Aww shucks, it was really fun there for a bit, wallowing in ignorance. And you had to take that away.
     
  21. vkd macrumors 6502a

    vkd

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    #21
    Look out kid because it's something that you did, kid.
     
  22. Scepticalscribe thread starter Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #22
    This post is incomprehensible, but, that, I suppose, is the point.

    Back on topic, while I applaud the decision to award the Nobel Prize for Literature to Bob Dylan, I must say that I do think his (lack of) response thus far to have been rather lacking in grace.
     
  23. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

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    #23

    Based on his latest tweet, I'd give King the prize.

    @StephenKing - My newest horror story: Once upon a time there was a man named Donald Trump, and he ran for president. Some people wanted him to win.
     
  24. JamesMike macrumors demi-god

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    #24
    I agree if he does not want the award he at least should say so.
     
  25. MarkusL macrumors 6502

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    #25
    Still, the Swedish Academy gave him the prize for his poetic genius, not for his ability to react gracefully to awards. I'm sure the members of the Academy checked his Wikipedia article before making their decision.
    Today, it must be expected that an old protest singer may need some time to decide how to react to being invited to a banquet with the King. Apart from the public disappointment of one member, the Academy is staying calm. In the words of the Academy, but my translation:
     

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