He is the first American to win the prize after Toni Morrison in 1993.
The 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded to American singer-songwriter, Bob Dylan, for "having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition." This was announced yesterday, October 13, 2016 by the Permanent Secretary of the Swedish Academy committee that annually decides the recipient of the Nobel Prize, Sara Danius.
Bob Dylan is the 259th American to have won a Nobel, across all disciplines, and the first to win the literature prize since 1993. He is the ninth American to gain the literary laurel since the medals were founded in 1901. Regarded as the voice of a generation for his influential songs from the 1960s onwards, Bob Dylan won the Nobel Prize for Literature in a surprise decision that gave a singer-songwriter one of the world’s most prestigious cultural awards.
His songs such as “Blowin’ in the Wind,” “Masters of War,” “A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall,” “The Times They Are a-Changin,” “Subterranean Homesick Blues” and “Like a Rolling Stone” captured a spirit of rebellion, dissent and independence. “Dylan has the status of an icon. His influence on contemporary music is profound,” the Swedish Academy said as they awarded him the 8 million Swedish crown ($930,000) prize. In an interview following the announcement, Danius elaborated on the Swedish Academy's decision: "He is a great poet in the English-speaking tradition, and he is a wonderful sampler…," Danius explained. "For 54 years now, he has been at it and reinventing himself, constantly creating a new identity,” he added.
More than 50 years on, Dylan is still writing songs and is often on tour. The 75-year-old artist will receive his award in Stockholm, Sweden, on December 10, 2016. Literature was the last of this year’s Nobel prizes to be awarded. The prize is named after dynamite inventor, Alfred Nobel and has been awarded since 1901 for achievements in science, literature and peace, in accordance with his will.