The Samovar


Nobel Prize winning literature meme
August 11, 2007, 1:55 am
Filed under: Frivolity | Tags: ,

Normally I hate memes, but since I actually invented this one myself to do with friends, why not put it on the blog? The meme is simply to go through the list of Nobel Prize for Literature winning authors and mark which ones you have or haven’t read, and tot up your score.

The rule for prose is simple: one book is enough. For playwrights, having read or seen one play is enough. For poetry, use your own judgement. Do you deserve to count them or not?

My score was a pitiful 19/103.

  • 2006 – Orhan Pamuk
  • 2005 – Harold Pinter
  • 2004 – Elfriede Jelinek
  • 2003 – J. M. Coetzee
  • 2002 – Imre Kertész
  • 2001 – V. S. Naipaul
  • 2000 – Gao Xingjian
  • 1999 – Günter Grass
  • 1998 – José Saramago
  • 1997 – Dario Fo
  • 1996 – Wislawa Szymborska
  • 1995 – Seamus Heaney
  • 1994 – Kenzaburo Oe
  • 1993 – Toni Morrison
  • 1992 – Derek Walcott
  • 1991 – Nadine Gordimer
  • 1990 – Octavio Paz
  • 1989 – Camilo José Cela
  • 1988 – Naguib Mahfouz
  • 1987 – Joseph Brodsky
  • 1986 – Wole Soyinka
  • 1985 – Claude Simon
  • 1984 – Jaroslav Seifert
  • 1983 – William Golding
  • 1982 – Gabriel García Márquez
  • 1981 – Elias Canetti
  • 1980 – Czeslaw Milosz
  • 1979 – Odysseus Elytis
  • 1978 – Isaac Bashevis Singer
  • 1977 – Vicente Aleixandre
  • 1976 – Saul Bellow
  • 1975 – Eugenio Montale
  • 1974 – Eyvind Johnson
  • 1974 – Harry Martinson
  • 1973 – Patrick White
  • 1972 – Heinrich Böll
  • 1971 – Pablo Neruda
  • 1970 – Alexandr Solzhenitsyn
  • 1969 – Samuel Beckett
  • 1968 – Yasunari Kawabata
  • 1967 – Miguel Angel Asturias
  • 1966 – Shmuel Agnon
  • 1966 – Nelly Sachs
  • 1965 – Mikhail Sholokhov
  • 1964 – Jean-Paul Sartre
  • 1963 – Giorgos Seferis
  • 1962 – John Steinbeck
  • 1961 – Ivo Andric
  • 1960 – Saint-John Perse
  • 1959 – Salvatore Quasimodo
  • 1958 – Boris Pasternak
  • 1957 – Albert Camus
  • 1956 – Juan Ramón Jiménez
  • 1955 – Halldór Laxness
  • 1954 – Ernest Hemingway
  • 1953 – Winston Churchill
  • 1952 – François Mauriac
  • 1951 – Pär Lagerkvist
  • 1950 – Bertrand Russell
  • 1949 – William Faulkner
  • 1948 – T.S. Eliot
  • 1947 – André Gide
  • 1946 – Hermann Hesse
  • 1945 – Gabriela Mistral
  • 1944 – Johannes V. Jensen
  • 1939 – Frans Eemil Sillanpää
  • 1938 – Pearl Buck
  • 1937 – Roger Martin du Gard
  • 1936 – Eugene O’Neill
  • 1934 – Luigi Pirandello
  • 1933 – Ivan Bunin
  • 1932 – John Galsworthy
  • 1931 – Erik Axel Karlfeldt
  • 1930 – Sinclair Lewis
  • 1929 – Thomas Mann
  • 1928 – Sigrid Undset
  • 1927 – Henri Bergson
  • 1926 – Grazia Deledda
  • 1925 – George Bernard Shaw
  • 1924 – Wladyslaw Reymont
  • 1923 – William Butler Yeats
  • 1922 – Jacinto Benavente
  • 1921 – Anatole France
  • 1920 – Knut Hamsun
  • 1919 – Carl Spitteler
  • 1917 – Karl Gjellerup
  • 1917 – Henrik Pontoppidan
  • 1916 – Verner von Heidenstam
  • 1915 – Romain Rolland
  • 1913 – Rabindranath Tagore
  • 1912 – Gerhart Hauptmann
  • 1911 – Maurice Maeterlinck
  • 1910 – Paul Heyse
  • 1909 – Selma Lagerlöf
  • 1908 – Rudolf Eucken
  • 1907 – Rudyard Kipling
  • 1906 – Giosuè Carducci
  • 1905 – Henryk Sienkiewicz
  • 1904 – Frédéric Mistral
  • 1904 – José Echegaray
  • 1903 – Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson
  • 1902 – Theodor Mommsen
  • 1901 – Sully Prudhomme
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4 Comments

19 for me too. Another draw!

Comment by azahar

Does watching a play count? Pinter, Fo.

I’d certainly recommend Pahmuk, Coetzee…I’m not so fond of Naipaul…Heaney, Morrison, Walcott, Gordimer, yes. I suppose one has to read Marquez, although I don’t like him – I’m somewhat allergic to magical realism – although I did once (ahem) befriend a German woman on a train in Canada by starting a conversation about Hundert Jahre Einsamkeit. Eliot, Hemingway, yes. A bit of Tagore. I really must get around to Neruda. And Faulkner…maybe. And I believe that Böll is worthwile and much overlooked.

Churchill is widely thought to be a bizarre-but-understandable choice.

John Galsworthy – I have a theory that there is a law that says that all charity shops have to have at least one copy of certain books. One is Billy Connolly’s ‘Bigmouth’ (no Nobel material there!). Another is Galsworthy’s ‘In Chancery’.

Comment by Edward the Bonobo

az – the race to 20 is on! 🙂

Ed, yep watching a play counts I think. I checked the list of Pinter plays and somewhat to my surprise I hadn’t seen any of them, not even the TV adaptations.

I thought Churchill was a pretty odd choice too. I assume it was for an autobiography or something like that? Still…

Comment by Dan | thesamovar

It was for ‘A History of the English Speaking People’ and various other works. He wrote quite a lot. I priced up a set of his works in Oxfam last week. Plus he’d recently liberated Europe.

Kurt Vonnegut said that he’d blotted ruined his chances by saying nasty things about Saabs after a dealership he ran collapsed.

Comment by Edward the Bonobo




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