Chinese author Mo Yan won Nobel Prize in Stockholm

On 10 October, Chinese author Mo Yan was announced the winner of 2012 Nobel Prize in Literature at at the Swedish Academy in Stockholm, Sweden. 

“Yan is an author who with hallucinatory realism merges folk tales, history and the contemporary”, the Academy’s Permanent Secretary Peter Englund said in a short announcement shortly after 1pm in Stockholm.

“Through a mixture of fantasy and reality, historical and social perspectives, Mo Yan has created a world reminiscent in its complexity of those in the writings of William Faulkner and Gabriel García Márquez,” the Swedish Academy said of Yan in its official biography.

Among Yan’s works are “Falling Rain on a Spring Night”, “Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out”, and “Red Sorghum”.

“I’m overjoyed, but I’m a little frightened also,” Yan said on the telephone, the Academy’s Göran Malmqvist told the Aftonbladet newspaper.

This is the first time a Chinese national and the second time a Chinese-born writer has won the prize, after Gao Xingian, who received French citizenship in 1997, was honoured in 2000.

Mo Yan is a pen name meaning ‘don’t speak’. Mo’s real name is Guan Moye. The literature prize is the fourth of this year’s crop of prizes, which were established in the will of Swedish dynamite inventor Alfred Nobel.

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