Korean poet Ko Un is one of the favorites to take home the Nobel Prize in Literature this year, reports AP:
With European novelists dominating recent Nobel literature awards, experts are guessing the Swedish Academy will look farther afield when it announces the 2010 winner on Thursday.
South Korean poet Ko Un and Syria’s Adonis are generating the most buzz among Swedish Nobel watchers, while betting agencies are giving lower odds to Ngugi wa Thiong’o of Kenya and American novelist Cormac McCarthy.
Oddly enough, I’ve actually read Ngugi was Thiong’o.
Literature expert Maria Schottenius at Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter, who correctly predicted last year’s winner Herta Mueller of Germany, said she believes it will be Ko or Adonis this year, with songwriter Bob Dylan as an outsider.
Ko is “the kind of person who is trying to unite his divided country with poetry and he writes about everything he encounters, all the people, stones, plants and animals,” she said.
Swedish national broadcaster SVT also pointed to Ko and Adonis as potential winners, with Algeria’s Assia Djebar and Canadian writer Alice Munro among its other top candidates.
In point of fact, Ko trying to unite his divided country with more than poetry. He’s trying to unite the language, too, as chairman of an inter-Korean commission to draw up a united dictionary, a project now being threatened by budget cuts.
If Ko wins, he will be the second Korean to win a Nobel Prize. It will also make Brother Anthony a happy man.