Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Nobel for Literature

In the recent years, each year the Nobel Prize for Literature introduces us to a new writer in some corner of the earth. And soon, we dig up and translate his/her writings into English (and 20 other languages) and find so many virtues in it.

Elfriede Jelinek, this year's winner, is not only unknown in the world; not many people in her own country, Austria, have heard her name. Those who have read her don't really like her work much.

I liked what Bob Corbett said about her in The Guardian recently:

"I seethed, but I read on and on. Jelinek took me by storm, since I had to recognise these were very real people. True, they didn't live in my neighbourhood, but I knew they were legion. I pride myself on being a realist and was taken aback by my repulsion. I had to deal with that. I had to come to terms with Jelinek.

For me, that's what a great artist does. She sees the world, some corner of the world, and reveals it to the rest of us in her medium. I want to know my world, but I need the stimulation and challenge provided by artists, and Jelinek has become very important to me in my later years."


RG said...

Indeed, before this year event's brouhaha, she's unknown. I've tried to get her materials but to no avails. Anyway, that's good thing for a change.

Zafar Anjum said...

I guess her translated works are in the process of printing...I am sure they will be available soon.