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Chinese author Mo Yan wins Nobel for literature

Thursday, October 11, 2012 - 01:38

Oct. 11 - Chinese writer Mo Yan wins the 2012 Nobel Prize for literature for works with qualities of ''hallucinatory realism''. Sarah Sheffer reports.

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The winner of the 2012 Nobel Prize for literature is announced Thursday. (SOUNDBITE) (English) PERMANENT SECRETARY OF THE SWEDISH ACADEMY, PETER ENGLUND, SAYING: "The Nobel Prize in literature for 2012 is awarded to the Chinese writer Mo Yan, who with hallucinatory realism merges folk tales, history and the contemporary." Mo Yan, who adopted a pseudonym that means "Don't speak", is best known in the West for "Red Sorghum", which portrayed the hardships endured by farmers in the early years of communist rule. Mo's books, some of which have been banned in China, tackle corruption, decadence in Chinese society, China's family planning policy and rural life, which he is familiar with. This graduate student says Mo's work reflected the feelings of many Chinese. But some critics question his links to the government. (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) WEN YUNCHAO, BLOGGER AND JOURNALIST, SAYING: "The two words 'Mo Yan' mean 'do not speak', and they are a very real portrayal of the current political situation in China. With Mo Yan's winning of the prize, people in China will get the message that you can become an accomplice of an authoritarian government. As long as you have made enough contributions to literature, you will have the chance to win the most prestigious international award. Morally and politically, I think this will have devastating consequences." A Chinese national has never before won a Nobel Prize for Literature.

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Chinese author Mo Yan wins Nobel for literature

Thursday, October 11, 2012 - 01:38