Kenyan writer in the news once again as possible winner of coveted prize
By Ada Anioji
Kenyan writer, Ngugi wa Thiongo is being tipped in informed circles as a possible winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature 2017.
Ngugi, who is the author of immensely popular books such as Devil on the Cross, Weep not Child, Wizard of the Crow, I will marry when I want, The trial of Dedan Kimathi, Petals of Blood and A Grain of Wheat was also a hot favourite for last year’s award that was however eventually taken by the singer, Bob Dylan.
The Nobel Prize for Literature is ordinarily awarded as part of the regular fare of activities coinciding with the world’s largest annual book convocation in the English language, the Frankfurt Bookfair which since the end of the second World War, has almost always been held in the first two weeks of October of every year.
Other past winners from continental Africa include the Nigerian bibliophile, Professor Wole Soyinka, who opened the floodgate for African writers with his 1986 win, the Egyptian Naguib Mahfouz and the South African, Nadine Gordimer.
The Prize, which is part of a series that also includes the prizes for Chemistry, Physics, Economics and the very coveted Peace Prize, were endowed by the scientist who invented dynamite, Alfred Nobel. It has been administered through the year’s by The Swedish Academy, a trust put together to oversee the award’s process, and which operates principally from Alfred Nobel’s home country.
The winner of this year’s prize is due to be announced on Thursday, October 5, 2017.
Prize watchers say that should Ngugi not get it for any reason, the next likely bet could be Japan’s Haruki Murakami, But then as was seen with the surprise emergence of Bob Dylan last year, there is really no pigeon-holing the Nobel judges!
Ngugi wa Thiongo