The L’s Nobel Prize Pool: This Guy Wins; We All Lose

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10/09/2008 10:30 AM |

Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio, of France, “author of new departures, poetic adventure and sensual ecstasy, explorer of a humanity beyond and below the reigning civilization.”

Well, that sounds kinda sexy.

It has been a while since France won, and his bona-fides — experimental novels in the 60s and a over recent decades many works of fiction and non-fiction drawn from his vast experience as a world traveller and dealing, it would seem, in both theme and style, with one’s relationship to all parts of the world.

He is, needless to say, rather unknown here, despite his considerable fame in France. Which, despite the carping of the Times report on the prize (which misinterprets the remarks anyway, despite jamming them into the lede before getting to the actual winner of the Nobel, assholes), kinda proves Horace Engdahl’s point about us being “insular”, and how we as a literary culture have no idea about writing produced beyond our borders.

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