Mario Vargas Llosa Wins Nobel Prize for Literature

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10/07/2010 7:27 AM |

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For the first time in a couple years, this year’s Nobel Prize in Literature went to a region that was “due” and an author seemingly perpetually in the discussion: Mario Vargas Llosa, the prolific Peruvian, “for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual’s resistance, revolt and defeat” (I’m a fan of his 2000 novel The Feast of the Goat, a book that’s frequently blocky but really quite compelling in its reach across the layers of a dictatorship, from the General down through his lackeys, assassins, and citizens).

Llosa becomes the first South American to win since Gabriel Garcia Marquez in 1982, a great bit of symmetry given Marquez and Llosa’s one-time friendship, eroded by their diverging attitudes to Communism, and by the time Llosa gave Marquez a shiner after Marquez slept with Llosa’s wife during a period of estrangement.

Here’s Llosa’s Paris Review Art of Fiction interview, from 1990.