Why Bob Dylan won the Nobel Prize for Literature?

According to a tweet by Bob Dylan’s official handle, he was awarded the 2016 #NobelPrizeLiterature “for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.” Bob Dylan has in the last 50 years sold more than 100 million records, has 11 Grammys, a Golden Globe and an Academy Award. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he has also published six books of poem, drawing, and painting. He also received a special citation from Pulitzer Prize jury in 2008.

At the same time, Bob Dylan is probably the only American born Nobel winner this time. Five out of the eleven winners are British born immigrants. Though the Nobel has Swedish origins, America’s influence has been indubitable with over 50+ awards going to them, a lot more than any other country in the world.

Stuart Anderson of the National Foundation for American Policy was quoted in Independent, for finding that immigrants won 40 per cent—31 of the 78 Nobels—won by Americans in chemistry, medicine and physics since 2000. Even with only 4.35% of world population, they are making a big deal about it.

Juan Manuel Santos the Columbian president received the peace prize for brokering a peace treaty with FARC guerillas. In 1985, FARC co-created left-wing political party called Patriotic Union (UP). The UP has since been distancing itself from insurgent groups because they want to emerge as mainstream candidates. Santos’ support base is still questionable. American influence in Columbia is probably not. And that’s why even he won a Nobel this time.

Bob Dylan with his iconic status is more than eligible to be the only native American to win Nobel Prize this year. 


Things you don’t know about Bob Dylan

  • Robert Allen Zimmerman also went by Elston Gunn before he became a sensation as Bob Dylan.
  • According to Bob Spitzm, the author of The Beatles: The Biography, it was Dylan who first introduced the Fab Four to marijuana.
  • His great-grandfather and uncles were well-off; they owned the biggest movie theaters.
  • His song “Things Have Changed” featured in the soundtrack of Wonder Boys won him the Oscar.
  • Dylan is a rock star turned farmer in 1987 box office flop Hearts on Fire.
  • In 2004, he appeared in a Victoria Secret commercial.
  • Larry Charles from Seinfeld directed Dylan’s 2003 film Masked & Anonymous.
  • He has played shows in support of the ultra-Orthodox Lubavitcher sect of Judaism.
  • He toured with the Grateful Dead for six shows in 87.
  • After Elvis died, Dylan didn’t speak to anyone for a week.
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