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Bob Dylan Will Not Pick Up His Nobel Prize In Person In December

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 13: Musician Bob Dylan performs onstage during The 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards held at Staples Center on February 13, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

 

After months of silence, hesitation and speculation, it’s now certain, Bob Dylan will not attend the ceremony to receive his Nobel Prize for Literature. Dylan wrote a letter to the Swedish Academy to announce his decision:

‘Yesterday evening the Swedish Academy received a personal letter from Bob Dylan, in which he explained that due to pre-existing commitments, he is unable to travel to Stockholm in December and therefore will not attend the Nobel Prize Ceremony,’ reads a statement posted on the Academy website. ‘He underscored, once again, that he feels very honored indeed, wishing that he could receive the prize in person.’

‘That laureates decide not to come is unusual, to be sure, but not exceptional. In the recent past, several laureates have, for various reasons, been unable to come to Stockholm to receive the prize, among them Doris Lessing, Harold Pinter, and Elfriede Jelinek. The prize still belongs to them, just as it belongs to Bob Dylan.

We look forward to Bob Dylan’s Nobel Lecture, which he must give – it is the only requirement – within six months counting from December 10, 2016.’

Pre-existing commitments? Honestly, it sounds like the lame excuse you give when you don’t want to attend some boring diner or an annoying wedding, Dylan has no concert scheduled in December, but we should give him the benefit of the doubt, may be he wants to spend the holidays with his family? May be he is tired… Or may be this member of the academy and chairman of the Nobel Literature Committee, calling him ‘impolite and arrogant’ a few weeks ago, did really piss him off?

But a Nobel Prize in literature is the ultimate reward for a poet, a songwriter, a musician, as a matter of fact, the choice has been abundantly criticized all over the world. May be he is genuinely busy, may be it’s a sort of fuck you to the award system in general. Lot’s of people are appalled by his decision, many will be quick to judge his answer as rude and ill-mannered, as most people are suckers for prices and rewards. But I know for a fact that he didn’t even show up at the wedding of one of his daughters, here in California, so the Swedish Academy should not take it personally. Whatever is going on or not going on in his private life, Bob Dylan continues to shock the establishment at 75.

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