NPR : News

Filed Under:

Literature Nobel Goes To Swedish Poet Tomas Transtromer

Swedish poet Tomas Transtromer is the 2011 Nobel laureate in literature, it was just announced.

In its statement, the Nobel committee said his work "gives us fresh access to reality."

Our friends over at Monkey See have more, including Neda Ulaby's pre-announcement look at the "Nobel shortlist."

As Neda wrote, Transtromer had been "another constant Nobel bridesmaid. He's a Swedish surrealist poet who's also spent a career as a psychiatrist working with institutionalized children."

Watch Monkey See later for a post from John Freeman, editor of Granta magazine.

Update at 7:30 a.m. ET: Transtromer will receive about $1.5 million.

Update at 7:25 a.m. ET. Some Of His Poems:

Eight of Transtromer's works are posted here.

Update at 7:15 a.m. ET.

Here's the entire press release from the committee:

"The Nobel Prize in Literature for 2011 is awarded to the Swedish poet Tomas Transtromer 'because, through his condensed, translucent images, he gives us fresh access to reality.' "

In its biographical information about the 80-year-old Transtomer, the committee writes:

"After publishing poems in a number of journals, Tranströmer published in 1954 17 dikter (17 poems) — one of the most acclaimed literary debuts of the decade. Already apparent was the interest in nature and music that has informed a major part of his production. ...

"Most of Transtromer's poetry collections are characterised by economy, concreteness and poignant metaphors. In his latest collections, Sorgegondolen (1996; The Sorrow Gondola, 1997) and Den stora gatan (2004; The Great Enigma, 2006), Transtromer has shifted towards an even smaller format and a higher degree of concentration."

Two Nobel prizes have yet to be awarded. The Peace Prize will be announced Friday morning. The Nobel in economics is due to be announced on Monday.

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit


Not My Job: Comedian Carol Burnett Gets Quizzed On Cougars (The Cats, Of Course)

In the 1970s, families would sit down together every Saturday to watch The Carol Burnett Show. The first five seasons of the legendary variety show are now out on DVD.

Time To Pursue The Pawpaw, America's Fleeting Fall Fruit

Ever seen a pawpaw in the supermarket? Didn't think so. Ohioan Chris Chmiel wants to change that by growing and promoting this seasonal, mango-like fruit that's native to the U.S.

An Evangelical Leader's Changing Views On Gun Ownership

As legislators fail to find solutions to mass shootings, Evangelical Minister Rob Schenck thinks religious groups have a part to play in educating people about guns and their relationships with them.

This Week In Data Collection News, And The Privacy Paradox

As California tightened its digital privacy protections, news involving Google, Pandora and other firms highlighted the way companies increasingly rely on data about their users. How much do we care?

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.