Vargas Llosa Is Awarded The 2010 Nobel Prize For Literature
The Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa, whose deeply political work vividly examines the perils of power and corruption in Latin America, won the 2010 Nobel Prize in Literature on Thursday.
Announcing the award in Stockholm, the Swedish Academy praised Mr. Vargas Llosa “for his cartography of the structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual’s resistance, revolt and defeat.”
Mr. Vargas Llosa, 74, is one of the most celebrated writers of the Spanish-speaking world, frequently mentioned with his contemporary Gabríel Garcia Márquez, who won the literature Nobel in 1982, the last South American to do so. He has written more than 30 novels, plays and essays, including “The Feast of the Goat” and “The War of the End of the World.”
In an interview with The Times in 2002, Mr. Vargas Llosa said that it was the novelist’s obligation to question real life. “I don’t think there is a great fiction that is not an essential contradiction of the world as it is,” he said. “The Inquisition forbade the novel for 300 years in Latin America. I think they understood very well the seditious consequence that fiction can have on the human spirit.’”Born in 1936 in Arequipa, Peru, Mr. Vargas Llosa first realized that he wanted to be a writer when he was a child, enthralled with adventure novels by Jules Verne. After college, he spent time writing for newspapers and, like many Latin American writers, began his literary career abroad, living in Paris, Madrid and London as a young man.
His work found a wide international audience in the 1960’s with the publication of “The Time of the Hero,” a novel based on a Peruvian military academy that aroused some controversy in his home country.
Beyond being political, Mr. Vargas Llosa explored in his novels how politics feels to ordinary people.