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Jon Olav Fosse Awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature 2023

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Norwegian author Jon Fosse awarded 2023 Nobel Prize in LiteratureJon Olav Fosse of Norway was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature 2023 “for his innovative plays and prose which give voice to the unsayable”. Fosse is the 4th  Norwegian writer to win the Nobel Prize in Literature.

  • The Nobel Prize in Literature is awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, Sweden.

Note:The other Norwegian winners of Nobel Prize in Literature are Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson (1903), Knut Hamsun(1920) and Sigrid Undset(1928).

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Prize Money: Recipients of the Nobel Prize are presented with a Nobel Prize diploma(certificate), a gold medal, and a cash award. The Nobel Prize amount for 2023 is set at Swedish kronor (SEK) 11 million per full Nobel Prize.

About Jon Olav Fosse: 

i.Jon Olav Fosse was born in 1959 in Haugesund, Norway.

  • He is one of the most widely performed contemporary playwrights (someone who writes plays) in the world.

ii.Fosse writes in Nynorsk, one of the two official written versions of the Norwegian language, the other being Bokmaal.

  • Fosse was the first Nynorsk writer in nearly a century to win the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Noted Literature Works:

i.Jon Olav Fosse is the author of 40 plays, novels, short stories, children’s books, poetry, and essays.

  • His writing style is distinguished by simple, minimal, and searing dialogue.

ii.Fosse’s first novel, “Red, Black,” was published in 1983, and his debut play, ‘Og aldri skal vi skiljast’ (And We’ll Never Be Parted), was performed in 1994.

iii.Fosse’s most celebrated works is the prose known as “The Septology” (a collection of 7 parts).

  • This was published in 3 volumes from 2019-2021 under the titles “The Other Name: Septology I-II”, “I Is Another: Septology III-V” and “A New Name: Septology VI-VII”.
  • “A New Name” was shortlisted for the International Booker Prize in 2022.

iv.His other major prose works include “Melancholia” I and II (1995-1996); “Morning and Evening,”“Wakefulness;” and “Olav’s Dreams.”

  • Fosse’s works has been translated into more than 50 languages and his plays have been staged more than 1,000 times around the world.

v.In 2010, Fosse won the International Ibsen Award, the world’s most prestigious theatre award founded by the Norwegian government.

Facts on the Nobel Prize in Literature:

i.The Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded 116 times to 120 individuals since 1901.

ii.Youngest literature laureate:Joseph Rudyard Kipling was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1907 at the age of 41, Kipling is best known for “The Jungle Book” and remains the youngest Nobel laureate for Literature

iii.Oldest literature laureate: Doris Lessing was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2007 at the age of 88 and remains the oldest Nobel laureate for Literature.

iv.Female Nobel Prize laureates in literature:

  • Since 1901, 17 women have received the Nobel Prize in Literature.
  • Selma Lagerlöf (1858-1940), a Swedish author, was the first woman to receive the award in 1909.
  • Annie Ernaux of France was the latest woman to win the award in 2022.


Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill, former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom(UK) won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1953.

Indian Nobel Prize laureates in literature:

In 1913, Rabindranath Tagore, a renowned Indian poet, musician, and painter, became the first Indian and the first Asian to win the Nobel Prize. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature 1913.

Click here to know about Nobel Prize in Medicine 2023