How good a poet is Bob Dylan

Reactions to Dylan's Honor: From "Joke" to "Greatest Living Poet"

Stockholm / Vienna - There was "great agreement" in the decision to award the US songwriter Bob Dylan the Nobel Prize for Literature. That said Sara Danius, head of the Swedish Academy, at a press conference after the announcement. There was little agreement among them Reactions from the literary world.

- "He is is probably the greatest living poet." - Per Wästberg, Swedish writer and member of the Swedish Academy.

- "From Orpheus to Faiz, songs and poetry have always been closely linked. Dylan is a brilliant heir to this Bardic tradition." - Indo-British writer Salman Rushdie on Twitter.

- "Like no other, Dylan has combined the modern American musical tradition with high literary culture to create a new art form - Ovid with blues, Shakespeare with gospel. It would therefore be a big misunderstanding to think that he is only awarded for the quality of his lyrics. Music and performance are a triad. " - Dylan biographer Heinrich Detering from the University of Göttingen opposite the dpa.

- "I'm a Dylan fan, but that's a badly thought out nostalgia price, ripped from the rancid prostate by senile, idiotic hippies." - "Trainspotting" author Irvine Welsh on Twitter.

- "If Bob Dylan can get the Nobel Prize for Literature, Stephen King should be inducted into the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame." - US crime writer Jason Pinter on Twitter.

- "Occasionally the academy allows itself a 'joke'. Bob Dylan's award is as much a joke as Dario Fo's was. It's best if you laugh too." - Literary critic and ARD presenter Denis Scheck.

- Klaus Kastberger, director of the Literaturhaus Graz, sees the decision as "the right tendency, but the wrong person. They just wanted to do justice to the fact that literature is increasingly being defined differently than ten years ago and now has a songwriter But of course, as in many cases, that's 20 years too late. " If you wanted to award a prize to a "different literature", from his point of view nobody would come into question "who is at the top of these betting odds," said Kastberger. The now deceased prizewinner Dario Fo was also an approach "to enter into another form of literature, and that was years ago. Whether Dylan is literature has been discussed for 20 years. But now there is a whole new discussion where everything that the middle-class business understands by literature is fragile. "

- For the Viennese cultural scientist Eugen Banauch, the award of the Nobel Prize for Literature to Bob Dylan shows that the combination of poetry, music and performance in songwriting has finally arrived in the literary world. One thing is clear: "Dylan doesn't need the Nobel Prize," says Banauch, who has done a lot of research on Dylan himself. Conversely, the fact that the Nobel Prize needs Bob Dylan as a figurehead also goes too far. "But it may well be that the public interested in literature can use someone like Dylan as a Nobel Prize winner," said the scientist from the Institute for English and American Studies at the University of Vienna. The decision could in a sense be seen as a call sign against voices that believe the poetry is in decline. With Dylan, the Nobel Prize Committee is expanding the horizons of what high-quality poetry can be, so to speak.

- Literary critic Sigrid Löffler has criticized Bob Dylan's Nobel Prize for Literature as a "fantastic wrong decision". Löffler told MDR Aktuell that she had the impression that the Swedish Academy had wanted to make itself interesting for some time, "through the particularly unusual and extravagant names that it chose". This was already the case last year with the award for the Belarusian Svetlana Alexievich - "a very courageous and deserving journalist, but those were minutes, journalistic montages". Dylan is undoubtedly a brilliant folk and rock musician and has given rock music a new linguistic complexity - "but please, that was all 50 years ago," said Löffler. He wrote puzzling, dark and very complex, symbolist texts, but these are not independent poetry, because they only functioned sung.

Also Politician referred to the award of the Nobel Prize for Literature to the US songwriter Bob Dylan via broadcast and on social media.

- "THE TIMES THEY ARE A-CHANGIN '- congrats to Mr. @bobdylan for the @NobelPrize in #literature. #Vielfaltliteratur", wrote for example Culture Minister Thomas Drozda (SPÖ) on Twitter.

- "Exciting decision. Congratulations!" Commented presidential candidate Alexander Van der Bellen there.

- "The ingenious Dylan finally and rightly receives this award," said SPÖ club chairman Andreas Schieder happily via broadcast.

- "His entire literary oeuvre has now received the award it deserves, although of course I always hated to sing 'Blowin' in the Wind 'in religious education", NEOS culture spokesman Niko Alm makes a personal reference in a statement.

- The German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier (SPD) called the awarding of the Nobel Prize for Literature to Bob Dylan a "courageous decision". The Stockholm jury has broken the genre boundaries again this year, said Steinmeier, according to his house on Thursday in Strasbourg. (APA, October 13, 2016)