The Nobel Literature Prize
[dropcap]W[/dropcap]hatever the powers that be or the knowledgeable that be this editorial does not agree with whatever they decide. But they are also humans. Certainly there might be some mistakes, but that is understandable. Fine. Frankly speaking, half of them do not really deserve this honour, However, we do not mind too much about it. On October 10, the Nobel Prize will be announced. And that is fine.Many great writers have not been honoured by the Nobel Foundation. For instance, while other prizes may have two or more to share the glory, the Literature Prize is meant for only one winner. Alfred Nobel, in his will, had stipulated in his will that the prize must be awarded for the “most outstanding work of am idealistic tendency.” And he has succeeded so far.
The sad part of literary history is that many people did not get what they deserved. One example is Samuel Langhorne Clemens, otherwise better known as Mark Twain was not considered for it. So also James Joyce who truly deserved for his “ULYSSES”—but it had ben banned for 50 years! This is just to cite a few.
Of the finest literary laureates who deserved the honour, perhaps Ernest Hemingway deserved it. Why? He didn’t write high flown language but he wrote about the life he lived. One journalist in New Delhi called him and “action writer.” No! No!
Hemingway was a master of a tough remorseful style of writing that spawned many generations of imitators but no equals. Hemingway visited Spain during the Spanish civil war and recorded his experiences in “For Whom The bell tolls.” Some smart aleck Indian journalist labeled his experiences as “action writing” and got the brunt of it from fellow colleagues.
Hemingway believed in short sentences and the minimum use of adjectives. He would describe an action as it actually happened, its sequence without any adjectives thus leaving the reader to feel the emotion. Someone described his lines as being as terse as a trans-Atlantic cable. The lines in “The Old Man and the Sea” (for which he got awarded the Nobel prize for Literature, 1954) were as taut as the lines he threw to catch the Marlin fish.
The citation for the Nobel Prize read: “He is one of those who undauntedly and single-handedly reproduces the genuine hard features of the countenance of the age.”
And yet, there has never been a formal school of Hemingway’s writing because the standards he set were too rigid. Just to by-pass the high flown literature but no less related, there is still a bar in Paris which has signboard “Hemingway used to drink here!” And Hemingway was also fascinated by the concept of death which he felt was the only certainty in life. In “Death in the Afternoon” he wrote, El sol es el major torero (The sun is the greatest bullfighter. Without the Sun there can be no bullfight).
Sure, in our beloved Nagaland we have no bullfight, but we have wrestling, football and so many other games—half of which need no mention.
The point here is to encourage our so many youngsters both male and female who have had the advantage and blessings of so much education in our very land. One day, at least one Naga should be awarded a Nobel Prize for Literatrure—if not for other.
Best of luck!