Bob Dylan’s Nobel: Reactions — not all of them positive

Irvine Welsh slams the awarding of the Literature prize to the US singer-songwriter, while other authors react with praise

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Bob Dylan

Here’s how the world has reacted to the awarding of the Nobel Prize in literature to American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan.

British Indian novelist Salman Rushdie, often mentioned as a possible Nobel literature prize contender, has lauded the choice to honour Dylan with this year’s award.

“From Orpheus to Faiz, song & poetry have been closely linked. Dylan is the brilliant inheritor of the bardic tradition. Great choice,” Rushdie tweeted.

Scottish novelist Irvine Welsh reacted angrily to the awarding of the Nobel Prize for literature to Bob Dylan, embarking on a series of exchanges on Twitter.

“I’m a Dylan fan, but this is an ill conceived nostalgia award wrenched from the rancid prostates of senile, gibbering hippies,” the Trainspotting author wrote.

He continued: “If you’re a ‘music’ fan, look it up in the dictionary. Then ‘literature’. Then compare and contrast.”

He also begged to know if writer Don De Lillo had been inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll hall of fame yet.

Chilean President Michelle Bachelet was one of the first to congratulate Dylan.

“What a joy that Bob Dylan got the Nobel for literature. Many fond memories from my adolescence are associated with his music,” she tweeted.

Here’s what others in the Twitterverse had to say. Some, seeing Dylan’s name trending on Twitter, expressed concern that another name had been added to 2016’s list of music deaths (David Bowie and Prince are two stars who died this year).

The Swedish Academy cited the American musician for “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”

Dylan had been mentioned in the Nobel speculation for years, but few experts expected the academy to extend the prestigious award to a genre such as popular music.

The literature award was the last of this year’s Nobel Prizes to be announced. The six awards will be handed out on December 10, the anniversary of prize founder Alfred Nobel’s death in 1896.