• Sweden edition
Swedish poet awarded 2011 Literature Nobel

Swedish poet awarded 2011 Literature Nobel

Published: 06 Oct 2011 12:39 GMT+02:00
Updated: 06 Oct 2011 12:39 GMT+02:00

"Through his condensed, transluscent images, he gives us fresh access to reality," read the citation from the Swedish Academy.

Tranströmer becomes the first Swede in almost 40 years to win the prestigious prize.

The 80-year-old Swede from Stockholm began his serious writing career in 1954 when he published "17 dikter" (17 poems) – one of the most acclaimed literary debuts of the decade.

Predominant in his work are themes of nature and music and he followed up "17 dikter" with a slew of collections in the 1950s and 1960s, including: "Hemligheter på vägen" (1958; Secrets along the way), "Den halvfärdiga himlen" (1962; The Half-Finished Heaven, 2001) and "Klanger och spår" (1966; Windows & Stones : Selected Poems, 1972).

With "Windows & Stones : Selected Poems", published in English in 1972, he consolidated his standing among critics and other readers as one of the leading poets of his generation, according to the Swedish Academy biography.

A significant amount of his work has been translated into English and other languages including "The Sorrow Gondola" and "New Collected Poems", published in 2010 and 2011 respectively.

Tranströmer suffered a stroke in 1990 which impaired his speech, but he continues to write. He has been mentioned several times in the past as a candidate for the Nobel prize and was also tipped as one of the favourites this year.

Aside from his work as a writer, Tranströmer was also respected for his work as a psychologist prior to suffering his stroke, working in juvenile prisons and with drug addicts and convicts.

Tomas Tranströmer is the first Swedish writer since Eyvind Johnson and Harry Martinson, who shared the prize in 1974, to claim the Nobel.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

13:22 October 6, 2011 by rybo1
I've never read his works, but good for him. I will try and see if he has any works in English.
13:53 October 6, 2011 by Value
Wonderful! Congratulations!!! I can be even more proud about having got his autograph a few years ago. It was really high time to award him the Nobel Prize. He lives in a wheelchair after having had a stroke.
22:42 October 6, 2011 by Dr. Dillner
A real happy-go-lucky kind of guy (by his picture!)
23:13 October 6, 2011 by Gabin
la lucidité enfin.
18:32 October 7, 2011 by TerryONeillEsq
I first read his work in Robert Bly's English translations in 1975. I was so taken with his beautiful work that I took a course in conversational Swedish so I could read him in the original. Those lessons came in handy as I had the opportunity to meet Her Majesty Queen Silvia in Washington last year. Still haven't met Tomas.
00:23 October 8, 2011 by Catarin
Congratulations to Mr. Transtromer and Sweden!

I look forward to reading his work.
10:45 October 8, 2011 by OUIJA
Again. I believe that there were better candidates. I do not like his poetry, or must I like it for my comment to be accepted in this

What is wrong with you people at The Local. Must we comment in the way you want us to comment? Or can we comment in our way. You decide.
20:59 October 8, 2011 by tonylaz
I know nothing of Mr. Transtromer or his poetry so my comment is very narrowly directed at the Nobel awards. With awards to people like Yasser Arafat, Al Gore, Jimmy Carter, and Barack Obama, the Nobel awards have become a joke in America. Not among the "press" who clamor for anything that doesn't make sense, but among the population who follow these things.
12:38 October 9, 2011 by OUIJA
Next year's prize will go to Juholt. He has proven to be quite a story teller in the specialty of cience-fiction.
Today's headlines
Late summer sun set to hit Sweden

Late summer sun set to hit Sweden

Forecasters have predicted sunshine across Sweden this week, with a warm front moving in from Russia and temperatures of up to 25C. READ  

International police hunt
Swedish killer arrested after European hunt
Photo: Police

Swedish killer arrested after European hunt

UPDATED: Police arrested a man on Tuesday afternoon after he went missing from a psychiatric ward in western Sweden at the weekend. The man had been convicted of murdering a five-year-old schoolgirl in 2003. READ  

The five best Swedish songs of the month
Swedish singer Tove Lo. Photot: TT

The five best Swedish songs of the month

The summer may be (almost) over but the music will keep on playing here at The Local. Our resident music guru Paul Connolly will be selecting his top new Swedish tracks for us in a new monthly feature. READ  

Hedgehog pet craze sweeps Sweden

Hedgehog pet craze sweeps Sweden

African pygmy hedgehogs are being bought by growing numbers of Swedes, as a trend for keeping exotic pets sweeps the country, the Department for Animal Welfare and Health tells The Local. READ  

Poisonous mushrooms cause stir in Sweden
The mushroom in this picture is not the same as the one from the story. Photo: Shutterstock

Poisonous mushrooms cause stir in Sweden

A person selling freshly-picked mushrooms in Gothenburg has come under fire after it turned out the delicacies were not only poisonous but also hallucinogenic. READ  

Pirate Bay founder case starts in confusion

Pirate Bay founder case starts in confusion

The largest hacking case in Danish history began in confusion on Tuesday, after lawyers representing Swedish Pirate Bay co-founder Gottfrid Svartholm Warg accused the prosecution of "unreasonable" tactics. READ  

Swedfund joins H&M in Ethiopia expansion

Swedfund joins H&M in Ethiopia expansion

As H&M expands into Ethiopia, Sweden's state venture capital unit Swedfund has announced that it will back the clothing giant, in a move hoped to create more jobs for local women. READ  

Elections 2014
Social Democrats reveal election manifesto
Photo: TT

Social Democrats reveal election manifesto

UPDATED: Sweden's main opposition party the Social Democrats has revealed its election manifesto at a press conference at a high school in Stockholm, with a key focus on education and welfare benefits. READ  

Teen run over by train after 'shoplifting' chase

Teen run over by train after 'shoplifting' chase

A teenage boy is in a critical condition after he was hit by a passing metro train in Stockholm. The accident ground rail traffic to a halt, and has police suspecting attempted murder. READ  

Record win at Sweden's tough island race
Photo: Jakob Edholm/ÖTILLÖ14

Record win at Sweden's tough island race

Two Swedes crushed last year's course record at the Swimrun world championship in Stockholm's archipelago on Monday. READ  

The five best Swedish songs of the month
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
Huge clear up underway after Skåne floods
Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto
Sweden's highest peak to lose title next year
Blog updates

02 September

America night (Blogweiser) »

" There was an event this weekend for the ‘Americans in Sweden’ Facebook group. I’m a member, and I brought my girls to the evening. The gathering was at a Boston-themed sportsbar in a mall. There were loads of screens, a bowling alley, a game room and a jumbotron. It was as good a place as any to..." READ »


25 August

Hit och dit, här och där (The Swedish Teacher) »

" Hej igen! A common challenge for Swedish language students are the location adverbs hit/här, dit/där, hem/hemma etc. Some of the location adverbs come in two versions. We should use one type of location adverb when we use a verb describes where we are, and we should use the other type of location adverb when we the verb..." READ »

How immigration became a key election issue
Brit's life in Sweden becomes BBC radio show
People-watching August 27
Top ten false friends in Swedish
Roma advocate scoops Wallenberg prize
Meet the man who made a Swedish store recall its high heels for kids
Business & Money
'How I came to run my own business in Sweden'
Expert explains why Sweden's election oozes uncertainty
City plays Schindler's List theme at Nazi rally
For Stockholm Fashion Week, here's the A-Z of Swedish fashion
'Amnesiac' man avoids deportation for ten years
Princess Estelle through the years
Business & Money
Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Business & Money
Five golden rules for the Swedish job hunt
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
People-watching August 22-24
Armed royal guards caught (very) drunk on the job
Sweden orders textbook on Roma discrimination
Violent anti-Nazi demonstrations in Malmö
A closer look at Sweden's five official minority languages
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at: