Swedish body calls the beauty of Dylan’s songs “of the highest rank.”

The Nobel Prize ceremony took place today in Stockholm and Bob Dylan, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature, did not attend. In his place Patti Smith performed his song “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall.” The ceremony was broadcast live on YouTube with the award of Dylan’s prize at the 56 minute mark and Smith’s performance at 63 minutes.

Smith, who toured with Dylan in 1995, was accompanied by an orchestra for the performance and apologized to the audience for being nervous when she had to repeat a line.

Bob Dylan’s prize was introduced by Professor Horace Engdahl who called the award a revolution. “But does he get the prize for upsetting the system of literature? Not really. There is a simpler explanation … Chamfort made the observation that when a master such as La Fontaine appears, the hierarchy of genres … is nullified. “What matter the rank of a work when its beauty is of the highest rank?” he wrote. That is the straight answer to the question of how Bob Dylan belongs in literature: as the beauty of his songs is of the highest rank.” [Via Pitchfork]

The ceremony follows months of back and forth between Dylan and the Nobel Committee after the singer was seen as ignoring his nomination. He eventually acknowledged the win, saying he was speechless at the move, and finally said he had other commitments that would prevent him from attending the ceremony.



Share Tweet

Privacy Preference Center

Required Cookies & Technologies

Some of the technologies we use are necessary for critical functions like security and site integrity, account authentication, security and privacy preferences, internal site usage and maintenance data, and to make the site work correctly for browsing and transactions.

gdpr, woocommerce_cart_hash, woocommerce_items_in_cart, _wp_wocommerce_session, sucuri_cloudproxy_uuid_*

Site Customisation

Cookies and similar technologies are used to improve your experience, to do things like:

- remember your login, general, and regional preferences
- personalize content, search, recommendations, and offers

Without these technologies, things like personalised recommendations, your account preferences, or localisation may not work correctly.


Personalised Advertising

These technologies are used for things like:

- personalised ads
- to limit how many times you see an ad
- to understand usage via Google Analytics
- to understand how you got to our web properties
- to ensure that we understand the audience and can provide relevant ads

We do this with social media, marketing, and analytics partners (who may have their own information they’ve collected). Saying no will not stop you from seeing our ads, but it may make them less relevant or more repetitive.

_ga, _gid, gat,_gads,_fbp