October 11, 2005

Nobel literature academy member quits in protest

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - A member of the Swedish Academy, the
body which awards the Nobel literature prize, said on Tuesday
he was resigning in protest at last year's selection of
Austrian Elfriede Jelinek.

The resignation of Knut Ahnlund, a member of the academy
since 1983, comes only days before the announcement of the
winner of the 2005 prize, expected some time this week.

Ahnlund said in a signed article in Swedish daily Svenska
Dagbladet that last year's surprise selection of Jelinek for
the prize had "caused irreparable harm to the value of the
award for the foreseeable future," calling Jelinek's work
"parasitic" and without "a trace of artistic structure."

"The 2004 Nobel prize has not only caused irreparable
damage to all progressive forces, it has (also) confused the
general view of literature as art," Ahnlund said. "After this I
cannot even formally remain in the Swedish Academy."