Congratulations to Peruvian novelist Mario Vargas Llosa, winner of the 2010 Nobel Prize for Literature!
As Fabiano Santiago notes, in today's Miami Herald: "Peruvian novelist Mario Vargas Llosa– author of some of the most celebrated literature in Latin America, won the Nobel Prize for Literature on Thursday."
"In elegant and clear prose, Vargas Llosa chronicled the machinations of power and the powerful in Latin America in narratives that engrossed readers in the most intimate details of a character's life.
Whether writing about a dictator in Santo Domingo — the "goat'' in his acclaimed novel "The Feast of the Goat'— or about the mysterious woman who consumes a man's life in "The Bad Girl,'' Vargas Llosa masterfully captured the essence of modern times and what drives people to their fates.
The writer, who is spending this semester in Princeton University as the 2010 Distinguished Visitor in the Latin American studies program, learned of his prize while in New York Thursday morning. He was scheduled to give a 1 p.m. press conference in the city's Instituto Cervantes, a center dedicated to the promotion of the Spanish language in the United States.
Vargas Llosa told Spain's El Pais newspaper, where he is a columnist, that he felt "a great joy" when he was called with the news. But at first, he thought it might be a joke.
Many of his friends thought Vargas Llosa had been snubbed for the prize because of his early denunciation of the Fidel Castro regime in the 1970s, when most of the intellectual left continued to support Castro despite his jailing of poet Heberto Padilla and his censorship of the arts and letters in Cuba.
In 1990, Vargas Llosa ran for the presidency of Peru–he lost to Alberto Fujimori–and brought his campaign to Miami, where he has been a favorite author of the Miami Book Fair International since its early days.
Disappointed by Peruvians' approval of Fujimori's rule, he obtained Spanish citizenship and lived between homes in Madrid and London."