There were many eyebrows raised and a chorus of groans heard as Bob Dylan got named for the Nobel Prize in Literature-2016. Plenty of discussions, debates and speculations have been made regarding Dylan being given the prize, that too in Literature. To award Bob Dylan the Nobel Prize in Literature—“for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition,” according to the Swedish Academy- has been widely criticized as a critical error. He is also credited to have created new boundaries in literature but taking the words right from the mouth of the critics, Dylan is more of a musician than a writer and giving the prize to a world renowned musician was like disrespecting the other literary figures who have contributed significantly in the field of literature over their lifetime.
On a different note, Dylan being awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature didn’t only draw speculations and criticisms but it was also welcomed warmly world over deeming the declaration to be absolutely legitimate as it acknowledged highly commendable work of a life time in the field of songwriting. Dylan is known for his songs on protest against the contemporary socio- political issues. He became the voice of the voiceless at times of unrest and his songs carried deep concealed meanings covering all forms of human emotions and experiences. The worldwide debate on Dylan winning the Nobel Prize also made me question the fact at least on a positive note that the Nobel Prize should also have a different category of music because music is one vital component of art; and music undeniably has had a major influence on lives of human beings from the beginning of time.
For me personally, it definitely comes as a surprise but I am glad that Bob Dylan was awarded with the Nobel Prize for Literature this year. The simplicity and delicate flow with which he expressed his feelings and blended them into his songs has appealed to the masses over generations. He has proven to be a perfect example of how one need not be heavily equipped with complicated vocabulary and incomprehensible literature to win hearts of people. Bob Dylan managed to steal away attention with sheer beauty in words which just touched and connected the hearts of people across geographical boundaries. Though critics have left no stone unturned to point out that it was not Dylan’s writing but it is his music which made more of a magical effect because of which his music has turned immortal for over half a century.
Bob Dylan is what he is because he stepped outside the established conventions, either be it in his writings or with his music. He may not be a Poet, Author or Novelist according to traditional definitions and norms but he can sure be credited to have changed the course of songwriting from conventional to his own Dylan approach which motivated a lot of song writers to walk on his footsteps in the decades to follow. He didn’t chase the mainstream but he created his own stream and that is what made Bob Dylan the legendary songwriter/ musician we know of today. He, being a multi talented person was able to create timeless music giving life to his thoughts but that should not be a reason to deny his prowess in creating brilliant literature in the form of songs. Keeping all the definitions, speculations, convictions, norms and notions on one side one may claim that Dylan didn’t deserve the Nobel Prize by a thin line but I am sure that whoever is aware of the works of Dylan will certainly agree to the fact that Dylan may or may not have deserved the Nobel Prize but the Nobel Prize certainly deserved someone of Bob Dylan’s stature. There is no wonder why People have been devout Dylan fans till date. Anyways whatever the question may have been in the first place but as I sit on my table writing this article listening to one of Dylan’s song which gives me my answers and ‘the answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
the answer is blowin’ in the wind.’