Tuesday, December 11, 2007

On not winning the Nobel Prize---Doris Lessing

Doris Lessing was awarded the 2007 Nobel Prize in Literature. So you figure she can write. And man, can she write. Here’s the text of Doris Lessing’s Nobel Lecture from last week (I came upon this via 3QuarksDaily and The Guardian, so thanks to them).

I think she doesn’t completely credit the internet with the power that it has to inform. But maybe she means that, like TV, we will end up using it as a toy of mass distraction rather than as powerful information tool.

The lecture is a bit long but it makes for beautiful reading. It never ceases to amaze me how great writers can paint such vivid pictures so effortlessly with words. But it goes beyond the technique and art of writing. The greatest writers are great philosophers. They have the ability to take all the sorrow, injustice and tragedy in the human experience and distill from it simple yet quintessential truths about the human spirit. Then, of course, they communicate it to us in such beautiful ways.

Take the time to read it. If you stick with it to the end, you will be rewarded.

Print this post

No comments: