Nobel Prize

Herta Müller Wins Nobel Prize in Literature

Herta Müller, the Romanian-German author and poet, has won the 2009 Nobel Prize in Literature.

In its announcement, the Swedish Academy cited how she "depicts the dispossessed with the concentration of poetry and the soberness of prose."

Müller belonged to the German-speaking minority in Romania during communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescus' rule. She was banned from writing in her home country, but managed to flee to West Berlin in 1987.

Several of her novels describe her upbringing in the small German-speaking village of her birth, including Barefoot February from 1987.

Reached for comments just seconds after the announcement, Müller said she was "overwhelmed."

"I don't deserve this."

Radio Sweden's Ulla Engberg and Klaus Heilbronner discussed the win, and spoke to Swedish Radio cultural editor, Louise Epstein, who says it didn't come as a big surprise to her.

The announcement of who has won the Nobel Prize in Literature is naturally always closely followed by Sweden's publishers, if they have the writer on their books it can mean huge sales over the next few months. Radio Sweden spoke with Herta Müller's Swedish publisher, Camilla Nagler from Wahlström & Widstrand. She was naturally thrilled at Thursday's announcement.

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