Bob Dylan wins 2016 Nobel Prize for Literature

Posted at 9:40 AM, Oct 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-13 10:41:19-04

Bob Dylan can now add "Nobel prize winner" to his long list of accomplishments.

The iconic singer/songwriter was awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize for Literature on Thursday for "having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition."

He's the first American to be given the prestigious honor since novelist Toni Morrison won in 1993.

Many were surprised to hear that Dylan won, since the prize is normally given to novelists, poets and authors.

SEE MORE: A Lot Of America's Nobel Prize Winners Weren't Born In This Country

But the Swedish Academy is standing by its decision.

"He is a great poet. He is a great poet in the English-speaking tradition, and he is a wonderful sampler, a very original sampler," the Swedish Academy's permanent secretary told reporters.

And many poets and musicians have praised his lyrics in the past.

As former Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman wrote in 2013, "His lyricism is exquisite; his concerns and subjects are demonstrably timeless; and few poets of any era have seen their work bear more influence."

Dylan and the other recipients of this year's Nobel prizes will officially receive them at a ceremony in December.

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