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Svetlana Alexievich of Belarus wins 2015 Nobel Prize in literature

Belarusian writer Svetlana Alexievich won the Nobel Prize in literature Thursday for works that the prize judges called “a monument to suffering and courage.”

By: AP | Stockholm |
Updated: October 8, 2015 9:30:58 pm
In this photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014, Belarusian journalist Svetlana Alexievich speaks in Minsk, Belarus. Belarusian writer Svetlana Alexievich won the Nobel Prize in literature Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015, for works that the prize judges called "a monument to suffering and courage." (AP Photo/Sergei Grits) Belarusian writer and journalist Svetlana Alexievich won the Nobel Prize in literature on Thursday, for works that the prize judges called “a monument to suffering and courage.” (Source: AP Photo)

Belarusian writer Svetlana Alexievich won the Nobel Prize in literature Thursday for works that the prize judges called “a monument to suffering and courage.”

Alexievich, 67, used the skills of a journalist to create literature chronicling the great tragedies of the Soviet Union and its collapse: World War II, the Soviet war in Afghanistan, the Chernobyl nuclear disaster and the suicides that ensued from the death of Communism.

Her first novel, “The Unwomanly Face of the War,” published in 1985 and based on the previously untold stories of women who had fought against the Nazi Germans, sold more than 2 million copies.

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Her books have been published in 19 countries. She also has written three plays and the screenplays for 21 documentary films. In its brief citation the Swedish Academy, cited Alexievich “for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time.”

Last year’s literature award went to French writer Patrick Modiano.

This year’s Nobel announcements continue with the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday and the economics award on Monday. All awards will be handed out on Dec. 10, the anniversary of prize founder Alfred Nobel’s death in 1896.

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