Bob Dylan criticised as ‘impolite and arrogant’ by Nobel academy member – The Guardian

A prominent member of the academy that awards the Nobel literature prize has described this year’s laureate, Bob Dylan, as arrogant, citing his total silence since the award was announced last week.

The US singer-songwriter has not responded to repeated phone calls from the Swedish Academy, nor reacted in any way in public to the news.

“It’s impolite and arrogant,” said the academy member, Swedish writer Per Wastberg, in comments aired on SVT public television.

How is this arrogant? Bob Dylan is a very public person who likes to remain private. He puts himself onstage about a hundred times a year, but shuns interviews and public events. He never asked for this prize, and certainly doesn’t need it.

What if they had attributed the prize to J. D. Salinger, when he was alive, and Salinger ignored it? As an author who was famously reclusive, no one would have been surprised. I think people are mistaking Dylan’s public persona as a performer for the way he might be expected to act off stage.

No, the arrogant ones are the members of the Swedish Academy who expected Dylan to fawn after the prize was announced.

Source: Bob Dylan criticised as ‘impolite and arrogant’ by Nobel academy member | Music | The Guardian

16 thoughts on “Bob Dylan criticised as ‘impolite and arrogant’ by Nobel academy member – The Guardian

  1. This IS an arrogant behavior! Some people doesn’t get it. It’s a matter of a few minutes to contact the Swedish Nobel Academy (by phone), for example. Nobody can be THAT busy not to make a short phone call. But Dylan surely wants the prize money…..

  2. This IS an arrogant behavior! Some people doesn’t get it. It’s a matter of a few minutes to contact the Swedish Nobel Academy (by phone), for example. Nobody can be THAT busy not to make a short phone call. But Dylan surely wants the prize money…..

  3. I usually agree with you Kirk and share a lot of your music interests, including Dylan. But his response to this award is certainly impolite at least. While he never asked for this award, he must be cognizant that this is a “big deal” in the arena of extraordinary achievement recognition. Even Brando let the Oscars know that he would be sending a surrogate to attend.
    This tortured artist thing only goes so far!

  4. I usually agree with you Kirk and share a lot of your music interests, including Dylan. But his response to this award is certainly impolite at least. While he never asked for this award, he must be cognizant that this is a “big deal” in the arena of extraordinary achievement recognition. Even Brando let the Oscars know that he would be sending a surrogate to attend.
    This tortured artist thing only goes so far!

  5. Have to disagree with you on this one. I’m a Dylan fan, and if he doesn’t want the Nobel, that’s fine, he can follow the example of Sartre and refuse it. But by remaining silent, he’s stirring up unneeded confusion and criticism. Seems childish.

    • What about all the criticism he’s getting for being given the award? Perhaps he’s insulted by the way many people are reacting, and doesn’t want to be bothered by the whole thing.

  6. Have to disagree with you on this one. I’m a Dylan fan, and if he doesn’t want the Nobel, that’s fine, he can follow the example of Sartre and refuse it. But by remaining silent, he’s stirring up unneeded confusion and criticism. Seems childish.

    • What about all the criticism he’s getting for being given the award? Perhaps he’s insulted by the way many people are reacting, and doesn’t want to be bothered by the whole thing.

  7. Kirk, as ever, you’re mostly right, though ‘expecting to fawn’ over eggs the pudding.

    Dylan has ZERO obligation to Nobel. Zero. And no reaction from him cannot be interpreted one way or another by we onlookers.
    Case,
    Closed.

    Anyone calling him arrogant probably moan if they don’t get thank you’s for opening doors too.

    There’s too much judging here. And what’s the rush anyway?
    Where on earth do you all find the time to berate a man for not responding to a pointless award as he continues his tour obligations?

    Dylan has his priorities in order.

    Now go and spend your time as wisely.

  8. Kirk, as ever, you’re mostly right, though ‘expecting to fawn’ over eggs the pudding.

    Dylan has ZERO obligation to Nobel. Zero. And no reaction from him cannot be interpreted one way or another by we onlookers.
    Case,
    Closed.

    Anyone calling him arrogant probably moan if they don’t get thank you’s for opening doors too.

    There’s too much judging here. And what’s the rush anyway?
    Where on earth do you all find the time to berate a man for not responding to a pointless award as he continues his tour obligations?

    Dylan has his priorities in order.

    Now go and spend your time as wisely.

  9. You should really change your headline. *One* punkass member of the Swedish Academy has crticized Bob, but the Academy itself has repeatedly said it’s up to Dylan how he responds.

    “The Swedish Academy moved quickly on Saturday to distance itself from Mr. Wastberg’s remarks. Ms. Danius said in a statement that every person awarded a Nobel Prize can make his or her own decision about how to respond.

    “’The Swedish Academy has never held a view on a prizewinner’s decision in this context, neither will it now, regardless of the decision reached,’ the statement said. “A member of the academy, Per Wastberg, has publicly expressed his disappointment at Bob Dylan’s omitted response. This is Mr. Wastberg’s private opinion and is not to be taken as the official standpoint of the Swedish Academy.'”

    • Hal has spoken ( or quoted, to be more precise ) and wisely, I might add.
      Now is it case closed…?

      Such a dreary topic…..can we move on?

      (Yes, I know it’s not my blog, next headline, “Isn’t Sunhouse full of himself…”)

  10. You should really change your headline. *One* punkass member of the Swedish Academy has crticized Bob, but the Academy itself has repeatedly said it’s up to Dylan how he responds.

    “The Swedish Academy moved quickly on Saturday to distance itself from Mr. Wastberg’s remarks. Ms. Danius said in a statement that every person awarded a Nobel Prize can make his or her own decision about how to respond.

    “’The Swedish Academy has never held a view on a prizewinner’s decision in this context, neither will it now, regardless of the decision reached,’ the statement said. “A member of the academy, Per Wastberg, has publicly expressed his disappointment at Bob Dylan’s omitted response. This is Mr. Wastberg’s private opinion and is not to be taken as the official standpoint of the Swedish Academy.'”

    • Hal has spoken ( or quoted, to be more precise ) and wisely, I might add.
      Now is it case closed…?

      Such a dreary topic…..can we move on?

      (Yes, I know it’s not my blog, next headline, “Isn’t Sunhouse full of himself…”)

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