Japan Author Haruki Murakami Wins Spain’s Prestigious Award

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Haruki Murakami, 2021

PARIS, May 24 (Jiji Press) — Renowned Japanese writer Haruki Murakami has won this year’s Princess of Asturias Award for Literature, Spain’s Princess of Asturias Foundation said Wednesday.

“Expressed in different genres, his voice has influenced considerably diverse generations,” the jury at the foundation said. “Haruki Murakami is one of contemporary literature’s major long-distance runners.”

The prestigious Spanish prizes are usually presented at a ceremony held in Oviedo, northern Spain, in October.

The jury praised “the uniqueness of his literature, its universal scope and ability to reconcile Japanese tradition and the legacy of Western culture in an ambitious and innovative narrative.”

His narrative “has managed to express some of the great themes and conflicts of our time: loneliness, existential uncertainty, terrorism and dehumanization in big cities, as well as the care of one’s body and his own reflections on the creative process,” the jury stated.

Murakami, whose works include “Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World” and “Norwegian Wood,” has long been in the list of potential winners of the Nobel Prize in Literature.

The Princess of Asturias Awards also cover such categories as social sciences and sports. This year’s award for the arts went to U.S. actress Meryl Streep.

Japanese architect Shigeru Ban won last year’s award for concord.