The 2018 prize, delayed by one year after a sexual assault scandal rocked the award-giving Academy, went to Tokarczuk
Austria's Peter Handke won the 2019 Nobel Prize for Literature, and the postponed 2018 award went to Polish author Olga Tokarczuk, the Swedish Academy said on Thursday.
Two Nobels were awarded this year after last year's prize was postponed over a scandal that led to the husband of an Academy member being convicted of rape.
Since then, the organization has appointed new members and reformed some of its more arcane rules after a rare intervention by its royal patron, the king of Sweden.
The 2019 Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded to Austrian author Peter Handke, while the 2018 award, postponed last year due to a harassment scandal, was given to Polish author Olga Tokarczuk https://t.co/PWso0AyVMS pic.twitter.com/Rzwk87iwIF— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) October 10, 2019
Handke, 76, won the 2019 prize for "an influential work that with linguistic ingenuity has explored the periphery and the specificity of human experience," the Academy said in a statement.
The 2018 prize went to Tokarczuk for "a narrative imagination that with encyclopaedic passion represents the crossing of boundaries as a form of life."
Handke established himself as one of the most influential writers in Europe after World War Two, the Academy said, with a body of work that contains novels, essays, notebooks and dramatic works.
BREAKING NEWS:— The Nobel Prize (@NobelPrize) October 10, 2019
The Nobel Prize in Literature for 2018 is awarded to the Polish author Olga Tokarczuk. The Nobel Prize in Literature for 2019 is awarded to the Austrian author Peter Handke.#NobelPrize pic.twitter.com/CeKNz1oTSB
He is also known for co-writing the script of the critically-acclaimed 1987 film "Wings of Desire."
Tokarczuk, 57, trained as a psychologist before publishing her first novel in 1993. Since then, she has produced a steady and varied stream of works and her novel "Flight" won her the high-profile Man Booker International Prize last year. She was the first Polish author to do so.
She has courted controversy in her native Poland by touching on dark areas of the country's past that contrast with the version of history promoted by Poland's ruling nationalist party, Law and Justice (PiS).
Poland holds an election on Sunday that a PiS-led coalition is widely expected to win.