Vigdis Hjorth has been awarded the Dobloug Prize for 2018 along with lyricist Helge Torvund.
The prize consists of a calligraphic diploma and a prize of 200 000 Swedish kroner.
Vigdis Hjorth has published over 30 books and has previously received The Gyldendal Prize in 2011, The Norwegian Critics’ Prize in 2012, Brage’s Honorary Award and The Amalie Skram Prize in 2014, The Aschehoug Prize in 2015, The Norwegian Booksellers' Prize and The Norwegian Critics’ Prize in 2016.
The jury for the Dobloug Prize said the following about Vigdis Hjorth:
This author has exhibited an active, bordering on activist, an authorship where she has continuously expanded her field. Never predictable, never indifferent in her encounters with love, the society she describes and the life-styles into which the characters in her books are placed.
She writes about mothers who drink, about imprisonment, about lies and forgiveness, about divorce, bitterness, and throughout her entire authorship, has displayed a strong will to examine life-defining events, involving the young girl, the adolescent girl, and the adult woman, through an non dogmatic feminist approach, with regard to expectations and identity.
She portrays often-confused individuals, who have power and energy and insight, yet are still on the verge of “tearing at the seams.” With a talent for pointed statements and descriptions of precarious situations, her prose sometimes resembles acrobatic and performed improvisations – it's wild, but also surprisingly, almost choreographically controlled. With a distinct authenticity and oral precision, she takes the reader from sore point to sore point, and is a master when pointing at areas where the laughter is both painful and liberating.
The author's distinctive signature is unsettling, confrontational, deadly serious, but also hilariously funny and sharp. Her style could possibly be called “speeded” – to use the expression in the most positive sense – because the tempo is high in all of her books, the narrators are almost breathless, hurried, as if fighting for their lives.
The Dobloug Prize
The Dobloug Prize was founded in 1938 on the basis of a testamentary gift from the Norwegian businessman Birger Dobloug to the Swedish Academy, which established a fund in his name.
The Norwegian Dobloug Committee works on behalf of the Swedish Academy, which approves the committee's proposals for prize recipients. The Norwegian committee this year consisted of the author Mona Høvring, representing the Norwegian Authors Association; Per Thomas Andersen, professor of Nordic literature at the University of Oslo; and Hans H. Skei, retired professor of literature, representing The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.