by Deirdre Donahue, USA TODAY
Mo Yan, a 57-year-old Chinese writer, has won the 2012 Nobel Prize for Literature. The award, worth $1.2 million, was announced in Stockholm. The Swedish Academy praised Yan "who with hallucinatory realism merges folk tales, history and the contemporary."
One of China's most admired, popular and controversial writers, Yan is known for his depiction of Chinese rural life, particularly its women. His best known works include Frog, Big Breasts and Wide Hips, Red Sorghum (which adapted into a 1987 film) and Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out. Yan is the first Chinese citizen to win the prestigious prize but not the first Chinese writer. French émigré Gao Xingjian won in 2000.
Ironically, Mo Yan is a pseudonym meaning "Don't Speak." His real name is Guan Moye.