World Bulletin / News Desk
Chinese writer Mo Yan won the 2012 Nobel prize for literature on Thursday for works which combine "hallucinatory realism" with folk tales, history and contemporary life grounded in his native land.
The prize, awarded by the Swedish Academy, is worth 8 million crowns ($1.2 million).
Mo, who grew up in Gaomi in Shandong province in the northeast of the country and whose parents were farmers, sets his works mainly in China.
"He has such a damn unique way of writing. If you read half a page of Mo Yan you immediately recognise it as him," said Peter Englund, head of the Academy.
He said Mo had been told of the award. Mo Yan is a pen name which means "Don't speak". His real name is Guan Moye.
"He was at home with his dad. He said he was overjoyed and terrified," Englund told Swedish television.
The award citation said Mo used a mixture of fantasy and reality, historical and social perspectives to create a world which was reminiscent of the writings of William Faulkner and Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
At the same time, he found a "departure point in old Chinese literature and in oral tradition", the Academy said.
Mo is best known in the West for "Red Sorghum", which portrayed the hardships endured by farmers in the early years of communist rule. His titles also include "Big Breasts and Wide Hips" and "The Republic of Wine".
The literature prize is the fourth of this year's crop of prizes, which were established in the will of Swedish dynamite inventor Alfred Nobel and awarded for the first time in 1901.
The writer was one of the favourites to win the award this year, according to British bookmaker Ladbrokes, along with Japanese author Haruki Murakami. ($1 = 6.5846 Swedish crowns)
Reports say Australia negotiating to send asylum seekers to Philippines in alleged multi-million dollar deal
Shiv Sena, Hindu nationalist party, force organizers to cancel Pakistani singer's concerts due to his nationality
A "civil nuclear deal" with Pakistan and the United States is on the horizon with representatives from both countries discussing options before Pakistani Prime Minster Nawaz Sharif visits Washington at the end of the month
Assistance is expected from four countries: China, Malaysia, Russia & Singapore
'Enough. Even war has rules,' Doctors Without Borders president says
Pakistani military spokesman saysin statement that allegations of Pakistani involvement in Kunduz attack are 'mischievous'
Two states agreed on submarines trade deal, entailing transfer of technology for submarine construction to Pakistan
'We have to provide our senior leadership options different than the current plan we are going with,' says Gen. Campbell
Humanitarian situation in the strategic northern city is thought to be difficult but the extent of what is needed remains unclear because of problems getting access
German chancellor held lengthy talks with the Indian prime minister on her first trip to New Delhi since Modi's right-wing party stormed to power
USgeneral says Afghan army called to eliminate the Taliban threat and several civilians were accidentally struck,
Father, three children reported to have been asleep inside house when three men armed with M-16 rifles barged in and fired on them
Local forces resist Taliban attempt to capture Maimana, week after temporary fall of Kunduz
Six parties won seats in the Kyrgyzstan legislature, all of them pro-Russian, in Sunday's vote
Doctors Without Borders put US under pressure as they wish to investigate Kunduz hospital bombing
Six political parties in total pass threshold to enter 120-member unicameral legislature