Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Nobel laureate blasts Mugabe for depriving nation of books

December 09, 2007|From Reuters

STOCKHOLM — Nobel prize-winning author Doris Lessing accused Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe of depriving people of the chance to buy books or write them because of his "reign of terror."

In her Nobel laureate lecture, Lessing said rampant inflation in Zimbabwe, the world's highest at nearly 8,000%, meant an English paperback cost several years' wages, putting books out of reach.

"It is said that a people gets the government it deserves, but I do not think it is true of Zimbabwe," she said in a speech read Friday at the Swedish Academy by her British publisher, Nicholas Pearson.

The 88-year-old novelist, who grew up in what was then Southern Rhodesia and is now Zimbabwe, was unable to deliver the traditional address in person and will not attend the prize ceremony because of poor health.

Mugabe accuses his Western foes of sabotaging the country's economy in retaliation for his seizure of white-owned commercial farms for blacks.

The Zimbabwean president is in Lisbon this weekend to attend the Africa-European Union leaders' summit, and his presence has drawn criticism.

The lectures by each laureate are a centerpiece of the Nobel Week celebrations, which will culminate with formal award ceremonies in Stockholm and Oslo on Monday.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|