Alice Munro too ill to receive Nobel Prize in Sweden

The 82-year-old writer is too frail to travel

Published October 18, 2013 4:37PM (EDT)

Canadian writer Alice Munro, who is the nation's first female writer to win the Nobel Prize for literature, will not be able to travel to Sweden for the ceremony because of poor health, reports the Toronto Star.

“Her health is simply not good enough,” Swedish Academy head Peter Englund said in a blog post. “All involved, including Mrs. Munro herself, regret this.”

Munro, who in 2009 revealed that she'd undergone coronary bypass surgery and had battled with cancer, reportedly told Englund that “I’m an old woman, and my health is frail."

The Nobel committee has likened Munro to Russian short story great Anton Chekhov, calling her the "master of the contemporary short story." The ceremony will be held on Dec. 10 and "No decision has yet been made about who will receive the Nobel Prize in Literature on her behalf,” according to the Nobel Prize website.

The 82-year-old writer recently retired from writing, saying she's "becoming very sociable."

By Prachi Gupta

Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at

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