Awarded: April 11, 2016
(b. March 28, 1936)
Mario Vargas Llosa was born in Arequipa, Peru on March 28, 1936. He is one of Latin America’s most prominent writers, and one of the authors in the forefront of the literary movement of the 1960s known as the Latin American Boom. In the words of literary scholar Randolph D. Pope, Mario Vargas Llosa “can tell a story and create a world with the apparent ease of a 19th-century master. He holds the attention of the reader and fires the imagination as Balzac, Dumas, or Victor Hugo did in their time.” Vargas Llosa has written prolifically throughout his life and has been a highly influential figure on the political and cultural stage of the Hispanic world for more than half a century. His plays have been performed in theaters from Lima to Madrid. His books have been translated into more than 30 languages. His other honors include the Nobel Prize, the Miguel de Cervantes Prize, the Príncipe de Asturias Prize, the Leopoldo Alas Book Prize, the National Prize for Best Novel in Peru, the Instituto Ítalo-Latino Americano de Roma Prize, the Ritz Paris Hemingway Award, and the PEN/Nabokov Award.