Nobel Prizes in literature embody our darkest divides

"You know it was we who protected you from the Asian hordes for centuries. And without us you would still be eating with your fingers." So declares a character defending the Serbs (and their attendant massacres) in author Peter Handke's war play "Voyage by Dugout." While these are the words of a character, that character's creator, Handke, famously spoke at the 2006 funeral of Serb dictator and war criminal Slobodan Milosevic -- and has now been awarded the 2019 Nobel Prize for Literature, to the consternation of many.

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