A NOVELIST who lived in Brighton has been awarded the Nobel prize in literature.

Abdulrazak Gurnah, who spent a time living in the city, was awarded the prize for his “uncompromising and compassionate penetration of the effects of colonialism and the fate of the refugee in the gulf between cultures and continents”.

Abdulrazak was born on the island of Zanzibar off the coast of East Africa, but has lived in England for most of his life.

He came to the country as a student in 1968 and has recently retired from teaching at the University of Kent.

His latest novels are Desertion which was published in 2005, and was shortlisted for a 2006 Commonwealth Writers Prize, and The Last Gift, which was published in 2011.

The Nobel prize for literature has been awarded 118 times, with 16 going to women, seven of which have come since the turn of the century.

Organised by the Swedish academy, a cultural institution, the winner of the receives 10 million Swedish krona - £840,000 - for their outstanding work in the field of literature.

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