I guess I'd better get my twopenn'orth in on the subject du jour - the sensational news that Bob Dylan has won the Nobel Prize for Literature. This is, if nothing else, a capital joke (who said the Swedes have no sense of humour?) and I'm sure Dylan will take it in that spirit. This particular Nobel prize has long been one kind of joke, and now it is another.
Though I yield to no man (unless he is called Bryan Appleyard) in my admiration for Dylan's work, I have not for a very long time mistaken that work for literature. Dylan is a songwriter of rare, indeed unique, genius, but songs are what he writes - not poems, not literature (pace Christopher Ricks). It's great that he has won, but probably better to think that what he's won is the Nobel Prize for Bobness. It was high time.