Naipaul did not deserve the "Nobel Prize"
Stabroek News
November 6, 2001

Dear Editor,

Sigmund Freud, the great 20th century philosopher, nearing the end of his life, said he never understood people. Can we really understand people? Why would any non-white person write anything positive of Vidia Naipaul? Why would anyone in this world think that Naipaul deserves the Nobel Prize?

Mr. Naipaul is a deeply disturbed human being who hates himself and hates the world. He is a man who has not, will not, and cannot contribute in a positive way to human civilization. If Tony Blair, the Prime Minister of London, was a narrow-minded, stupid, and angry human being as Naipaul is, he would have ordered his deportation from the UK after he grossly insulted Mr. Blair because the British PM said that Oxford University should take in more students from the working class sections of the UK. My own opinion is that he should have been deported for the depraved comments he made.

The Caribbean-born British based writer Carryl is absolutely right when he said that Naipaul writes a lot of nonsense. Naipaul's life is a sad comment on 20th century civilization. Here you have a silly, stupid man, writing a lot of nonsense about societies of the world, and he gets paid for it. To crown it all, they gave him the Nobel Prize. The prize founder must be turning in his grave. The Nobel Prize was conceived as recognition of the deeds of men and women who devote their time, energy and obligations to make the world a better place in which to live. It is an act of the worst type of indecency to give someone like Naipaul the Nobel Prize. Naipaul so hates himself and the world that he wants to bring it down not uplift it. How can anyone see his acquisition of the Nobel Prize as something positive?

The reason why he is tolerated in the UK is because he devastates non-white countries and praises white societies. It is in this context that you have to see why he got the Swedish award. Quite a few of his travel books are trenchant accusations against the Muslim world. If the award committee had given the title to a white critic of the Muslim world, then in the light of what is now taking place, it may have inflamed anti-Western passions in Islamic states. The award committee outsmarted the third world by giving it to a son of the third world who hates the cultures and peoples of that world. You could just imagine the cynicism of the awarders. "They (the third world) want a Nobel Prize winner, alright we will give them one; we'll give them Naipaul." And they must have been laughing ever since.

But if the white world of Western Europe and North America sees a purpose in Naipaul, how do you explain the positive reaction of the Trinidadian society when he got the Swedish accolade? The man has nothing but contempt for Trinidad, and thinks it is a piece of geographical nonsense on the map. Yet this very society is building a structure in his name. This is the worst case of national masochism ever seen in history.

It is indeed an unfair world. There are literally countless people working out there to help our world become a more decent community, yet all these people could be overlooked for a man whose literary and semantic insults should put him before the courts in many societies.

Naipaul goes to the third world, sees the weaknesses of these societies, writes about them, embellishing his facts. But he never writes about the same weaknesses he sees in white, developed societies. For example, he took up a visiting professorship at an Ivy League university in the US. The aristocratic students showed him no respect. When he told them he was VS. Naipaul, he got even worse treatment. At the end of his contract, Naipaul gave an interview to Time magazine about his experience in the US in which he ranted and raved about the racist nature of American society. And he never followed up on it. But if that bitter experience was obtained in a third world environment, it would have been encapsulated in a full length manuscript.

The Merchant/Ivory partnership resides in London. Maybe one day Naipaul will visit them with a proposal to make a movie out of his life. Boy that will really sell in Trinidad.

Yours faithfully,

Frederick Kissoon