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Sofi Oksanen has won the Nordic Council Literature Prize 2010

The Finnish author Sofi Oksanen has won the Nordic Council Literature Prize 2010 for her work 'Puhdistus' ('Cleasning').

Toni Härkönen

Sofi Oksanen (born 1977) shows her full strength with her third novel 'Puhdistus'. In a rich and expressive language she weaves a specific historical event, the Soviet occupation of Estonia, with a burning topical global contemporary theme - trafficking around the Baltic Sea.

The Adjudication Committee wrote:

"Sofi Oksanen's novel 'Puhdistus' ('Cleansing') takes place in two periods of time in Estonia, but its themes of love, treachery, power and powerlessness are timeless. 'Puhdistus' vibrates with tension: unspoken secrets and deeply shameful deeds stretch out across the book like a web and compel the reader to keep reading. With a rare precise and apposite language Oksanen describes what history does to individuals and history's pervasion in the present."

The Literature Prize, worth DKK 350,000, will be presented to Sofi Oksanen at the beginning of November 2010 during the Nordic Council Session in Reykjavik. The Nordic Council Literature Prize has been awarded since 1962.

Further information:

Eva Smekal, Secretary of the Adjudication Committee,
+46 70 671 0432

Dan Alvarson +46 70 231 35 72

Media contact: Karin Arvidsson, Head of Communication, Nordic Council +45 21 71 71 45,