French author Annie Ernaux on Thursday won the 2022 Nobel Prize in Literature for the “courage and clinical acuity with which she uncovers the roots, estrangements and collective restraints of personal memory”.

Ernaux is known for her autobiographical works that touch upon themes of gender equality and class disparities.

The Nobel Prize committee said that her book L’occupation (the occupation) dissects the “social mythology” of romantic love.

“On the basis of notes in a diary recording her abandonment by a lover, she both confesses and attacks a self-image built on stereotypes,” it said. “Writing becomes a sharp weapon dissecting truth.”

The Nobel Prize committee added that Ernaux has written over 30 literary works, in which she “examines a life marked by strong disparities regarding gender, language and class”.

Ernaux’s writing is uncompromising and written in plain language, the committee said.

“With great courage and clinical acuity, Annie Ernaux reveals the agony of the experience of class, describing shame, humiliation, jealousy or inability to see who you are, she has achieved something admirable and enduring,” it added.

Ernaux’s first book, Les Armoires Vides (Cleaned Out) was published in 1974. Her books Les Années (The Years) and L’Événement (Happening) gave her international recognition.

The literature award was the fourth Nobel given this week. The awards for chemistry, physics and medicine were awarded earlier this week.

The remaining two categories are peace and economics.

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