Bob Dylan finally accepted his Nobel Prize for Literature in early April, and now, he has the full-length acceptance speech — or “Nobel Lecture” — to go along with it.
The 27-minute clip, which you can listen to above, was recorded in Los Angeles on Sunday and published by the Nobel Foundation on Monday.
“When I received the Nobel Prize for Literature, I got to wondering exactly how my songs related to literature,” begins Dylan. “I wanted to reflect on that and see where the connection was. I’m going try and articulate that to you, but it will most likely go in a roundabout way.”
Nobel lectures are part of an annual tradition that sees the winners of their respective Nobel prizes present “lectures” leading up to the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony on Dec. 10. While lectures are usually delivered in the week before, there have been laureates who’ve given their lectures after the fact. The Nobel Foundation rules for what can consist of a lecture are quite flexible, with laureates being invited to deliver everything from a short speech, a performance, a video broadcast, and or even a song. The only hard and fast rule Dylan had to abide by was presenting his lecture by June 10, or risk losing his prize money.
Dylan had previously refused to acknowledge not only that he’d won the award “for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition” but also whether he would be accepting it at the prize giving ceremony.
You can hear Dylan’s entire Nobel Prize lecture above.