A Nobel Prize for Bob Dylan? Some Would Bet On It

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Bob Dylan as a Nobel Prize winner likely isn’t a common conversation in mainstream America.

But there is no questioning the singer’s impact on pop culture, from the 1960s until now. And that is what has given the Nobel Prize for Literature an interesting option in the discussions leading up to the Thursday announcement of the winner.

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The Guardian reports a sudden surge on betting for Dylan— and this isn’t his first nomination, mind you. The Ladbrokes gambling company has him as the fourth favorite to win the award, with his chances now improving to 10/1. Dylan’s lifetime of lyrical work has already started to gain international attention — just look at his Pulitzer Prize Special Citation and Award from 2008 and the nomination this summer for the Neustadt International Prize for Literature.

While still trailing Syrian poet Adonis, Swedish poet Tomas Tranströmer and Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami as favorites for the Nobel, just being in the same conversation as them gives pop culture purists hope that words that resonate with the common man can compete with those not as well known, even in the academic world. How many of you have a working knowledge of the literary writing of the three other names in this paragraph, but could happily recite some Dylan lyrics?

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Tim Newcomb is a contributor for TIME. Find him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.