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JAPAN AUTHOR GETS NOBEL LITERATURE PRIZE

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With the brain-damaged son who inspired him looking on, Japanese author Kenzaburo Oe received the Nobel literature prize Saturday. Eight others took Nobel prizes for science and economics.

At a solemn ceremony in Stockholm's Concert House, King Carl XVI Gustaf handed gold medals and prize checks to Oe and the Nobel laureates in medicine, physics, chemistry and economics. Each prize is worth $931,000.As a fire in a metal flame-holder illuminated the Nordic winter darkness outside, Oe, 59, approached the king on the blue-carpeted stage and received his literature prize.

He glanced at his 31-year-old son, Hikari, who inspired his work about overcoming the trauma of having a mentally impaired child.

Oe, in a brief acceptance speech at a banquet following the ceremony, paid tribute to European culture, particularly Nobel-winning Swedish author Selma Lagerlof.

"I fervently hope that my pursuit as a Japanese in literature and culture in some small measure will repay Western Europe. The prize perhaps gives such an opportunity," he said.

Americans Alfred G. Gilman and Martin Rodbell won the Nobel Prize in physiology-medicine for the discovery of how cells translate and act on signals with the help of G-proteins.

Gilman, 53 and the youngest of this year's laureates, works at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. Rodbell, 68, of Chapel Hill, N.C., is a scientist emeritus with the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.

American Clifford G. Shull and Canadian Bertram N. Brockhouse won the physics prize for development of neutron scattering methods used to study the inner workings of matter.

Brockhouse, 76, works at the McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, and Shull, 79, is at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass.

A Hungarian-born American, George A. Olah, 67, won the chemistry prize for revolutionizing methods of preserving and studying certain types of hydrocarbon molecules. He works at the Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

The economics prize was awarded to two Americans and a German for using ideas behind games like chess and poker to explain how markets and economies work.

The game theory was developed by Hungarian-born John C. Harsanyi, retired from the University of California at Berkeley; John F. Nash of Princeton University; and Reinhard Selten of the University of Bonn.

The Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science was created by the Bank of Sweden in 1968. All other Nobel Prizes were founded by Alfred Nobel, the Swedish inventor of dynamite. The prizes have been presented since 1901 on the Dec. 10 anniversary of his death.