The Swedish Academy has announced there will be no Nobel Prize for Literature laureate this year after an academy member quit over sexual assault allegations against her husband.

The Swedish Academy in Stockholm

The Swedish Academy in Stockholm Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

The Swedish Academy announced on Friday it would not declare a Nobel Prize for Literature winner this year due to a sex scandal involving a man with whom it is linked.

The decision was made after a series of sexual assault allegations were made against Jean-Claude Arnault, the husband of academy member Katarina Frostenson. The academy issued a statement following a meeting on Thursday, saying the decision was made in light of the reduced public confidence in it. The academy will instead declare two winners in 2019.

“The crisis in the Swedish Academy has adversely affected the Nobel Prize,” said Carl-Henrik Heldin, the Chairman of the Nobel Foundation board. “Their decision underscores the seriousness of the situation and will help safeguard the long-term reputation of the Nobel Prize. None of this impacts the awarding of the 2018 Nobel prizes in other prize categories.”

The academy was established in 1786 by Swedish king Gustav III. Friday’s announcement marks the first time since 1949 that the prestigious prize is not awarded.