2. Herta Müller
The Romanian-born German novelist, poet, and essayist was the 2009 Nobel recipient. Müller has written the novels "The Appointment" and "The Land of Green Plums" depicting the ugly oppression of life in Romania under the regime of Communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. She was awarded the prize, said the Nobel committee, because of her "concentration of poetry and the frankness of prose."