U.S. author Philip Roth has been named winner of Spain's 2012 Prince of Asturias prize for literature in recognition of his formidable contribution to American literature.

Prize organizers said Wednesday Roth's narrative work forms "part of the great American novel, in the tradition of Dos Passos, Scott Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Faulkner, Bellow and Malamud." 

Wednesday's award is one of eight handed out yearly by a foundation named for Spain's Crown Prince Felipe. Others categories include arts, sports and scientific research.

The 79-year-old Roth, from Newark New Jersey, is one of America's most renowned authors. Among his most popular books are, Portnoy's Complaint, American Pastoral and The Human Stain.