Posts tagged ‘Icelandic’

Independent People

Review by Andrew Murray Scott

Originally published in two volumes in the decade preceding Iceland’s transition from home rule, granted by Denmark in 1874, to full independence in 1944, this book appeared two years after Grassic Gibbon’s Sunset Song and in the same year as Grey Granite and has a lot in common with themes and techniques familiar from the three volumes of the Scots Quair.

The author, Halldór Laxness, was a socialist and (at the time of writing Independent People) an admirer of the Soviet system, so this is an indictment and a vivid and accurate depiction of the struggles of rural peasants in early  20th-century Iceland. (more…)

March 26, 2012 at 8:40 am Leave a comment

Halldór Laxness

Halldór Laxness was the pen name of Halldór Gudjónsson, an Icelandic writer who was born in Reykavík in 1902. After growing up on the family farm, he travelled to Europe and there converted to Catholicism and joined a monastery. He became dissatisfied with this and, while in the USA during the Depression, turned to Communism, also returning to Iceland. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1955 and his novels include Salka Valka, Independent People, Iceland’s Bell and The Atom Station. Laxness died in 1998.

March 26, 2012 at 8:35 am Leave a comment

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