Portfolio

‘Slow prose’ in the age of quarantining

In the last decade, Norwegians appear to have become connoisseurs of unhurried culture, beginning with the introduction of ‘slow-TV’ in 2009, when we discovered that live footage from a camera strapped to a moving train made for spellbinding television. Readers might place Jon Fosse’s latest novel The Other Name: Septology I-II in the same category of entertainment … Continue reading ‘Slow prose’ in the age of quarantining

Autofiction at war: why ‘revenge novels’ are taking off in Norway

Bestselling authors Karl Ove Knausgaard and Vigdis Hjorth have had family members reply to their autobiographical books with their own. But where does it end? If the rise of autofiction over the past five years has led English readers to wonder whether their understanding of the novel is outdated, Norwegian readers, who are far more … Continue reading Autofiction at war: why ‘revenge novels’ are taking off in Norway

Love hurts

It is always strange when a foreign book published more than 20 years ago is suddenly picked up by an English-language publisher and goes on to receive rave reviews. This happened recently with the book Love by Hanne Ørstavik, a Norwegian author who, with numerous novels, essays and short stories under her belt, has long … Continue reading Love hurts

George Szirtes on the Nordic Poetry Festival: ‘The language in which you write should remain a little strange.’

The first ever Nordic Poetry Festival (NPF) took place in October this year. This ambitious debut spanned five events across three cities, and featured the work of 21 avant-garde Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, Finnish, Icelandic and Sami poets. One of these events, which took place at the National Centre for Writing in Norwich, saw the Nordic … Continue reading George Szirtes on the Nordic Poetry Festival: ‘The language in which you write should remain a little strange.’