The correspondence between the Norwegian Alexander Kielland and the Danish Drewsen family can be read as a drama about human passions in the lives of two married couples; the Danish novelist Henrik Pontoppidan's letters to various Scandinavian fellow-writers reflect literary and cultural history in the making; Knut Hamsun
's dislike of most countries, including his native Norway, is obvious from his many prolonged stays in his favourite Denmark (Copenhagen had been instrumental in launching Hamsun
on the literary scene).
Directed, written by M, Giese, based on the novel by Knut Hamsun
. Camera (color, digital video), Jonathon Millman; editor, Sam Citron; production designer, Joshua Culp.
Written at the same moment of literary history when Henry James was writing its aesthetic opposite, The Portrait of a Lady, Machado de Assis's novel ("it was a novel for some and wasn't for others," he remarked in the prologue to the third edition) belongs to a long line of brilliantly odd and (relatively) outrageous works like Laurence Sterne's Tristram Shandy and Xavier de Maistre's Voyage Around My Room, both of which Bras Cubas (not Machado now) acknowledges in his opening "To the Reader." I begin the line at Aristophanes, including the Dostoyevsky of Notes From Underground, the Hamsun
of Hunger, the Beckett of Malone Dies, and end with Donald Barthelme, Barry Hannah's incomparable Ray and Thomas McGuane's seriously undervalued Panama.
Later examples are Knut Hamsun
's Hunger (1890) and Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward, Angel (1929).
Boccaccio, Petronius, Rabelais, Whitman, Emerson, Thoreau Maeterlinck, Romain Rolland, Plotinus, Heraclitus, Nietzsche Dostoievsky (and other Russian writers of the Nineteenth Century), the ancient Greek dramatists, the Elizabethan dramatists (excluding Shakespeare), Theodore Dreiser, Knut Hamsun
Cioran, Knut Hamsun
, Maria Tsvetaeva, among others--whom you call the "dear departed." Are you inscribing yourself in a certain tradition?
Bad translations, his similarity to Dickens and Lawrence, and his support for Nazism in his native Norway are among the reasons suggested to explain why Hamsun
(1859-1952) has never been popular in English speaking countries, says Lyngstad (emeritus English, New Jersey Institute of Technology).
In Sverre Lyngstad's new translation of Knut Hamsun
's 1912 novel, a fiftyish narrator leaves the isolation of his idyllic forest retreat for an alpine tourist resort, where he meets Miss Ingeborg Torsen, an educated and attractive young schoolteacher.
Ezra Pound, Knut Hamsun
, Curzio Malaparte, and even Gottfried Benn (whose "Answer to the Literary Emigrants"  remains the most eloquent excuse for political blindness ever written) have long been embraced by the literary canon.