The prose work of the Polish exile writer Bronisław Świderski, who has been living in Denmark since 1970, explores strangeness – an important topic of modern literature. Świderski addresses strangeness not only as an individual experience, but also as a social problem. In this article, I would like to take a closer look at the analysis of foreignness and the psyche of an immigrant in Świderski’s award-winning novel Słowa obcego (1998). From many problems addressed in the novel, which are directly or indirectly connected with strangeness, I want to take out one aspect. At this point I will be interested in the relationship between language (discourse) and strangeness.
In this article I analyze the autobiographical novel Längta hem. Om ett missionärsbarn i Kongo (2003) by Lennart Hagerfors in order to understand how otherness is presented and how it is linked to the status of migration and being Swedish. I argue that the novel shows two distinct forms of otherness. The first is on the personal and individual level of the protagonist that is caused by his migration from Sweden to Congo. The other is on a cultural and national level, which situates Sweden in between the Congolese and French culture. While the first personal form of strangeness is viewed as problematic and must be overcome, the second form can be read as an expression of the positive Swedish self-image that situates Sweden outside of Europe’s colonial history and therefore posits Sweden as a type of humanitarian Great Power or global conscience.
Introducing life and work of Janina Katz, the article undertakes an analysis and interpretation of her second novel, the autofictional Putska. Born on the second of March 1939, Katz belonged to a renowned Jewish family with numerous members, of whom, however, only her mother and she survived the Second World War. Their extraordinary family history may be traced in practically all of Katz’ writings, as can her Jewish cultural heritage. The novel Putska is no exception. Its composition, characters and the image it gives of life in Cracow are examined in order to make understandable the protagonist’s decision to exile herself from Poland and migrate to Denmark, much like the author herself. 1969, having fled from that revival of anti-Semite harassment which was launched by the political leadership of socialist Poland, Katz was granted asylum in Denmark, where she soon learned the language to a perfection which enabled her to unfold a widely acknowledged literary work which does not cease to speak of her unique life experience. Central perspectives on her life and work include migration, autobiography, Jewishness and social and cultural history of Poland.
The paper presents a close-reading of the Greenlandic author Niviaq Korneliussen’s novel Homo sapienne (2014) with the aim of answering the question, whether it can be defined as a postnational or a migration novel, according to the definitions presented by Elisabeth Oxfeldt and Søren Frank. To this end four different categories: the hybrid, the (post)colonial, the national and the global are applied in the analysis with the primary focus on examining how the dominating narratives of Greenlandicness are confirmed, challenged or rejected in the novel, as well as how the novel’s language, structure and narrative strategies not only contribute to a new understanding of the genre, but of the issues in question in general.
This article analyses explicit references to music in the novels of the Danish-Bosnian writer Alen Mešković Ukulele-jam (2011) and Enmandstelt (2016). Mešković is a traditional representative of migration literature because he experienced migration himself and reflects his experiences in his work. Music plays a crucial role in both his novels and appears primarily in the form of explicit references to various Yugoslavian and English singers and songs on the text level. These references work in various ways: they emphasize the difference between East and West, characterize the protagonist, illustrate the atmosphere of the situation, enable the reader to identify with the characters and, last but not least, support the authentic tone of the text, which is a typical feature of migration literature.
This article examines what one might call migration literary features in the Jewish Norwegian author Eva Scheer’s novel Vi bygger i sand (1948). I will investigate themes and sections that in different ways emphasize the migration experience of the characters within the novel. The focal point of the analysis is the migration experience in itself, what it means to be forced to move from one country to another and having to learn how to live in a different country and community, perceived identity and identity issues, prejudices, anti-Semitism and the fear of persecution. Because of this chosen focal point, I will use postcolonial theory in my reading of the novel, emphasizing Homi K. Bhabha’s concepts of mimicry and hybridity. What does it mean to belong to a nation? Is it possible to become Norwegian while keeping parts of your homeland’s identity? With the altered migration pattern of recent decades, such issues make the novel relevant even today.
Henri Nathansen’s highly successful bildungsroman Af Hugo Davids Liv, first published in 1917, tells the story of its Jewish protagonist from cradle to grave – with obstacles, adventures and challenges. But much more so, Nathansen offers a multi-layered narration of what it could mean to be a “noble” Jew. Providing a multitude of answers to that question, Af Hugo Davids Liv refuses any definition and thus opens a “third space” in which ambiguous and grained narrations of migration can take place, flourish and be understood in their own right. The article focuses on exploring these narrative interstices and spaces of in-betweenness and in doing so also (re-)discovers Nathansen’s unique way of telling migration as socially always imminent.
The aim of this paper is to investigate how second language speakers of Norwegian (henceforth Norwegian L2 speakers) differ in their use of modality expressions from native speakers (L1 speakers). As modality is a very broad subject, the main focus of the study is limited to one-word modal adverbs, such as kanskje ‘maybe’, and modal particles such as jo. The study compares the frequency of using different types of modal adverbials by L1 and L2 speakers, and their syntactic position. The implications of the study are two-fold. First of all, it is to contribute to the studies of the field of modality in Norwegian. The second implication is didactic, as describing the use of modal adverbials in Norwegian conversation can help devise right teaching materials to allow second language users achieve a more native-like competence in this respect.
The Hungarian literary translator Henrik Hajdu (1890–1969) was one of the most extraordinary persons in the history of translating Scandinavian literature into Hungarian. Aside his activity as a translator from Norwegian and Swedish, Hajdu was also an important promoter of Danish authors of the 19th and 20th century. He held lectures on Nordic culture and literature, wrote reviews in prominent Hungarian journals and maintained regular contact to many of the Scandinavian publishers, writers, dramatists and poets. He translated novels by Henrik Pontoppidan, Martin Andersen Nexø and Sigrid Undset, made an edition of Ibsen's complete works and a great amount of short stories and poems. His oeuvre numbers about a hundred separate publications. This paper focuses on how he contributed to the general acceptance and reception of Danish literary works written between 1850 and 1930 among the Hungarian readers.