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The Dreams We Carry: New Writing from Norway

September 2019

Image: Per Kristian Nygård, "Not Red But Green," at NoPlace Gallery, Oslo, Norway 2014. Photo by Jason Olav Benjamin Havneraas. Courtesy of the artist.

Norway is the richest country in Europe, but not everyone shares in the wealth. This month we present writing from Norway that probes the complexities, frustrations, and messiness underneath the country’s pristine image. From furious mothers to tender husbands, in class conflict and sibling tensions, the characters here reveal plans derailed and dreams unrealized. Monica Isakstuen channels a wife and mother’s uncontainable rage, while musician and singer-songwriter Levi Henriksen follows the poignant twilight of a bus driver’s marriage. Linn Strømsborg’s new graduate finds herself reliving her adolescence, and Roskva Koritzinsky’s alienated dancer sleepwalks through a school year haunted by a serial killer’s trial. Mona Hǿvring shows sisters negotiating their relationship after a break and a breakdown; Jan Kristoffer Dale joins a weekend poker trip that literally goes off track; and Andreas Tjernshaugen exposes the terrible costs of the Norwegian whaling industry. US poet Rebecca Dinerstein Knight, who spent two years in Norway, reflects on speaking love while speaking Norwegian. And guest editor Kari Dickson sets the pieces in social and cultural context in her introduction. The translations have been published with the financial support of NORLA.