Hamsuns sultekunstner (Hamsun’s hunger artist) by Peer E. Sørenson, a professor emeritus from the Nordic Institute as well as Aarhus University, is his Danish-language book about Norwegian literature studies and international art history, free for a limited time courtesy of Aarhus University Press in Denmark.
This is their featured Danish-language Free Book of the Month selection for June. This lavishly-illustrated Danish-language book focuses on the late Norwegian Nobel Prize-winning author Knut Hamsun‘s famous novel Sult (Hunger) and its enduring artistic influence, which was international in scope and hailed as a precursor to certain 20th century modern literary styles.
Apparently this is specifically not an analysis of the actual novel, but instead concentrates on its reception and effect, which includes contributions to modernism & surrealism, and trickle-down influence on assorted later authors from around the world. It’s also illustrated with quite a lot of pictures of what are either artworks directly inspired by the novel and its themes, or the works of artists somehow influenced by it, in the author’s view.
Offered DRM-free worldwide through June, available directly from the university’s website.
Description (in Danish)
Knut Hamsuns debutroman Sult fra 1890 gjorde ham med et slag berømt. Andre forfattere kanoniserede den hurtigt som en forbilledlig kulttekst og et inspirerende hovedværk: Den navnløse helts usikre observationer og plagede drømme, hans nervesitrende visioner og mentale hudafskrabninger – alt denne korte, men intense sulteperiode i Kristiania fremkalder – foregriber det tyvende århundredes litterære eksperimenter.
Thomas Mann og Franz Kafka, Ernest Hemingway og Henry Miller, Jack Kerouac og Paul Auster skriver alle videre i romanens ånd og stil. I Det surrealistiske Manifest fra 1924 nævner André Breton endda Sult som en vigtig inspirationskilde for den skelsættende surrealistiske bevægelse. Sult er et mirakel. En kunstnerisk udfordring uden ende.