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Iceland Review

Culture

The Summerhouse

In all Swedish real estate listings, there’s a special note about the property’s dis­tance to water. As if people can only endure a brief amount of time on land before re-immersing themselves. I can picture them, sun-browned and sockless in their shoes, pink sweater arms dangling off the shoulders of slick-haired Swedes, striped skirts whipping […]

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What it's like to drown
Fiction

What It’s Like To Drown

Friðgeir Einarsson has published three books; one novel and two short story collections. He has also attracted attention within the Icelandic performing arts scene as an actor, director, and author with performance groups including 16 Lovers and Kriðpleir. His play Club Romantica was premiered at the Reykjavík City Theatre earlier this year and has received praise from both viewers and critics. What It’s Like to Drown first appeared in his book Ég hef séð svona áður (I’ve Seen This Before) in 2018.

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Fiction

Korriró, Baby

It explained a lot when Snæfríður figured out that there were trolls in her apartment. The discomfort she’d felt over the last few months was vague, but real. Respiratory infections. Chronic fatigue. Panic attacks.            She went online immediately and looked up an exterminator.            The exterminator was more attractive than she’d expected. He had a silver […]

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In Focus

In Focus: Iceland’s Cabinet

Iceland is currently governed by Katrín Jakobsdóttir’s cabinet, made up of six men and five women from three different parties – the Left-Green Movement, the Independence Party, and the Progressive Party. All of the cabinet members also serve as members of parliament except Minister for the Environment and Natural Resources Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson.

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Stöð Stövarfjörður Viking Age longhouse excavation
Culture

Buried

Once upon a time, there was a brave Viking chief called Ingólfur Arnarson. He took to the open ocean along with his family and farmhands to seek out a land far across the sea that only a handful of explorers had visited. When Ingólfur saw this new, uninhabited land rise from the sea, knowing nothing of its opportunities or the challenges it presented, he asked the gods for direction on where to settle. Ingólfur threw his high-seat pillars overboard, swearing an oath to build his farm wherever they came ashore. The gods directed the pillars to Reykjavík, where Ingólfur made his home in the year 874.

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Áramótaskaup 2019
Culture

Laugh Out the Old:
Iceland’s New Year’s Eve Comedy Tradition

Icelandic New Year’s Eve parties are notorious for their ill-advised combination of copious quantities of alcohol and ample access to explosives. Yet amidst the pollution and chaos of the night, every party has a distinct, hour-long lull. The reason is the TV comedy special Áramótaskaupið, which has satirised the top news stories of the year with skits and songs since its debut on radio in the 1940s.

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Wool dyeing Iceland
Culture

The Colourful Oddyssey of Icelandic Wool Dyeing

Following the winding outskirts of Reykjavík, a gravel road jostles you toward a wooden hut. The strong scent of herbs emanates from the doorway. Before you can enter into the warm space, Tryggur, a charmingly fluffy Labrador-collie mix, sidles up to you in shy greeting. He leads you in and sits down patiently amongst a colourful collection of yarns, waiting for a pat while his owner talks over the sound of gently bubbling pots.

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