Icelander Receives Nordic Council Literature Prize Skip to content

Icelander Receives Nordic Council Literature Prize

milli-trjanna_ge-coverIcelandic author Gyrdir Elíasson received the 2011 Nordic Council Literature Prize for the short story collection Milli trjánna (“Between the Trees”; 2009), as announced at a press conference in Oslo yesterday.

He will accept the award and a prize worth ISK 7.5 million (USD 66,000, EUR 46,000) at the Nordic Council Session in Copenhagen in November.

“I thought the short story form was talked down globally and had had no expectations about winning the award,” Elíasson told Morgunbladid.

The jury concluded that Milli trjánna is a clear-cut and outstanding work of fiction which describes inner and outer struggles and is in a discourse with world literature.

The book contains 47 different short stories that become intertwined. Elíasson lived in Hveragerdi, south Iceland, when he wrote the book.

“Many of them happen in a place that could be Hveragerdi, while others happen in Reykjavík or other undefined places,” the author said of his short stories.

Elíasson is the seventh Icelander to receive the Nordic Council Literature Prize. He has been nominated for the prize on two other occasions, for Bréfbátarigningin (“The Letter Boat Rain”) in 1991 and Gula húsid (“The Yellow House”) in 2002.

Click here to read more about Icelandic literature.

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