Laxness' Daughter Destroyed Father’s Nobel Speech Skip to content

Laxness’ Daughter Destroyed Father’s Nobel Speech

Sigríður Halldórsdóttir, daughter of Nobel Prize winner Halldór Laxness, revealed in an interview with Morgunblaðið that one of her first childhood memories was hearing her father speak in Swedish on the radio. This was his Nobel Prize speech in 1955 when Sigriður was four years old.

halldorlaxness_small_psHalldór Laxness. Photo: Páll Stefánsson/Iceland Review.

A few years later Sigriður was playing together with her sister Guðný. They were staging their own play and needed a tape recorder. They used their father’s recorder, but the only tape available was that with their father’s Nobel speech. This seemed much less important than their original play at the time, so they erased that, replacing it with their literary work.

Luckily, their father never found out, since a little later the recorder broke down and was discarded.

Sigríður is the mother of author Auður Jónsdóttir, who wrote about a mother who liked her drink, in her 2012 autobiographic novel Ósjálfrátt (Uncontrolled or Unintended).


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