Published in 1991, ‘The Swan’ (orig. Icelandic Svanurinn) is a novel written by the Icelandic writer Guðbergur Bergsson that won the ‘Icelandic Literary Prize‘ in 1991. The story is about a nine-year-old girl sent to a country farm in Iceland to serve her probation for shoplifting (a characteristic Icelandic sentence). In the novel, the girl finds a kind of freedom by submitting to the inevitable restraints and suffering of remote rural life. In 1992, ‘Svanurinn’ was also nominated for the ‘Nordic Council Literary Prize‘. This is one of the few novels by Guðbergur Bergsson that are available in English, translated by Bernard Scudder, a member of the team that translated the Icelandic Sagas. In 2017, the Icelandic film director Ása Helga Hjörleifsdóttir shot her first movie ‘The Swan’, the adaptation of Svanurinn.
Books, Culture, Iceland, Literature