TUE—5-9-2017—7 PM, free
Poet and Author Helen Mitsios leads this panel discussion about Out of the Blue, a groundbreaking collection of fiction from Iceland’s best contemporary authors. Out of the Blue is the first anthology of Icelandic short fiction published in English translation and features work by twenty of Iceland’s most popular and celebrated living authors.
The collection transports readers to Iceland’s timeless and magical island of Vikings and geographical wonders, promising to be a seminal collection that will define Icelandic literature in translation for decades to come.
About Helen Mitsios
Helen Mitsios is an award-winning poet and author. She is the editor of four groundbreaking anthologies, author of the poetry collection If Black Had a Shadow, and co-writer of the memoir Waltzing with the Enemy: A Mother and Daughter Confront the Aftermath of the Holocaust.
Her writing has appeared in numerous publications including The Washington Post Book World, San Francisco Chronicle, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Brooklyn Rail and The Forward. She is a Professor of Languages and Literature at Touro College & University System in New York City.
About the Authors
Rúnar Vignisson is an Icelandic author and translator who has won many honors for his writing, among them The Icelandic Translation Award for J. M. Coetzee’s Boyhood and the DV Cultural Prize for his newest book, Love and Other Complications. Rúnar is currently director of the Creative Writing Program at the University of Iceland.
Auður Jónsdóttir has published seven novels, two children books, one screenplay based on one of her novels, and countless essays for Icelandic as well as international publications since 1998. She won the Icelandic Literary Prize for The People in the Basement and the Icelandic Women’s Literature Prize for Secretaries to the Spirits. Both of these novels were nominated for the Nordic Council Literary Prize.
Gerður Kristný’s work encompasses a wide range of literary genres and forms. It is, however, poetry that has earned her the reputation as one of the leading voices of the vibrant Icelandic literature scene. Author of six poetry volumes, she received the Icelandic Literature Awards 2010 for her cycle of poems, Blóðhófnir and was nominated for the prestigious Nordic Council Literature Prize.
Ólafur Gunnarsson published his first collection of poetry in 1970. In the following years he published an acclaimed trilogy, consisting of the novels; The Trolls Cathedral, Potters Field, and The Winter Journey. Ólafur would go on to write more novels, among them; The Ax and the Earth, for which he received the Icelandic literary price. Ólafur has also written a series of children’s books, for which The Beautiful Flying Whale was nominated for the Nordic Children‘s Literature Award.
Guðmundur Andri Thorsson is a highly regarded face on the literary scene in Iceland, known for both his books and his weekly column in Iceland’s widest-circulation newspaper Fréttablaðið. He holds a degree in Icelandic and comparative literature from the University of Iceland and has worked for many years as an editor with Iceland’s two leading publishers, Mál og Menning and Forlagið. Guðmundur Andri’s first novel, Mín káta angist (My Joyful Angst), was published in 1988 and has been followed by nine more books, novels, poetry, and books of essays and short stories. Several of his novels have been nominated for the Icelandic Literary Prize, including his latest, Sæmd (Dignity, 2013). In 1991 he was awarded the DV Cultural Prize for Literature for the novel Íslenski draumurinn (The Icelandic Dream). In 2013 his cycle of short stories, Valeyrarvalsinn (The Valeyri Waltz), was nominated for the Nordic Council Literature Prize and has since been published in Germany, France, Denmark, Poland, and Norway.