2012
Merethe Lindstrøm
1962
2012

2012 Merethe Lindstrøm, Norway: Dager i stillhetens historie

About the author

Merethe Lindstrøm (1963 - ) - Norway

Merethe Lindstrøm was born in Bergen in 1963. She made her debut with the short story collection “Sexorcisten og andre fortellinger” in 1983, and has since written several other collections of short stories, novels and a children's book. A characteristic of Merethe Lindstrøm's writing is her focus on modern people's quest for others and for meaning. She has received most recognition for her collection of short stories “Svømme under vann” (1994) and novels “Steinsamlere” (1996) and “Stedfortrederen” (1997). She was nominated for the Nordic Council Literature Prize in 2008 for her collection of short stories “Gjestene” (2007) and nominated for the Norwegian Critics Prize for best adult book in 2007. Merethe Lindstrøm was awarded the Dobloug Prize in 2008 for her entire literary work.

About the winning piece

Dager i stillhetens historie

Published by: Aschehoug publishing company
Publication year: 2011

An elderly couple have silently agreed to not discuss their past. While he shuts himself away more and more, she tries to break out of the isolation and silence. Who was the housekeeper that they were both very close to for a while before abruptly dismissing her? Merethe Lindstrøm's writing projects a strong, tense family drama about silence and secrecy. It is about the love between two people who have made important choices that define their entire existence, just to realize that some things cannot be ignored. The past not only resurfaces, it has been there all along.

This is what the Adjudicating Committee had to say

In a gentle, precise and thoughtful prose Lindstrøm relates how a dramatic past slowly breaks into an elderly woman's life and consciousness.

Excerpt

Jeg ser meg rundt i huset, alt har sin plass her også, del av en orden. Det er så ryddig, som et museum eller en kirke, gjenstandene virker utstilt. Det er få av dem jeg fremdeles har bruk for, som har noen praktisk verdi. De tilhører sosiale ritualer som ikke lenger utføres i særlig grad, eller hvis de utføres, sjelden har noen betydning. De er redusert til en påfallende rekke av minner. Den gamle klokka over bordet, teserviset i skapet bak lukkede glassdører. Det er til og med mulig huset eksisterer for å huse disse tingene, i større grad enn det eksisterer for oss.

Det var på grunn av huset og alt det inneholder, tingene, at vi for en fire–fem års tid siden ansatte en vaskehjelp.

See all nominated in 2012  

Denmark

Vibeke Grønfeldt
Livliner
Novel, Samleren, 2011

Janina Katz
Skrevet på polsk
Poetry, Rosinante, 2011

Finland

Gösta Ågren
I det stora hela
Poetry collection, Söderströms, 2011

Saila Susiluoto
Carmen
Poetry, Otava, 2010

Iceland

Bergsveinn Birgisson
Svar við bréfi Helgu (Svar på brev frå Helga)
Novel, Bjartur, 2010 (Norwegian translation Johannes Gjerdåker)

Gerður Kristný
Blóðhófnir (Blodhov)
Poetry, Mál og menning, 2010 (Swedish translation John Swedenmark)

Norway

Øyvind Rimbereid
Jimmen
A poem, Gyldendal, 2011

Merethe Lindstrøm
Dager i stillhetens historie
Novel, Aschehoug forlag, 2011

Sweden

Katarina Frostenson
Flodtid
Poetry collection, Wahlström & Widstrand, 2011

Eva-Marie Liffner
Lacrimosa
Novel, Natur & Kultur, 2011

Faroe Islands

Hanus Kamban
Gullgentan (Guldpigen)    
Short stories, Mentunargrunnur Studentafelagsins, 2010
(Danish translation, Kirsten Brix)

Greenland

Tungutaq Larsen
Nittaallatut
Poetry collection, Forlaget Atuagkat, 2011

The Sami Language Area

Rawdna Carita Eira
ruohta muzetbeallji ruohta (løp svartøre løp)
Poetry, Gyldendal, 2011

The Åland Islands

Leo Löthman
Transportflotte Speer
Novel, PQR-kultur, 2011