1968 Per Olof Sundman, Sweden: Ingenjör Andrées luftfärd

1968 Per Olof Sundman, Sverige: Ingenjör Andrées luftfärd
Ulla Montan

About the author

Per Olof Sundman was born and grew up in Vaxholm, later to become hotel keeper in Jormlien, a mountain town in Jämtland. In 1963, he returned to Vaxholm where he became politically active in the Centre Party, which he represented in the Swedish parliament 1969–1979. He made his debut as a writer in 1957. His greatest period was in the 1960s, when he published several highly recognised documentary novels, written in an objective, recording style, which leaves moral judgment to readers.

About the winning piece

Ingenjör Andrées Luftfärd describes Salomon August Andrée’s and his friends Nils Strindberg’s and Knut Frænkel’s poorly prepared expedition to the North Pole in a hydrogen balloon in 1897, a quest with a disastrous end. In 1930, their remains were found on Vitön along with the remnants of their equipment, including diaries and filmed material which could be exposed. Per Olof Sundman studied the remaining material in detail, before he started writing. Knut Frænkel is the narrator of the novel. Salomon August Andrée is described as a cynical dreamer so swept up in society’s desire for sensations and his own obsessions that he fails to realise the hopelessness of the project.

Ingenjör Andrées luftfärd

Published by: Norstedts 

Publication year: 1967

This is what the Adjudicating Committee had to say

The novel, "Ingenjör Andrées Luftfärd", combines strong internal and external tension with a singularly objective poetry.