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Att besvärja döden: Död- och återfödelsetematiken i Lars Noréns författarskap 1963-1999
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Literature and History of Ideas.
2011 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
Beseeching death : The theme of death and rebirth in Lars Norén’s works 1963-1999 (English)
Abstract [en]

Lars Norén’s poetical world is filled with the living and the dead, history and memory. This study is the first one of its kind that treats myths and religious ideas in Norén’s works. Its aim is to examine the centre of his oeuvre, namely a striving in the texts to heal disintegration and to beseech death in order to maintain a life process. The analysis is thematic and focuses on Norén’s texts from 1963-1999. The study shows that mythical patterns recur in the world of Norén’s texts. At first sight, it appears that humans face an inevitable death, but this study shows how linear time, called here chronos, measured by clocks and calendars, becomes a timeless dimension, called kairos.

The main focus of the dissertation is on how the mythical dimension often acquires a healing effect. Through mythical elements and other religious ideas, a specific poetic worldview becomes clear. Characteristic of this worldview, and that which unifies it, is the theme of death and resurrection, as well as the theme of rebirth.

The dissertation discusses themes such as “the mythical journey” and “the subterranean landscape of myth”, also noting those of “lilac”, “the cornfield”, “the underworld” and “the bird”. Norén responds to an extensive literary tradition when he uses vegetation and seasons of the year to illustrate life and death. The image of a tree comprises an important part of the life cycle, while leaves on a tree symbolize human death. The masks which appear in Norén’s texts are viewed here as tools for metamorphosis. In particular, the medial border magic of the mask is analysed and presented from various perspectives.

A non-denominational religiosity is apparent in the texts. Ultimately it appears that great darkness coincides with mysticism’s holistic view. The author’s literary imagination expresses healing processes and mythical actors with the ability to prevent complete disintegration and final death.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Möklinta: Gidlunds förlag , 2011. , 412 p.
Keyword [en]
Lars Norén, modern Swedish literature, thematic method, myth interpretation, chronos, kairos, death and resurrection
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-57415ISBN: 978-91-7844-823-4OAI: diva2:415754
Public defence
2011-06-01, Auditorium 215, Humanistvillan, Frescativägen 24, Stockholm, 13:00 (Swedish)
Available from: 2011-05-10 Created: 2011-05-09 Last updated: 2011-05-09Bibliographically approved

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