Summing up

I haven’t been writing because I’ve been in the states taking care of my mother, who suffered a rather traumatic medical emergency a week before Christmas. She’s on the mend now, and I just got back to Norway yesterday.

My four-year postdoctoral fellowship ends today. It’s been a good run. I connected and strengthened relationships with colleagues both here and at other institutions, I learned many of the ins and outs of Norwegian academia, and I got a lot of research and writing done. I think I applied for something like five jobs, though none of them have come through (yet–still waiting to hear back on the one I applied for in August, and I just sent a new one out today). All in all, I’m really happy with my efforts, though of course there’s still always so much more one could have done.

So, here’s a list of what I wrote from the time I arrived in January 2009 up through this month:

Articles (the first six have yet to be published, but are either being evaluated, or in press):

  1. “Ibsen’s The Lady from the Sea and the Spectacle of Romantic Theater.”
  2. “Post-Secular Salvation: Hallvard Bræin’s Gatas Gynt.
  3. “Transnational Christmas in Mona J. Hoel’s Når nettene blir lange.”
  4. “Bjørnsons ‘Sæterromantik.’”
  5. “Body, Corpus, and Corpse: Delineating Ibsen in A.S. Byatt’s The Biographer’s Tale.”
  6. “The Real Norway: Cabins in Norwegian National Identity Construction.”
  7. “Nikolaj Frobenius’ Teori og praksis in Theory and Practice.” Scandinavian Studies 84.1 (2012): 59-86
  8. “By the Open Sea: Ibsen’s Fruen fra Havet and Jon Fosse’s Nokon kjem til å komme.” Ibsen Studies 10.2 (2011): 192-222
  9. “Domesticated Wilderness in Two Norwegian Children’s Classics.” Scandinavian Studies 83.1 (2011): 45-62
  10. “Hamsun’s Problematic ‘I’: The Wanderer Trilogy as Performative Biographism.” Knut Hamsun: Transgression and Worlding. Ed. Ståle Dingstad, et al. Trondheim: Tapir forlag, 2011. 65-83.
  11. “‘Det egentlige Norge’: Hytter i norsk litteratur, ca 1814-2005.” Norske hytter i endring. Om bærekraft og behag. Ed. Helen Jøsok Gansmo, Thomas Berker og Finn Arne Jørgensen. Trondheim: Tapir forlag, 2011. 23-36.
  12. “Bjerregaard (and Thrane’s, Wergeland’s, Aasen’s, Ibsen’s, Bjørnson’s and Garborg’s) Fjeldeventyret (1825, 1844, 1853,1857, 1865, and 1925).” IASS 2010 Proceedings: Föredrag vid den 28:e studiekonferensen i International Association of Scandinavian Studies (IASS) i Lund 3-7 augusti 2010. Ed. Claes-Göran Holmberg og Per Erik Ljung. Lund: Lund University Open Access, 2011.
  13.  “Anne Holt’s Transnational Lesbian Detective Fiction.” Criminal Scandinavia: Nordic Crime Fiction Since the 1990s. Ed. Paula Arvas og Andrew Nestingen. Cardiff: Welsh Academic Press, 2011. 100-114.
  14. “Trolls, Monster Masts and National Neurosis: André Øvrelid’s The Troll Hunter.” Scandinavica 50.2 (2011): 52-62
  15. “Cora Sandels fiksjon/Cora Sandel som fiksjon.” Bøygen 4 (2011): 8-16
  16. “Norwave: Norwegian Cinema 1997-2006.” Scandinavian-Canadian Studies 19 (2010): 88-110
  17. “The Seter as Locus Amoenus in Edvard Storm’s Døleviser.” Scandinavica 49.1 (2010): 5-22
  18. “Problems of Landscape and Representation in Ibsen’s Når vi døde vågner.” Ibsen Studies 9.2 (2010): 37-61
  19. “Intermedial Strategies in Erlend Loe’s Volvo lastvagnar.Edda 1 (2010): 51-63
  20. “Den reflekterende overflaten: Erlend Loes Doppler og Volvo lastvagnar.” Norsk litterær årbok (2009): 258-281

Book manuscripts:

  1. “Cabin Fever: Place and Identity in Norwegian Literature, 1814-2005.” (72,000 words)
  2. “Ibsen’s Peer Gynt and the Production of Meaning.” (55,000 words)

I’m really pleased that I was able to pull together two book manuscripts, rather than just one. I had originally thought I’d put together a book on Gunnar Larsen, but I’m much happier with the Peer Gynt, project, since it combines so many of my interests. A Larsen project would have been backward looking in a sense, since it relates more to the work on Nordic modernism that I was doing during the first decade of my career, rather than to the work on adaptation, cultural studies, and space/place that I am interested in doing now.

I also gave ten conference papers and seven invited lectures, did five book reviews and a bunch of evaluations of manuscripts for journals and publishers, as well as evaluations of M.A. theses and applications for Ph.D. fellowships, which is all peripheral to research publications, but related. And of course I taught a course each semester and had some minimal administrative work too.

While I’m pretty stressed out about being unemployed, I really can’t say that I regret quitting my tenured position in the U.S. to take this fellowship. It has been an incredibly creative and enlightening period for me, and it is hands down the best job I have ever had. I’m really sad to see it end, but I do think it puts me in a strong position to get something permanent, and I’ll be much better prepared for the realities of such a position in Norway than I would have been had I been able to land something right away when we decided to move. Now I’ll be able to hit the ground running, if I’m lucky enough to get a position.

So, all in all, I think “going rogue” like this was one of the best things I could have done intellectually speaking, though if things go bad it may still end up having been my last hurrah as an employed academic.

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