Hagar Olsson

Olsson, Hagar


Born Sept. 16, 1893, in Kustavi. Finnish writer and literary critic writing in Swedish.

Olsson began writing in 1916. In 1922 she helped found the literary journal Ultra, published in Finnish and Swedish. Together with the poet E. Diktonius, she established Finno-Swedish modernism.

The hero of Olsson’s first expressionist novel, Mr. Jeremias Seeks an Illusion (1926), finds escape in death after vain efforts to become reconciled with reality. Olsson’s dramas deal with topical social problems, while such plays as The Robber and the Girl (1944) have mystical elements as well. The novel in the form of a legend The Engraver and Death (1940) and the fantastic short story “The Chinese Outing” (1949) are her best works.

Olsson’s later work was lyric in tone and dealt with problems common to mankind, as seen in the drama The Death of Love (1952).


Ny generation. Helsinki, 1925.
Chitambo. Helsinki, 1933.
Hemkomsl. Helsinki, 1961.
Drommar. Helsinki-Stockholm, 1966.
Ridturen: Noveller. Helsinki, 1968.


Maailman kirjat ja kirjailijat. Compiled by T. Anhava. Helsinki, 1957.
Laitinen, K. Suomen kirjallisuus, 1917–1967. Helsinki, 1970.