Eyvind Johnson


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Johnson, Eyvind

 

Born July 29, 1900, near Boden. Swedish writer. Member of the Swedish Academy (1957); co-recipient of the Nobel Prize with H. Martinson (1974).

Johnson’s first collection of short stories, Four Strangers (1924), was followed by the novel Timans and Justice (1925), in which he denounces Christianity as hostile to the emancipation of the working class. The influence of psychoanalysis may be seen in his novel Remembered (1928). A factory owner is depicted with caustic irony in the novel Commentary on a Falling Star (1929), and the cycle of novels about Olof (1934–37) portrays the lives of working-class youth. Johnson’s novel Night Maneuvers (1938) and the trilogy Krilon: A Novel About the Possible (1941–43) attack fascism. His novellas Pan Against Sparta (1946) and Surf (1946) and his historical novels Dreams About Roses and Fire (1949) and Storm Clouds Over Metapontion (1957) show the influence of symbolism. Another notable historical work is The Age of His Greatness (1960), a novel about the reign of Charlemagne.

WORKS

Spar förbi kolonos. [Stockholm, 1961.]
In Russian translation:
[“Rasskazy.”] In the collection Shvedskaia novella XIX-XX vv. Moscow, 1964.

REFERENCE

Svensk litteratur 1900–1950 Stockholm [1958].
Andersson, U. “Eyvind Johnson i Grekland.” Ny Dag, Jan. 2, 1962.

A. V. MAMONTOV

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Have you ever heard of Eyvind Johnson and Harry Martinson?
Not only were there two women nominees (Doris Lessing and Anna Seghers of East Germany) but also Wole Soyinka from Nigeria, Eyvind Johnson from Sweden, Zaharia Stancu from Romania, and Georges Schehade of Lebanon.
He joins Selma Lagerlf (1909), Verner von Heidenstam (1916), Erik Axel Karlfeldt (1931), Pr Lagerkvist (1951), Eyvind Johnson and Harry Martinsson (1974, shared prize).
Transtromer is the first Swede to receive the literature prize since Eyvind Johnson and Harry Martinson shared it in 1974.
Eyvind Johnson (SWEDEN, 1900-1976) "for a narrative art, far-seeing in lands and ages, in the service of freedom." The four-volume epic The Story of Olof (1934-1937), which blends realism and fairy tale, recounts Johnson's experiences as a logger.
Eyvind Johnson, Swedish novelist, short story writer, and a member of the Nobel Committee at the time of Hemingway's death, was quoted in Le Figaro as saying Hemingway was one of the most important prose writers of our time, always seeking the truth, as he had always sought adventure in all its forms (politics, war, sport) in order to live it and depict it.
With Eyvind Johnson he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1974.
Solzhenitsyn (Russ); 1971, Pablo Neruda (Chile); 1972, Heinrich Boll (Ger); 1973, Patrick White (Austral); 1974, Harry Martinson (Sw) and Eyvind Johnson (Sw); 1975, Eugenio Montale (Ital); 1976, Saul Bellow (U.S.); 1977, Vicente Aleixandre (Sp); 1978, Isaac Bashevis Singer (U.S.); 1979, Odysseus Elytis (Gr); 1980, Czeslaw Milosz (Pol); 1981, Elias Canetti (Bulg); 1982, Gabriel Garcia Marquez (Colom); 1983, William Golding (Eng); 1984, Jaroslav Seifert (Czech); 1985, Claude Simon (Fr); 1986, Wole Soyinka (Nigeria); 1987, Joseph Brodsky (U.S.); 1988, Naguib Mahfouz (Egypt).
In "Make Me Alive Again" Ekman defends the sovereignty of free speech, using Eyvind Johnson's World War II Krilon-Trilogie (1941-43) as a framework.
In 1974 Martinson shared the Nobel Prize in Literature with Eyvind Johnson.