Munk, Kaj

Munk, Kaj

(kī mo͝ongk), 1898–1944, Danish playwright, a clergyman. His ethical plays, traditional in form, led the Danish dramatic revival in the 1930s. Among them is The Word (1932), which deals with resurrection and faith. Munk, who attacked National SocialismNational Socialism
or Nazism,
doctrines and policies of the National Socialist German Workers' party, which ruled Germany under Adolf Hitler from 1933 to 1945.
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 in He Sits by the Melting Pot (1938) and Niels Ebbesen (1942, tr. 1944), was killed by the Nazis during the German occupation in World War II. A translation of his works appeared as Five Plays (1953).

Munk, Kaj

 

Born Jan. 13, 1898, in Maribo; died Jan. 4, 1944, in H0rbylunde, near Silkeborg. Danish playwright, poet, and journalist.

After graduating from the department of theology of the University of Copenhagen in 1924, Munk became a parish priest in Western Jutland. He began to write in the 1920’s. His first important work, the play Herod the King (1928), dealt with the subject of good and evil against the background of a biblical theme. In his drama The Word (1925), he asserted the power of religious faith. Munk’s fascination with the idea of a “strong” personality was reflected in his works of the 1930’s and in his support of political dictatorship. The dramas Hamlet (1934), Victory (1936), and The Female Dictator (1938) served as vehicles for his political views. However, in his play He Sits at the Melting Pot (1938), Munk condemned the fascist theories of race.

During the occupation of Denmark, Munk spoke out as an antifascist and patriot. Works of this period include the poetry collections Swear, Young Men! (1941) and The Youthful North (1942), the collections of articles By the Rivers of Babylon (1941) and By the Word’s Sword (1942), and the national historical drama Niels Ebbesen (1942). Munk’s poetry and sermons, which called for resistance, were printed by the underground press. He was killed by the Nazis.

WORKS

Mindeudgave [vols. 1–9]. Copenhagen, 1948–49.

REFERENCES

Kristensen, S. M. Datskaia literatura 1918–52. Moscow, 1963.
Larsen, J. K. Kaj Munk som dramatiker. Copenhagen, 1941.
Brix, H. Hastigt svandt den lyse sommer. Copenhagen, 1946.
Marcussen, O. Kaj Munks bɸger: En bibliografi. Copenhagen, 1945.

I. P. KUPRIIANOVA

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