One of Life's Slaves

One of Life's Slaves

by Jonas Lauritz Idemil Lie, Jessie Muir


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In a review which appeared in the Athenæum, of a translation of one of Jonas Lie's earlier works-"Den Fremsynte" ("The Visionary")-the reviewer expressed a hope that I would follow up that translation with "an English version of Lie's 'Livsslaven,' that intensely tragic and pathetic story of suffering and wrong." It is in accordance with this suggestion that the present volume makes its appearance.
In taking Christiania life for the subject of "Livsslaven," Jonas Lie attempted for the second time to break down the preconceived opinion of critics, that such a subject did not come within his province. They were accustomed to have tales of sea-life from his pen, and could not readily be persuaded that another sphere of life might afford equal scope for his talent. "Thomas Ross," published in 1878, had treated of Christiania life, and had attracted but little attention; and now, in the spring of 1883, appeared this "story of a smith's apprentice, with his struggles for existence and his ultimate final failure owing to the irresistible indulgence of a passionate physical instinct." At first this too seemed to be a failure. To use the words of Arne Garborg, a Norwegian author and critic, Lie "had spoken-cried out in the passion or agony of his soul, and people stood there quite calm and as if they had heard nothing;" there seemed to be a total lack of sympathetic comprehension on the part of the public. In the end, however, the book found its way to the hearts of its readers, and, to quote Mr. Gosse's words on the subject, "achieved a very great success; it was realistic and modern in a certain sense and to a discreet degree, and it appealed, as scarcely any Norwegian novel had done before, to all classes of Scandinavian society."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9783744713269
Publisher: Bod Third Party Titles
Publication date: 04/13/2019
Pages: 188
Product dimensions: 5.83(w) x 8.27(h) x 0.43(d)

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