Biography[ edit ] Bang was born in Asserballe , on the small Danish island of Als , the son of a South Jutlandic vicar a relative of N. His family history was marked by insanity and disease. When he was twenty he published two volumes of critical essays on the realistic movement. The book was considered obscene at the time and was banned. He lived most of his life with his sister, but spent a few years living in Prague in —86, with the German actor Max Eisfeld —
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Start your review of Ved Vejen Write a review Shelves: classics , danish A friend of mine who is very well-read in Danish literature which I very much am not keeps telling me to read more books by Danish authors. I blame my four-year stint in the States as a teenager and, later, my decision to major in English at university. And lets face it, even staying abreast of the development of English literature is fairly impossible not to mention American, Scottish, Canadian, French which I minored in etc.
My brief experience of Danish high school included a bohemian Danish teacher, who fed us with either social realist literature of the worst kind the belief at the time was apparently that kids had to read about divorce etc. I was never captured. So I began reading this novel without expecting too much. I knew of it but had never had much occasion, or felt inclined, to read it. It was a bit bleak, to be honest, but no more so than your average Edith Wharton novel. I guess it was the old-fashioned-ness of it that struck me, especially linguistically.
The story is a quiet one, set in a provincial Danish town at the end of the 19th century, and centered around Katinka, who has married one man but loves another cf. There were some wonderful descriptions, there were some dull moments, and there was a heart-breaking death scene. I feel just a tiny bit triumphant at having delved into a Danish literary classic.
It will not be the last. Interestingly, but irrelevantly, Herman Bang almost paralleled Oscar Wilde at around the end of the 19th century. Like Wilde, Bang was a renowned author but was gradually ridiculed and ostracized by society, notably by the press, for being a homosexual dandy and had to flee to other European cities.
It makes me want to stretch my readerly goodwill toward him even more.
He noticed a young woman at the window who, her pale face couched in her hands, stared after his departing train. Her look was not quite one of longing — longing would have perhaps fluttered to death by breaking its wings in such tight confines — just a quite resignation, a waning sorrow. And when the train had slid by, she would be peering out with the same look over Egnens Lyng — over the dreary plain. The marriage is barren, and she remains isolated. Almost subconsciously, she passionately longs after something undefinable.