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How to feel at home in Norway

by Silje 0 Comments

This gem from 1949 was just added to our library by a dear friend. Quoting from the fourth last page (p 122): “Above the Arctic Circle is where Norway really begins, the northern natives say. And if Norway is defined as rock-masses in the most stupendous sizes and awe-inspiring shapes whose ever-changing colors are reflected or complemented by sea and sky, they are right. Bodø, the Lofoten Islands, Narvik, Tromsø; each stage of this Arctic journey should have a chapter for itself, although our guess is that even the most flue ntword [sic] descriptions would be inadequate. In any case, we must admit not having been north of Trondheim and can only recommend that you study photographs from these parts for yourself or listen to the tales of more fortunate travelers.”

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Brave new world

A nice Shakespeare quote appeared on our wall today. The title of Aldous Huxley’s famous 1932 novel Brave New World is taken from here. Citing from Wikipedia:

Brave New World’s title derives from Miranda‘s speech in William Shakespeare‘s The Tempest, Act V, Scene I:[4]

O wonder!
How many goodly creatures are there here!
How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
That has such people in’t.
William ShakespeareThe Tempest, Act V, Scene I, ll. 203–206[5]

This line itself is ironic; Miranda was raised for most of her life on an isolated island, and the only people she ever knew were her father and his servants, an enslaved savage, and spirits, notably Ariel. When she sees other people for the first time, she is understandably overcome with excitement, and utters, among other praise, the famous line above. However, what she is actually observing is not men acting in a refined or civilized manner, but rather drunken sailors staggering off the wreckage of their ship. Huxley employs the same irony when the “savage” John refers to what he sees as a “brave new world”.

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