Nordic Literature Forum: Nordic Noir - April 9, 2015
DECC was present at Nordic Literature Forum 2015: Nordic Noir on April 9, 2015. We were especially interested in the live discussion between Kerstin Bergman, Crime fiction expert, secretary of the Swedish Crime Writers Academy, and Bo Tao Michaëlis, author, literary critic and member of the Danish Crime Academy. Unfortunately the discussion was not recorded, though we can bring out a few points that were interesting for us to learn:
- What are the common virtues of Nordic crime fiction? It is the police scenery, especially in Sweden; whilst Norwegian authors tend to focus more on detectives, Danes more on international thrillers, Icelandic writers create a small society scene. Finns also write the police-related stories, but differ in two aspects - the Finnish police is never corrupt and the bad guy tends to be Russian.
- Do the female writers differ from male writers in crime fiction? Approximately 30-40% of crime fiction writers are women in Scandinavia who bring more women prototypes to the scene. The novels include women who have to combine their career and family life and crimes are often against women. Also very often the female figure is introvert with low social capabilities, but very knowledgeable, they have casual sex and act as lonely wolves. Very few female authors are feminist. In fact, the biggest feminist is Stig Larsson.
- Are there any trends to be seen? The scene plots are becoming more international. Often the story-line takes place in Europe, Asia involving organized, international crime. Norwegians and Danes have the trend to write or involve the German occupation period, then Danes are also being paranoid, schizophrenic, and see conspiration toward soldiers returning from Afganistan and taking over the country for instance.
- How long will the Nordic fame trend last? Here the answers varied between the Danish and Swedish literature experts: Bo Tao Michaëlis sees the beginning of the end approaching, whilst Kerstin Bergman believes that there’s no finish to be seen yet.
The discussion was led by Christer Haglund, the director of the Nordic Council of Minister’s Office in Estonia.
We are indeed very satisfied with the Nordic literature forum taking place and bringing such amazing speakers to meet up here in Tallinn. Thanks for all the organizers for the third Nordic-Baltic Literature Forum Estonian Publishers Association, the Estonian Association of Librarians and Tallinn Book Fair, the Nordic embassies in Estonia, the Finnish Institute are close working partners of the Nordic Council of Ministers' Office in Estonia.
Looking forward to the next forum already,
Manager of the DECC
Photos from daily newspaper Postimees
Our photos by Merli Lindberg