Other literary forms

(Survey of Novels and Novellas)
ph_0111200552-Hamsun.jpg Knut Hamsun. Published by Salem Press, Inc.

Although he always considered the novel his strongest genre, Knut Hamsun (HAHM-suhn) also wrote plays, poetry, and expository prose. Fra det moderne Amerikas aandsliv (1889; The Cultural Life of Modern America, 1969) is an impudent but witty survey of social and cultural conditions in the United States; Hamsun later repudiated it and would not allow it to be reprinted. Some of the poems in Det vilde kor (1904; the wild chorus) are among the best written in Norway during the period. Hamsun was a rather weak dramatist, although his trilogy comprising Vid rigets port (pb. 1895; at the gate of the kingdom), Livets spil (pb. 1896; the game of life), and Aftenrøde (pb. 1898; the red of evening) is interesting as a drama of ideas. His memoir På gjengrodde stier (1949; On Overgrown Paths, 1967), written when he was nearly ninety years old, is one of his finest books.