tisdag, juli 03, 2012

Vilhelm Moberg

Vilhelm Moberg (1898-1973)

Vilhelm Moberg was born in August 20, 1898 in Småland, in the south of Sweden. He was the the fourth child in a family of seven kids.
He led a harsh and simple childhood, and early on found an interest in the literary world.
Not only was he one of Swedens most succesful writers, his plays were very successful all throughout Sweden. Even up to this day one can look at the musical Kristina from Duvemåla (set up by Björn and Benny of ABBA) to see his longlasting influence on the Swedish cultural life.

Moberg has been voted as the most important Swedish journalist during the 20th century. He was from the start very vocal in his opposition against the lack of Swedish resistance towards nazi-Germany and became one of the most active and famous anti-totalitarians in Sweden. Moberg was also harshly critical of the Soviet Union's war against Finland as well as the politics of Soviet.
Over the years he turned into somewhat of a the Swedish people's conscience and he was involved in uncovering major judical scandals, as well as arguing against the Swedish monarchy. Instead he favored a republican system based on the Swiss canton electoral system.

In 1973, August 9,
he drowned in a lake in Roslagen, north of Stockholm, in what apperantly was a suicide.

Vilhlem Moberg's parents

A photograph from one of Vilhelm's early school years.

Utvandrarna 1949
Invandrarna 1952
Nybyggarna 1956
Sista brevet till Sverige 1959

Book One introduces Karl Oskar and Kristina Nilsson, their 3 young children, and 11 others who make up a resolute party of Swedes fleeing the poverty, religious persecution,
and social oppression of Småland in 1850.

A bleak April morning in 1850, gathered a few men, women and children from Ljuders parish in Småland to emigrate to North America. They came from the small cottages and the baby-boom country.
They had rebelled against poverty and want, against the endless run-down on the stony fields, the priest and county male adult powers in the 1800s Swedish developing country.
They listened to the blandishments from the new country that had land but farmers and called on farmers but land.
Om country they left, with poor gray villages, briar thickets and silver streams, with cows and goats, says Vilhelm Moberg and the people who did it: Karl Oskar, Kristina and their children, the religious heater Danjel and his gentle wife, Inga-Lena, Robert adventure-lust burning in the blood, and the unmarried prostitute Ulrika of Västergöhl.

Book Two opens in the summer of 1850 as the emigrants disembark in New York City.
Their journey to a new home in Minnesota Territory takes them by riverboat, steam wagon, Great Lakes steamship, and oxcart to Chicago County.

Book Three focuses on Karl Oskar and Kristina
as they adapt to their new homeland and struggle to survive on their new farm.

Book Four portrays the Nilsson family during the turmoil of living through the era
of the Civil War and Dakota Conflict and their prospering in the midst of Minnesota's growing Swedish community of the 1860s-90s.

Bust of Vilhelm Moborg in front of his old school

He is also on a postage stamp.

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