"Knut Hamsun - Photo Gallery". Nobelprize.org.29 May 2012http://www.longitudebooks.com/find/p/64797/mcms.htm l http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1920/hamsun-photo.html.
Growth of the Soil• This Nobel Prize winning novel portrays the challenges and triumphs of living a subsistence life in Norway’s far north.• The novel captures Norway’s historical mode of living that continues to shape Norwegian identity.• Its simplicity transcends time and place.
Themes• Humans’ relationship with the land• Communication / trust / understanding• Ignorance / superstition / prejudice• Natural law, as well as societal norms/laws• Tension between rural and urban values• The cycle of life
Questions to Consider While Reading• How is it obvious that Isak is the archetype of the honorable Norwegian man?• What do you notice about the communication between Isak and Inger? – What does their communication tell us about traditional Norwegian culture and values?• How do you respond to the birth and death of Inger and Isak’s third child? – How does society respond?• What do the contrasts between Eleseus and Sivert demonstrate?