Guardian of Memory: Halldór Laxness, Saga Editor


  • Christopher Crocker



ABSTRACT: During the 1940s the Icelandic novelist Halldór Laxness embarked on a project to oversee the publication of five medieval sagas. The project emerged as a response to certain editorial practices common to the time and, like many of Halldór’s endeavours, invited no small measure of controversy. In fact, Halldór’s publication venture resulted in a legal battle with the Icelandic government, from which he ultimately emerged victorious. An examination of his editorial project and its background demonstrates much about Halldór’s own understanding of the medieval sagas and the wider significance of the saga heritage in the context of modern Icelandic society and culture. Moreover, this project was also intimately connected to Halldór’s own artistic pursuits at the time and in the years that followed, and thus provides important insight into the writer he was and the writer he was yet to become.




How to Cite

Crocker, C. (2019). Guardian of Memory: Halldór Laxness, Saga Editor. Scandinavian-Canadian Studies, 26, 110–131.