KÄLLOR OCH PÖLAR Kritiska perspektiv och litterära ideal i Vilhelm Ekelunds Böcker och vandringar (1923)
Sammanfattning: This essay examines the critical perspectives and literary ideals of the author Vilhelm Ekelund (1880–1949) as they are indicated in the texts of his book Böcker och vandringar. Från Studie-år i Tyskland (1923). The essay’s examination is inspired by the function of valuing from theories of literature criticism, while keeping in mind the meta-character of much of Ekelund’s writing. The results suggest that Ekelund saw literature as an artform not to be sold as a mere merchandise on a market; the author is not a producer as much as an artistic creator. The results further suggest that Ekelund held an ambivalent attitude towards poetry as a genre at the time of writing the texts; that he valued classical and classicistic literature but could also value literature from the romantic tradition; that he valued clear and short writing rather than adorned prose or poetry. The most important feature of literature is its connection to life itself. Ekelund despised literary critics of his day. He himself wrote about literature, but not as a mere reporting of what had been written: he continues writing in a dialogue with the literary works. Finally, Ekelund has a pronounced elitist side to him that scorns philistines that merely show off literary interests. True artists do not write for large audiences, but for few readers. Widespread success can suggest bad literature.
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