In this moving and profound novel, Sigurd Hoel explores belief and traitorism through the major character's memories of the underground during World War II in Norway. At the dark center of this work are questions of why certain individuals turn against their own country, their own values, and their own "selves" so to speak. But in this weaving of fact and fiction, the faitIn this moving and profound novel, Sigurd Hoel explores belief and traitorism through the major character's memories of the underground during World War II in Norway. At the dark center of this work are questions of why certain individuals turn against their own country, their own values, and their own "selves" so to speak. But in this weaving of fact and fiction, the faithful and the traitors are not necessarily easily distinguishable. A wonderful tale of adventure and a country's fate by the author of The Road to the World's End (Sun & Moon Press) and The Troll Circle.Sigurd Hoel was for years an editor of the great Norwegian publishing house Gyldendal. He died in 1960....
|Title||:||Meeting at the Milestone|
|Number of Pages||:||400 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Meeting at the Milestone Reviews
Какая неожиданно прекрасная оказалась книга, а ведь еще до самой середины казалось, что это традиционное скандинавское виноватое глядение в черный пупок души, как вдруг все недомолвки главного героя сложились в какой-то захватывающий шпионский сюжет и невероятно правдоподобную историю любви.
Sigurd Hoel (1890-1960) was a prolific acclaimed Norwegian writer of about thirty novels and collections of short stories and articles published in the span of four decades from the 1920s to the 60s. He spent some years in his mid-thirties (during the 1920s) in Germany and France studying and writing. During the German occupation (1940-45) he became active in the Resistance and had to escape to Sweden in 1943. Besides writing, and translating foreign authors’ works to Norwegian, he had an ongoing interest in psychology, politics, governance and languages (English and German, but especially the two official Norwegian languages, landsmål and riksmål).‘Møte ved Milepelen’ (‘Meeting at the Milestone’ is the English translation) was published in 1947, soon after the war, when Norway was preoccupied with the trials of traitors and the meting out of fines and punishments to those who had in some way assisted and collaborated with the Nazi occupiers and the Quisling puppet regime. The novel became a significant part of the private and public debate about what caused about two percent of the Norwegian population to swear allegiance to Hitler’s political megalomania and as much as another five percent to cooperate with, and financially benefit from, dealing with the Nazis. Hoel drew on his own experiences from his Norwegian pre-war environment, active wartime resistance to the occupiers, and his Swedish exile to write this book.The novel, which is narrated anonymously by ‘The Spotless One’, as he was called by his Resistance compatriots, is comprised of four parts. The first is made up from notes made in 1947 about events from 1943. He is renting a property in the capital Oslo which is part of the underground network to temporarily hide and shield resistance workers from being caught, interrogated, tortured, imprisoned and/or executed. Those who have found shelter there will be helped to escape to Sweden. The second part contains the notes he made in 1943 about friends and acquaintances from his youth in which he analyzes the occurrences which might have contributed early on to some of them becoming members of the Norwegian Nazi party. He details his conflicts and confrontations with some of them. He also relates his personal experiences in the early 20s that include two relationships with young women. These are events that have a large bearing on what happens twenty years later, related in the third part of the book from notes made during his Swedish sojourn in 1944. In this part we learn what happened when he went on a mission to a southern town to meet with a Resistance cell to try to discover which one of its members was leaking information to the enemy. He makes dramatic discoveries and is caught and subjected to torture but escapes with the assistance of an unlikely rescuer. The fourth part is an introspective postscript written in Norway in 1947 in which he tries to make sense of his life’s failures, his guilt and the role responsibility plays in keeping personal honor. He weaves a mental picture of how each person is assigned a grid on which to weave the fabric of life, the emotions, griefs and joys, accidents and coincidences providing the colors and patterns of the material. This novel asks more questions than it provides answers to about how and why people make the critical choices they do. It is a wonderful psychological and analytical wartime drama which has become a classic of Norwegian literature.
Surprising ending!I really liked it though. It was intriguing and exiting, always kept the reader a little on edge. At the same time it opened up for reflection over and consideration of our time's big mysteries: Why did so many choose Nazism under WWII?Nevertheless it has all the necessary aspects for a good read: love, friendship, problems and amazing descriptions.
Beautifully written, shocking, a wonderful reading experience. I raced through it for my book club meeting so will need to review final paragraphs and think about his stated project goal and its final form. Well worth rereading.
”It is difficult to speak honestly about oneself. Difficult to speak honestly alotogether, perhaps. But about oneself? And one’s own youth?“We forget. We distort. We misrepresent and idolize – and constantly falsify. Even at the moment we experience something we falsify it, tailoring it, trimming a heel here and slicing a toe there, to make it agree with our wishful thinking about ourselves and others.“But we’re worst of all where the past is concerned. For there, as a rule, we don’t even have a checker, except ourselves.[“] A book of layered recollection – it is set up as a series of papers written by the fictional protagonist. There is a set – framing the majority of the work – written in 1947. Most of this set provides backstory around the motivation for writing the other two sets of papers, but also provides some ruminations and concluding thoughts, and ties up some loose ends. The majority of the book though is a set of writings done by the fictional protagonist in 1943 and 1944, during the years of the German occupation of Norway. The papers are pretty evenly divided between the narrator’s “present day” activities with the Norwegian resistance and events of his youth, in the early 1920s in Norway.The book is, at its heart, a wrestling with the problem of why individuals turn traitor – obviously in context we’re talking about Norwegians joining the Nazi Party during the occupation – and the book examines both the present day actions of individuals – known to the narrator – who have turned Nazi, and their actions when the narrator knew them in the 1920’s. I realize that I’ll continue to pry and ponder. I perceive a hope, which I myself know to be wild and witless: namely, that by pondering, probing, and prying into the past, I’ll be better able to understand the present. The book does manage, to fairly great success, to explore the roots of present day decisions as filtered through past actions. And by that, I mean, that the book doesn’t actually provide easy answers to any of the questions it sets out to explore. It instead shows a multitude of answers to the same question, most of them more suggestions than answers, and leaves it to the reader to attempt to provide a unifying answer to the whole (ha! good luck with that). The examinations and descriptions of those individuals turned Nazi are all satisfying, and present a wide-ranging swathe of intellectual, economical, and social backgrounds that is successful in its subtlety. You’re not going to be presented with explicit cruelty or sociopathology from any of these characters – the seeds for turning traitor are buried deeper than that; and in many the seeds are simply not present to the outside observer.Sigurd Hoel was actually a member of the resistance during WWII, and would likely have known individuals in his youth that would later join the Nazi Party; as such, this book feels like an important document – albeit a fictional one – exploring the youths of those who would be adults during the Nazi Occupation; detailing a small portion of the Norwegian resistance during that occupation; and struggling with the motivation that drives one to turn traitor. In all that the book is surprisingly even-handed; the traitorism of the individuals is explicitly condemned, but the compassion with which their motivations are explored is considerably more nuanced, and lifts this to work to a place of significance. A sadly under-read work.
Wow. I was searching for a Norwegian classic for studying authoritarianism in literature. But wow. The narrator reminds be of Fitzgerald's Nick Carraway. The plot is as tragic as it can get. The question Hoel repeatedly keeps asking is "why did anyone become Nazis?" I think the answer can account for other "illnesses" too... *throwing a glance across the Atlantic*