Aksel Sandemose (19 March 1899 - 6 August 1965) was a novelist, born in Nykøbing, Mors Island, Denmark to a Danish father and a Norwegian mother. He is the grandfather of illustrator and children's writer Iben Sandemose. Apart from his writing, in his early years he worked as a teacher, journalist, sailor and lumberjack in Newfoundland.
Literary debut 
His literary debut came in 1923 with his first novel Fortællinger fra Labrador (Stories from Labrador). In 1927 Sandemose made a trip to western Canada sponsored in part by the Canadian Pacific Railway. The result was a series of articles and stories about Canada and three novels: Ross Dane (1928, English translation 1989); En sjømann går i land (A Sailor Goes Ashore) and September which is concerned with how first-generation immigrants become Canadians or persist in remaining a part of the old country.
Life in Norway 
In 1930 he settled in Norway. One year later he published his first book written in Norwegian. Although by then an established author, his breakthrough came in 1933 with the novel En flyktning krysser sitt spor (A Fugitive Crosses His Tracks), English translation 1936). As many of his other works, the novel was based upon his upbringing in Nykøbing at the beginning of the 20th century. In A Fugitive Crosses His Tracks Sandemose develops one of his more famous concepts, the Jante Law, in which he depicts the suppression of the individual's aspirations and personal development by the collective. Sandemose remained in Norway until 1941 when his involvement in the Norwegian resistance forced him to escape to Sweden. After the war he settled in the countryside near Risør in Norway.
Literary theme 
As in A Fugitive Crosses His Tracks the main theme in Sandemose's books is the evil that people inflict on others by narrow-mindedness and limited imagination. This is developed in a wryly humorous form in books that mix loose stories with comments and digressions. In the book which most poignantly follows this pattern, Varulven (The Werewolf) (1958), the evil, in the form of the werewolf, eventually leads to murder because a rigidly brought up girl cannot accept unconventional magnanimity.
- 1923 Fortællinger fra Labrador
- 1924 Ungdomssynd
- 1924 Mænd fra Atlanten
- 1924 Storme ved jævndøgn
- 1927 Klabavtermanden
- 1928 Ross Dane
- 1931 En sjømann går i land
- 1932 Klabautermannen
- 1933 En flyktning krysser sitt spor
- 1936 Vi pynter oss med horn
- 1939 September
- 1945 Tjærehandleren
- 1946 Det svundne er en drøm
- 1949 Alice Atkinson og hennes elskere
- 1950 En palmegrønn øy
- 1958 Varulven
- 1960 Murene rundt Jeriko
- 1961 Felicias bryllup
- 1963 Mytteriet på barken Zuidersee
In addition he wrote a large number of essays and articles.
In English 
- The Werewolf, trans. by Gustaf Lannestock, University of Wisconsin Press (2002), ISBN 0-299-03744-4
- Aksel Sandemose and Canada: A Scandinavian Writer's Perception of the Canadian Prairies in the 1920s by Christopher S. Hale (Regina, Saskatchewan: Canadian Plains Research Center, 2005)
"The worst thing the Germans did was to let stupidity loose in the land."
"It was a burden he carried, an ineradicable interest for the essence of stupidity, its mammoth strength, its invincibility because the stupid never are inhibited of shame and never are contrite when others feel ashamed over them. "
"The strange thing is not that people stoop under the yoke, but that there are others who care about laying it on them."
"How can it be that we feel ashamed over the destructive instincts of others?"
"The first that happened was this: We don’t want to live if the Germans win this war! By this, they had from the start forced us to stake it all on one card. "
"Stupidity will never die. It is simply too stupid to die."
- (Danish) Sandemosearkivet