|Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke|
Karen Blixen in 1957
|Born||17 April 1885
|Died||7 September 1962
|Notable works||Out of Africa, Seven Gothic Tales, Shadows on the Grass, Babette's Feast|
Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke (Danish: [kʰɑːɑn ˈb̥leɡ̊sn̩]; 17 April 1885 – 7 September 1962), née Karen Christenze Dinesen, was a Danish author, also known by the pen name Isak Dinesen, who wrote works in Danish, French and English. She also at times used the pen names Tania Blixen, Osceola, and Pierre Andrézel.
Blixen is best known for Out of Africa, an account of her life while living in Kenya, and for one of her stories, Babette's Feast, both of which have been adapted into Academy Award-winning motion pictures. She is also noted for her Seven Gothic Tales, particularly in Denmark.
Though considered several times for the Nobel Prize in Literature, Blixen was one of the many writers who never won the prestigious award.
Karen Dinesen was born in the manor house of Rungstedlund, north of Copenhagen, the daughter of Ingeborg (née Westenholz 1856–1939) whose grandfather Andreas Nicolai Hansen (1798–1873) had been a successful Copenhagen merchant, and Wilhelm Dinesen (1845–1895), a writer and army officer from a family of Jutland landowners. The second oldest in a family of three sisters and two brothers, her younger brother, Thomas Dinesen, grew up to earn the Victoria Cross in the First World War. Her mother Ingeborg came from a wealthy Unitarian bourgeois merchant family, unlike her father who had an aristocratic background closely connected to the monarchy, the established church and conservative politics.
Dinesen's early years had been strongly influenced by her father Wilhelm Dinesen, thanks to his relaxed manner and his love of the outdoor life. He also wrote throughout his life and his memoir, Boganis Jagtbreve (Letters From the Hunt) became a minor classic in Danish literature. From August 1872 to December 1873, Wilhelm had lived among the Chippewa Indians in Wisconsin, where he fathered a daughter. On returning to Denmark, he suffered from syphilis which resulted in bouts of deep depression. After conceiving a child out of wedlock with his maid Anna Rasmussen, he was devastated by breaking his promise to his mother-in-law, 'Mama' Mary Lucinde Westenholz, to remain faithful to his wife Ingeborg. As a result, he hanged himself on 28 March 1895 when Karen was almost ten.
Karen Dinesen's life at Rungstedlund changed significantly after her father's death, from then on dominated by her Westenholz family. Unlike her brothers who attended school, she was educated at home by her maternal grandmother and by her aunt, Mary B. Westenholz, who brought her up in the staunch Unitarian tradition. Aunt Bess, as Westenholz was known to Dinesen, had a significant impact on her niece and they engaged in lively discussions and correspondence on women's rights and relationships between men and women. During her early years, Dinesen spent part of her time at her mother's family home, the Mattrup seat farm near Horsens, while in later years there were visits to Folehavegård, an estate near Hørsholm which had belonged to her father's family. Longing for the freedom she had enjoyed when her father was alive, she was able to find some satisfaction in telling her younger sister Ellen hair-raising good-night stories, partly inspired by Danish folk tales and Icelandic sagas. In 1905, these led to her Grjotgard Ålvesøn og Aud in which her literary talent began to emerge. Around this time, she also published fiction in Danish periodicals under the pseudonym Osceola, the name of her father's dog, which she had often walked in her father's company.
In 1898, Dinesen and her two sisters spent a year in Switzerland where she learnt to speak French with the same ease as she had acquired English at home. In 1902, she attended Charlotte Sode's art school in Copenhagen before continuing her studies at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts under Viggo Johansen (1903–06). In her mid-twenties, she also visited Paris, London and Rome on study trips. While still young, Dinesen spent many of her holidays with her paternal cousin's family, the Blixen-Fineckes, in Skåne in the south of Sweden. She first fell madly in love with the dashing equestrian Hans but he did not reciprocate. She therefore decided to accept the favours of his twin brother, Baron Bror Blixen-Finecke, announcing their engagement on 23 December 1912 to the family's general surprise. Given the difficulties both were experiencing in settling in Denmark, the family suggested they should move abroad. Their common uncle, Aage Westenholz (1859–1935) who had made a fortune in Siam, suggested they should go to Kenya to start a coffee farm. He and his sister Ingeborg Dinesen invested 150,000 Danish crowns in the venture. Early in 1913, Bror Blixen-Finecke left for Kenya, followed by his fiancée in December.
Life in Kenya
Soon after Dinesen arrived in Kenya, which at the time was part of British East Africa, she and Blixen married in Mombassa on January 14, 1914. After her marriage, she was known as Baroness Blixen, and used the title until 1929, when her ex-spouse remarried. Initially, they planned to raise cattle on their farm, but were convinced that coffee would be more profitable. The Karen Coffee Company was established by Aage Westerholz, who chose the name after his daughter Karen, Blixen's cousin, rather than to create an association with Karen Blixen. The couple soon established their first farm, M'Bagathi, in the Great Lakes area, but quickly ran into difficulties caused by the outbreak of the First World War. Fighting between the Germans and British in East Africa led to a shortage of workers and supplies. Nevertheless, in 1916, the Karen Coffee Company purchased a larger farm, M'Bogani, near the Ngong Hills to the north of Nairobi. It covered 6,000 acres of land, of which 600 were used for a coffee plantation. The remainder were used by the natives for grazing while 2,000 acres of virgin forest were left untouched.
The land was not suited for coffee cultivation, being too high in elevation. The couple hired local workers, predominantly the Kikuyu people who lived on the farmlands at the time of their arrival but there were also Wakamba, Kavirondo, Swahili and Masai. Initially Bror Blixen-Finecke worked the farm, but it soon became evident that he had little interest in it and preferred to leave running the farm to Blixen while he went on safari. For the first time, English became the language she used daily. About the couple's early life in the African Great Lakes region, Karen Blixen later wrote,
Here at long last one was in a position not to give a damn for all conventions, here was a new kind of freedom which until then one had only found in dreams!
Karen Blixen and her husband were quite different in education and temperament, and Bror Blixen was unfaithful to his wife. She was diagnosed with syphilis toward the end of their first year of marriage in 1915. According to her biographer Judith Thurman, she contracted the disease from her husband. She returned to Denmark in June 1915 for treatment which proved successful. Although Blixen's illness was eventually cured (some uncertainty exists), it created medical anguish for years to come. By 1919, the marriage had run into serious difficulties, causing her husband to request a divorce in 1920. Against her wishes, the couple separated in 1921, and were officially divorced in 1925. Bror Blixen was dismissed as the farm manager by Aage Westenholz, chair of the Karen Coffee Company, and Karen Blixen took over its management officially in 1921.
In 1918, Karen Blixen met the English big game hunter Denys Finch Hatton (1887–1931), an English army officer and aristocrat. He often travelled back and forth between Africa and England and would visit her occasionally. After her separation from her husband she and Finch Hatton developed a close friendship which eventually became a long-term love affair. In a letter to her brother Thomas in 1924, she wrote: "I believe that for all time and eternity I am bound to Denys, to love the ground he walks upon, to be happy beyond words when he is here, and to suffer worse than death many times when he leaves..." But other letters in her collections show that the relationship was unstable, and that Blixen's increasingly dependent behavior upon Finch Hatton, who was intensely independent was at issue.
Finch Hatton used Blixen's farmhouse as a home base between 1926 and 1931, when on safari with his clients. He died in the crash of his de Havilland Gipsy Moth biplane in March 1931. At the same time, the failure of the coffee plantation, as a result of mismanagement, the height of the farm, drought and the falling price of coffee caused by the worldwide economic depression, forced Blixen to abandon her beloved estate. The family corporation sold the land to a residential developer, and Blixen returned Denmark in August 1931 to live with her mother. She remained in Rungstedlund for the rest of her life.
Life as a writer
While still in Kenya, Blixen had written to her brother Thomas, "I have begun to do what we brothers and sisters do when we don't know what else to resort to, I have started to write a book... I have been writing in English because I thought it would be more profitable." On returning to Denmark, she continued writing in earnest. Though her first book, Seven Gothic Tales, was completed in 1933, she had difficulty finding a publisher and used her brother's contacts with Dorothy Canfield to help find a printer for her work. It was published in the US in 1934 under the pseudonym Isak Dinesen, though the publisher refused to give Blixon an advance and had discouraged use of a pseudonym. When it was chosen as a Book-of-the-Month Club selection, sales skyrocketed. This first book, highly enigmatic and more metaphoric than Gothic, won wide recognition in the United States, and publication of the book in Great Britain and Denmark followed, though with difficulty. Unable to find a translator she was satisfied with, Blixen prepared the Danish versions herself, though they are not translations, but rather close versions of the stories with differing details. Blixen's explanation for the difference was that she, "...very much wanted it to be published in Danish as an original Danish book, and not in any—no matter how good—translation". The Danish critics were not enthusiastic about the book and were annoyed, according to Blixen, that it had first been published abroad. Blixen never again published a book in English first. Either her books were released first in Danish, or simultaneously in Danish and English.
Her second book, now the best known of her works, Out of Africa, was published in 1937 and its success firmly established her reputation as an author. Having learned from her previous experience, Blixen published the book first in Denmark and England and then in the U.S. Garnering another Book-of-the-Month Club choice, Blixen was assured of not only sales for this new work, but also renewed interest in Seven Gothic Tales. She was awarded the Tagea Brandt Rejselegat (a Danish prize for women in the arts or academic life) in 1939. The work brought much review from critics who were not only concerned with the literary appraisal of the book, as much as they were in defining Blixen's own intentions and morality. Post-colonial criticism has linked her with contemporary British writers and in some cases branded her among the white European aristocrats who were morally bankrupt. Danish scholars have not typically made judgments about her morality, perhaps understanding that while elements of racism and colonial prejudices, given the context and era are inherent in the work, her position as an outsider, a Dane and a woman, made evaluating her, rather than the work, more complex. Some critics, including Carolyn Martin Shaw and Raoul Granqvist, have judged her to be a racist and supremacist, while other critics like Abdul R. JanMohamed recognized both her romanticized colonial attitudes and her understanding of colonial problems, as well as her concern and respect for African nationalists.
Blixen worked on a novel she called Albondocani for many years, hoping to produce a volume in the style of Les Hommes de Bonne Volunté by Jules Romain, with interwoven stories across several volumes. The main character, Harun al-Rashid, was featured in One Thousand and One Nights. In actuality, she was simultaneously working on several collections at once, categorizing them according to both theme and whether she thought they were marketable, written mostly to make money, or literary. She jumped between writing the collections of stories for Albondocani to Anecdotes of Destiny, New Gothic Tales and New Winter’s Tales. Almost all of her Blixen's tales from the 1940s and 1950s follow a traditional style of storytelling, and most take place against the background of the 19th century or earlier periods. Concerning her deliberately old-fashioned style, Blixen mentioned in several interviews that she wanted to express a spirit that no longer existed in modern times, one of being rather than just doing. Her narratives hover between skillfully crafted illusion and romanticism, with a keen knowledge of the preferred tastes of her audience. Blixen crafted her English tales in a more direct manner and her Danish tales in a 19th century writing style which she felt would appeal more to them.
Five years after the publication of Out of Africa, Blixen released a collection of short stories called Winter's Tales (1942; Danish: Vinter-eventyr). A departure from her previous Gothic works, the stories reflect the starkness of the times, occupation tinged with courage and pride, and hope for the future. The stories do not reflect resistance, but resilience, and explore the interdependence of opposites. She examines shame versus pride in "The Heroine", cowardice and courage in "The Pearls", master and servant in "The Invincible Slave-Owners", and life versus death as well as freedom versus imprisonment in "Peter and Rosa". In "Sorrow-acre", the best-known story of the collection, Blixen explored victimization and oppression. Because of the war, she had to be creative about getting the manuscript published, traveling to Stockholm and meeting with employees at both the American and British embassies. The Americans were unable to ship personal items, but the British embassy agreed, shipping the document to her publisher in the United States. Blixen did not receive further communication about Winter's Tales until the war ended when she received correspondence praising the stories from American troops who had read them in the Armed Services Editions during the conflict.
Also during World War II, when Denmark was occupied by the Germans, Blixen started her only full-length novel, the introspective tale The Angelic Avengers, under another pseudonym, Pierre Andrezel. Though written in Danish, she claimed it was a translation of a French work written in the interwar period and denied being its author. The book was published in 1944 and nominated for a third Book-of-the-Month Club selection. Blixen initially did not want the book to be nominated, but eventually accepted the distinction. The horrors experienced by the young heroines were interpreted as an allegory of Nazism, though Blixen also denied that interpretation, claiming instead that it was only a distraction for her to escape the feeling of being imprisoned by the war. In 1956, in an interview for The Paris Review, she finally acknowledged that she was the author, saying it was her "illegitimate child".
Another collection of stories, Last Tales (Danish: Sidste fortællinger) was published in 1957, followed the next year by the collection Anecdotes of Destiny (Danish: Skæbne-Anekdoter). Last Tales included seven stories that Blixen had intended to be part of Albondocani. It also included sections called New Gothic Tales and New Winter's Tales. Blixen planned for Anecdotes of Destiny to be a final part of the Last Tales collection in 1953, but as she prepared all the stories, she decided to release Anecdotes as a separate volume, and originally wanted to release both Last Tales and Anecdotes simultaneously. Because of publication issues, it was delayed for another year. The most famous tale from Anecdotes is "Babette's Feast", about a chef who spends her entire 10,000-franc lottery prize to prepare a final, spectacular gourmet meal. The story evaluates relationships and examines whether the austere but charitable life led by the sisters, in adherence to an ideal, is less true to faith than the passionate gift from the heart of their housekeeper. The story was reproduced in a film directed and written by Gabriel Axel in 1987, winning the 1988 Best Foreign Film Oscar. The Immortal Story was adapted to the screen in 1968 by Orson Welles, a great admirer of Blixen's work and life. Welles later attempted to film The Dreamers, but only a few scenes were ever completed.
Writing despite severe illness, Blixen finished the African sketches Shadows on the Grass in 1960. Her posthumously published works include Carnival: Entertainments and Posthumous Tales (1977), Daguerreotypes, and Other Essays (1979) and Letters from Africa, 1914–31 (1981).
Blixen's concept of the art of the story is perhaps most directly expressed in the story "The Cardinal's First Tale" from her fifth book, Last Tales.
Though Danish, Blixen wrote her books in English and then translated her work into her native tongue. Critics describe her English as having unusual beauty.[who?] Dorothy Canfield described "The Angelic Avengers" in her Book-of-the-Month Club News review, as "of superlatively fine literary quality, written with distinction in an exquisite style". Her later books usually appeared simultaneously in both Danish and English. As an author, she kept her public image as a charismatic, mysterious old Baroness with an insightful third eye, and established herself as an inspiring figure in Danish culture, although shunning the mainstream.
Blixen was widely respected by contemporaries such as Ernest Hemingway and Truman Capote, and during her tour of the United States in 1959, writers who visited her included Arthur Miller, E. E. Cummings, and Pearl Buck. She also met actress Marilyn Monroe with her husband Arthur Miller. The socialite Babe Paley gave a lunch in her honour at St.Regis with Truman and Cecil Beaton as guests, and Gloria Vanderbilt gave her a dress by Mainbocher. The photographer Richard Avedon took one of his famous pictures of her during her stay in New York. She was admired by Cecil Beaton and the patron Pauline de Rothschild of the Rothschild family.
For her literary accomplishments, Blixen was awarded the Danish Holberg Medal in 1949, the Ingenio et Arti medal in 1950, granted the inaugural Hans Christian Andersen Scholarship of the Danish Writers Association in 1955 and received the Henrik Pontoppidan Memorial Foundation Grant in 1959. Peter Englund, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, described it as "a mistake" that Blixen was not awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature during the 1930s and when Hemingway won the prize in 1954, he stated that Bernard Berenson, Carl Sandberg and Blixon deserved the prize more than he did. Although never awarded the prize, she finished in third place behind Graham Greene in 1961, the year Ivo Andrić was awarded the prize. In 2012, the Nobel records were opened after 50 years and it was revealed that Blixen was among a shortlist of authors considered for the 1962 Nobel Prize in Literature, along with John Steinbeck (the eventual winner), Robert Graves, Lawrence Durrell, and Jean Anouilh. Blixen became ineligible after dying in September of that year.
Illness and death
Although it was widely believed that syphilis continued to plague Blixen throughout her lifetime, extensive tests were unable to reveal evidence of syphilis in her system after 1925. Her writing prowess suggests that she did not suffer from the mental degeneration of late stages of syphilis. She did suffer a mild permanent loss of sensation in her legs that could be attributed to use of the arsenic-based anti-syphilis drug salvarsan.
During the 1950s Blixen's health quickly deteriorated, and in 1955 she had a third of her stomach removed because of an ulcer. Writing became impossible, although she did several radio broadcasts.
In her analysis of Blixen's medical history, Linda Donelson points out that Blixen wondered if her pain was psychosomatic even though she blamed it in public on the emotive syphilis: "Whatever her belief about her illness, the disease suited the artist's design for creating her own personal legend."
Unable to eat, Blixen died in 1962 at Rungstedlund, her family's estate, at the age of 77, apparently of malnutrition. The source of her abdominal problems remains unknown, although gastric syphilis, manifested by gastric ulcers during secondary and tertiary syphilis, remains a possibility.
Blixen lived most of her life at the family estate Rungstedlund, which was acquired by her father in 1879. The property is located in Rungsted, 24 kilometres (15 mi) north of Copenhagen, Denmark's capital. The oldest parts of the estate date to 1680, and it had been operated as both an inn and a farm. Most of Blixen's writing was done in Ewald's Room, named after author Johannes Ewald.
The property is managed by the Rungstedlund Foundation, founded by Blixen and her siblings. It was opened to the public as a museum in 1991. In 2013 The Karen Blixen Museum joined the Nordic museum portal.
The Nairobi suburb that stands on the land where Blixen farmed coffee is now named Karen. Blixen herself declared in her later writings that "the residential district of Karen" was "named after me". And Blixen's biographer, Judith Thurman, was told by the developer who bought the farm from the family corporation that he planned to name the district after Blixen. A few thousand feet from her home is a street named Ndege (bird / aeroplane) Road, which was named after the place where Finch-Hatton used to land his plane.
Blixen was known to her friends not as "Karen" but as "Tanne". The family corporation that owned her farm was incorporated as the "Karen Coffee Company". The chairman of the board was her uncle, Aage Westenholz, who may have named the company after his own daughter Karen. However, the developer seems to have named the district after its famous author/farmer rather than the name of her company.
There is a Karen Blixen Coffee House and Museum in the district of Karen, located near Blixen's former home.
Karen Blixen's portrait was featured on the front of the Danish 50-krone banknote, 1997 series, from 7 May 1999 to 25 August 2005. She also featured on Danish postage stamps that were issued in 1980 and 1996.
Blixen's great-nephew, Anders Westenholz, was also an accomplished writer, and has written books about her and her literature, among other things.
I had a farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills. – Out of Africa, 1937
To be lonely is a state of mind, something completely other than physical solitude; when modern authors rant about the soul's intolerable loneliness, it is only proof of their own intolerable emptiness. – Out of Africa, 1937
I know the cure for everything: Salt water...in one form or another: Sweat, tears or the sea.– The Deluge at Norderney, Seven Gothic Tales, 1934
When in the end, the day came on which I was going away, I learned the strange learning that things can happen which we ourselves cannot possibly imagine, either beforehand, or at the time when they are taking place, or afterwards when we look back on them." – Out of Africa, 1937
He belonged to the olden days, and I have never met another German who has given me so strong an impression of what Imperial Germany was and stood for." – About General Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck, German commander during the East Africa Campaign.
Through all the world there goes one long cry from the heart of the artist: Give me leave to do my utmost!" – "Babette's Feast", 1953
Some of Blixen's works were published posthumously, including tales previously removed from earlier collections and essays she wrote for various occasions.
- The Hermits (1907, published in Tilskueren under the name Osceola)
- The Ploughman (1907, published in a Danish journal under the name Osceola)
- The de Cats Family (1909, published in Tilskueren)
- The Revenge of Truth (1926, published in Denmark)
- Seven Gothic Tales (1934 in USA, 1935 in Denmark)
- Out of Africa (1937 in Denmark and England, 1938 in USA)
- Winter's Tales (1942)
- The Angelic Avengers (1946)
- Last Tales (1957)
- Anecdotes of Destiny (1958) (including Babette's Feast)
- Shadows on the Grass (1960 in England and Denmark, 1961 in USA)
- Ehrengard (posthumous 1963, USA)
- Carnival: Entertainments and Posthumous Tales (posthumous 1977, USA)
- Daguerreotypes and Other Essays (posthumous 1979, USA)
- On Modern Marriage and Other Observations (posthumous 1986, USA)
- Letters from Africa, 1914–1931 (posthumous 1981, USA)
- Karen Blixen in Danmark: Breve 1931–1962 (posthumous 1996, Denmark)
- Karen Blixen i Afrika. En brevsamling, 1914–31 i IV bind (posthumous 2013, Denmark)
- Asteroid 3318 Blixen, named after the author
- Banknotes of Denmark, 1997 series
- Karen Blixen Museum, Hørsholm, Denmark
- Jurij Moskvitin, friend of Blixen
- Jørgensen & Juhl 2016.
- Engberg 2003.
- Wivel 2013.
- Updike 1986, p. 1.
- Schmidt-Madsen 2012, pp. 18-23.
- Winther 2015.
- Bjerg 2014.
- Isaacson 1991, p. 319.
- Stambaugh 1998.
- Lorenzetti 1999.
- Karen Blixen Museet 2016.
- Hannah 1971, p. 207.
- Thurman 1983, p. 150.
- Wheeler 2010, p. 153.
- Encyclopædia Britannica 2016.
- Dinesen 1984, p. 419.
- Updike 1986, p. 2.
- Alexanderson 2008, p. 234.
- Jensen, #3 2010.
- Brantly 2013, p. 30.
- Brantly 2013, p. 44.
- Brantly 2013, p. 36-37.
- Brantly 2013, p. 38.
- Hansen & Kynoch 2003, p. 36.
- Hansen & Kynoch 2003, p. 38.
- Hansen & Kynoch 2003, p. 10.
- Stecher-Hansen 2006, p. 38.
- Walter 1956.
- Henriksen 1967, p. 341.
- Behrendt 2012.
- Welty 1994, p. 136.
- Whissen 1976, p. 58.
- Whissen 1976, p. 59.
- Whissen 1976, p. 60.
- Hansen & Kynoch 2003, p. 30.
- Stecher-Hansen 2006, p. 33.
- Welty 1994, p. 137.
- Hansen & Kynoch 2003, p. 37.
- Gagné 2008, pp. 226, 228.
- Kempley 1988.
- Gagné 2008, pp. 229-230.
- Gagné 2008, p. 232.
- Canby 1988.
- BBC News 2014.
- The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed 2015.
- Jensen, #1 2010.
- Jensen, #2 2010.
- Rising & Ritter 2010.
- Flood 2012.
- Flood 2013.
- Stuttaford 2007.
- Donelson 2010.
- The New York Times 1962.
- Norbyhus 2010.
- Dinesen 1989, p. 458.
- Thurman 1983, p. 141.
- Danmarks Nationalbank 2005, pp. 14-15.
- Literary Stamp Collecting 2012.
- Farwell, The Great War in Africa, p. 105.
- Karen Blixen Museet 2015.
- Curry 2012.
- Alexanderson, Kris (2008). "Blixen, Karen". In Smith, Bonnie G. The Oxford Encyclopedia of Women in World History: 4 Volume Set. Volume 1: Abayomi-Czech Republic. New York, New York: Oxford University Press, USA. pp. 234–235. ISBN 978-0-19-514890-9.
- Behrendt, Poul (5 September 2012). "Karen Blixen and Isak Dinesen: One woman, two authors". News KU. Copenhagen, Denmark: University of Copenhagen. Archived from the original on 2 October 2016. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
- Bjerg, Hans Christian (28 May 2014). "Aage Westenholz". Dansk Biografisk Leksikon (in Danish). Copenhagen, Denmark: Gyldendal. Archived from the original on 23 October 2016. Retrieved 23 October 2016.
- Brantly, Susan (December 2013). Christiansen, Lene Bull; Hvenegård-Lassen, Kirsten; Hansen, Nanna Kirstine Leets, eds. "Karen Blixen's Challenges to Postcolonial Criticism" (PDF). KULT Postkolonial Temaserie. Made in Denmark—Investigations of the Dispersal of “Danishness”. Roskilde, Denmark: Roskilde University. 11: 29–44. ISSN 1904-1594. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- Canby, Vincent (4 March 1988). "Film: 'Babette's Feast'". New York City, New York: The New York Times. Archived from the original on 25 May 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- Curry, Thomas J. (October 2012). "Babette's Feast and the Goodness of God". Journal of Religion & Film. Omaha, Nebraska: University of Nebraska. 16 (2). ISSN 1092-1311. article 10.
- Dinesen, Isak (1984). Letters from Africa, 1914-1931. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 978-0-226-15311-7.
- Dinesen, Isak (1989). Out of Africa and Shadows on the grass (International Vintage ed. ed.). New York, New York: Vintage Books. ISBN 978-0679724759.
- Donelson, Linda (2010). "Karen Blixen's Medical History: A New Look". Karen Blixen. Iowa City, Iowa. Retrieved 25 December 2010. Excerpted from Donelson, Linda (1998). Out of Isak Dinesen in Africa. Iowa City, Iowa: Coulsong Press. ISBN 0-9643893-9-8.
- Engberg, Charlotte (2003). "Karen Blixen (1885 - 1962)". Kvinfo (in Danish). Copenhagen, Denmark: Danish Centre for Gender, Equality and Diversity. Archived from the original on 20 April 2016. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
- Flood, Alison (5 January 2012). "JRR Tolkien's Nobel prize chances dashed by 'poor prose'". London, England: The Guardian. Archived from the original on 1 February 2013.
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- Gagné, Laurie Brands (Spring 2008). "The Artist as Peacemaker: "Babette's Feast" as a Narrative of Reconciliation". Renascence. Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Marquette University. 60 (3): 224–235. doi:10.5840/articledoi. ISSN 0034-4346. Retrieved 19 November 2016. – via EBSCO's Academic Search Complete (subscription required)
- Hannah, Donald (1971). "Isak Dinesen" and Karen Blixen: the mask and the reality. New York, New York: Random House. ISBN 978-037-00011-4-2.
- Hansen, Frantz Leander; Kynoch, Gaye (translator) (2003). The Aristocratic Universe of Karen Blixen: Destiny and the Denial of Fate. Brighton, England: Sussex Academic Press. ISBN 978-1-903900-33-8.
- Henriksen, Aage (March 1967). "A Portrait of Karen Blixen". Orbis Litterarum. Hoboken, New Jersey: Blackwell Publishing Ltd. 22 (1): 319–342. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0730.1967.tb00467.x. ISSN 1600-0730. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
- Isaacson, Lanae Hjortsvang (1991). "Isak Dinesen (a.k.a. Karen [Tanne] Christence Dinesen Blixon-Finecke)". In Wilson, Katharina M. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. I: A-K. New York, New York: Garland Publishing. ISBN 978-0-8240-8547-6.
- Jensen, Niels (25 August 2010). "Dansk Forfatterforening" [Danish Writers Association Awards]. Litteraturpriser Denmark (in Danish). Archived from the original on 5 August 2016. Retrieved 3 November 2016. List of recipients. Self-published, but with references .
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- Kempley, Rita (8 April 1988). "'Babette's Feast'". Washington, D.C.: The Washington Post. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- Lorenzetti, Linda Rice (1 September 1999). "'Out of Africa': Karen Blixen's coffee years". Tea & Coffee Trade Journal. Kent, England: Lockwood Trade Journal Co., Inc. by Bell Publishing Ltd. ISSN 0040-0343. Retrieved 3 November 2016 – via HighBeam Research. (subscription required (. ))
- Rising, Malin; Ritter, Karl (6 October 2010). "Poets buzzed about for Nobel literature prize". Washington, D.C.: The Washington Times. AP. Archived from the original on 4 October 2011.
There were some prizes that went wrong, there were a number of people that the academy missed," Englund said. "This is not the Vatican of literature, we are not infallible in that way." Englund declined to name the prizes that he believed went wrong, but said it was a mistake to not give the prize to Danish author Karen Blixen, also known by her pen name, Isak Dinesen, who wrote Out of Africa about her life in Kenya in the early 1930s. Other famous writers who were not awarded the prize include Leo Tolstoy, Marcel Proust, James Joyce and Graham Greene.
- Schmidt-Madsen, Sune de Souza (2012). En lille bog om Blixen [A Small Book about Blixen] (in Danish). Copenhagen, Denmark: Lindhardt og Ringhof. ISBN 978-87-11-38035-2.
- Stambaugh, Sara (28 October 1998). "Isak Dinesen in America". The Canadian Initiative for Nordic Studies. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada: University of Alberta. Archived from the original on 19 April 2016. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
- Stecher-Hansen, Marianne (2006). "Picturing Karen Blixen—Artist, Charlatan, Heretic, and Iconoclast: European Storyteller in the American Marketplace" (PDF). The Bridge. Ames, Iowa: Danish American Heritage Society. 29 (2): 25–41. ISSN 0741-1200. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 8 November 2016.
- Stuttaford, Thomas (20 September 2007). "Let's all go pear-shaped: In an age of obesity and anorexia it's vital to understand the best shape and composition for our bodies". The Times. London. (subscription required (. ))
- Thurman, Judith (1983). Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller. New York, New York: St Martin's Press. ISBN 978-0-312-43738-1.
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- Walter, Eugene (Autumn 1956). "Isak Dinesen, The Art of Fiction". The Paris Review. Paris, France: The Paris Review Foundation (14). ISSN 0031-2037. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
- Welty, Eudora (1994). McHaney, Pearl Amelia, ed. Eudora Welty, A Writer's Eye: Collected Book Reviews. Jackson, Mississippi: University Press of Mississippi. ISBN 978-1-60473-582-6.
- Wheeler, Sara (2010). Too Close To The Sun: The Life and Times of Denys Finch Hatton. New York, New York: Random House. ISBN 978-1-4070-5278-6.
- Whissen, Thomas (January 1976). "Without Fear: Isak Einesen's Winter Tales and Occupied Denmark". International Fiction Review. Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada: International Fiction Association. 3 (1): 57–61. ISSN 1911-186X. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
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- Wivel, Ole (29 August 2013). "Karen Blixen". Dansk Biografisk Leksikon (in Danish). Copenhagen, Denmark: Gyldendal. Archived from the original on 21 October 2016. Retrieved 21 October 2016.
- "Babette's Feast director Gabriel Axel dies". London, England: BBC News. 10 February 2014. Archived from the original on 7 March 2014. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- "Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke (1885-1962)". Stamp Community. Literary Stamp Collecting. 19 August 2012. Archived from the original on 21 October 2013. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
- "50 Kroner". The coins and banknotes of Denmark (PDF) (2nd [1. oplag] ed.). Copenhagen, Denmark: Danmarks Nationalbank. 2005. ISBN 87-87251-55-8. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 May 2006.
- "Isak Dinesen". Britannica. London, England: Encyclopædia Britannica. 2016. Retrieved 1 January 2016 – via Encyclopædia Britannica. (subscription required (. ))
- "Isak Dinesen". Encyclopedia. New York City, New York: Columbia University Press. 2015. Archived from the original on 2 January 2016. Retrieved 1 January 2016.
- "Isak Dinesen, Author, Is Dead; Noted for Her Gothic Fantasies; Danish Baroness, 77, Was Creator of Short Stories Set in Romantic Past". New York City, New York: The New York Times. 8 September 1962. Archived from the original on 19 August 2016. (subscription required (. ))
- "Karen Blixen in Africa". Blixen Denmark. Rungsted Kyst, Denmark: Karen Blixen Museet. 2016. Archived from the original on 23 October 2016. Retrieved 23 October 2016.
- "New Europe Stamps will be issued on 9 May 1996". Norbyhus. Cophenhagen, Denmark: Post Denmark, Stamps & Philately. 27 September 2010. Archived from the original on 7 April 2014. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
- "Posthumous Publications". Blixen Denmark. Rungsted Kyst, Denmark: Karen Blixen Museet. 2015. Archived from the original on 16 October 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
- Langbaum, Robert (1975) Isak Dinesen's Art: The Gayety of Vision (University of Chicago Press) ISBN 0-226-46871-2
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Karen Blixen.|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Karen Blixen|
|Library resources about
|By Karen Blixen|
- Karen Blixen – Isak Dinesen website
- Petri Liukkonen. "Karen Blixen". Books and Writers (kirjasto.sci.fi). Archived from the original on 4 July 2013.
- Eugene Walter (Autumn 1956). "Isak Dinesen, The Art of Fiction No. 14". The Paris Review.
- Stambaugh, Sara: Isak Dinesen in America, lecture at the University of Alberta, 28 October 1998
- Karen Blixen Museum, Denmark
- Karen Blixen Museum, Kenya
- Family genealogy
- A model of Karen's house in Rungstedlund in Google's 3D Warehouse, Denmark
- A model of Karen's farm near Nairobi in Google's 3D Warehouse, Kenya