Torgny Lindgren

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Torgny Lindgren
Torgny Lindgren.JPG
Lindgren in 2007
Born (1938-06-16) 16 June 1938 (age 78)
Raggsjö, Norsjö, Västerbotten, Sweden
Occupation Poet, novelist
Nationality Swedish
Period 1965–
Notable works
Spouse Stina
  • Aina
  • Ylva
  • Torgils

Gustav Torgny Lindgren (born 16 June 1938) is a Swedish writer.

Lindgren is the son of Andreas Lindgren and Helga Björk. He studied in Umeå to become a teacher and worked as a teacher until the middle of the 1970s. He was for several years active as a local politician for the Swedish Social Democratic Party. In the 1980s he converted to the Catholic faith.

Lindgren began as a poet in 1965 but had to wait until 1982 for his breakthrough, with The Way of a Serpent (Swedish: Ormens väg på hälleberget). Lindgren has been translated into more than thirty languages and is one of Sweden's most internationally successful contemporary writers. He became a member of the Swedish Academy in 1991.

The Way of a Serpent[edit]

The Way of a Serpent tells the story of a farmer family in a poverty-stricken region in the northern parts of Sweden in the nineteenth century. The family formerly owned its land, but had to sell it cheap during a succession of years of famine. The new owner collects his rent as long as there is money in the household, and exploits the women when there is no money.

The way of the serpent is a surprisingly thin novel, considering the width of its content and specifically that it spans over three generations. The language is stark and spartan, and is heavily influenced by the local dialect. The main theme is the family's struggle for survival, where both the mother and the daughters have to contribute to indulge their creditor.

The novel is considered to be one of Lindgren's greatest works, and was made into a film by Bo Widerberg in 1986.


External links[edit]

Cultural offices
Preceded by
Ture Johannisson
Swedish Academy,
Seat No 9

Succeeded by