Optimal thought and optimal fitness through reason, logic, science, passion, and wisdom.
Radio Station Change
Radio Station Change

Radio Station Change

Now on the radio: Sweet & Lovely, on Live365.com. The owner says about his station:
This station is strictly dedicated to the popular tunes of the Jazz Age 20’s and the Songbird 30’s. You will NOT find Bigband Swing favorites such as Glen Miller here. You will however find recordings of the finest vocalists of all time such as Lee Morse, Cab Calloway, Rudy Vallee, Ruth Etting, Annette Hanshaw, Jack Smith, Ted Lewis, Gene Austin, Cliff Edwards, Nat Gonella… just to name but a few! …
Good stuff. A change-of-plans day: listen to music, start reading Han of Iceland by Victor Hugo, and lie around feeling tired because I’m a little sick… At Hugo-online.com, they say about Han of Iceland:
It was received with mixed emotions; the writer’s imagination and language was praised, but the spectacular Norwegian setting and the horrible details were questioned. The historic authenticity was non-existent, which Hugo admits with irony in the preface. In the publisher’s preface of a Swedish 1830 edition, the unnamed translator explains:

It is not this translator’s intention to expound on this novels aesthetic merits or faults – both almost tremendous by nature.

She then gives account for some obvious factual errors in the novel, explains why she has decided not to correct them, and concludes:

A genuine Genius addresses us and invites us to follow him; his path leads through dreary dungeons, over corpses, blocks, and his hero drinks human blood. Our hair stands on end, but so irresistible is this Genius’ invitation, that we must follow, though frightful and almost against our own will.

Han of Iceland was in essence a representation of Hugo’s love for Adèle, through the characters of Ethel and Ordener. English horror novels had clearly inspired it and some contemporary reviewers regarded it as an imitation of Walter Scott’s writings. But it had unquestionable literary merits and was a remarkable début for such a young writer. And as much as it caused disgust in some people, it generated admiration in others. It was translated into English over twenty times during the 19th century. The first Swedish translation appeared in 1830 (see above) and the first Norwegian in 1831.
You can find and download the novel at Google Books; at the Internet Archive (as Hans of Icelend) provided by the University of California Libraries, by the University of Michigan, by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign; and more.

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