Alf Larsen

Poet, Award Winner

1885 – 1967

41

Who was Alf Larsen?

Alf Larsen was a Norwegian poet, essayist and magazine editor.

He made his literary debut in 1912 with the poetry collection Vinterlandet. He supported Rudolf Steiner's anthroposophy, and edited the magazine Janus from 1933 to 1941. He co-founded the publishing house Dreyers forlag in 1942. He was awarded the Gyldendal's Endowment in 1959.

Larsen himself considered his magazine Janus to be his most valuable contribution to Norwegian cultural life. There he presented what in hinsight stands out as a surprisingly clear-sighted criticism of nazi-Germany, and he also drew attention to the pre-nazistoid tendencies in the work of Norway's greatest writer, Knut Hamsun. Further he radically criticized other totalitarian ideologies of the time, stalinism and fascism, underscoring that they undermined the individuality and responsibility of man, as man is primarely to be understood as a spiritual being. And though Larsen considered himself a Christian, he strongly rejected the then widepread message of the so-called Oxford Group, most notably represented by the evangelist Frank Buchman, claiming that they represented a materialistic mentality.

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Born
1885
Nationality
  • Norway
Profession
Died
1967

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

Citation

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