With the Lapps in the High Mountains: A Woman among the Sámi, 1907–1908

Tim Frandy
2014 Scandinavian Studies  
additional points from the extensive recent scholarship on interpreting letters of migration by Fitzpatrick, Gerber, Helbich and Kamphoefner, Sinke, Elliott, Erickson, and Attebery. The book's bibliography is also limited-to a Norwegian-only focus. The value of the translated letters can hardly be overstated. Even in letters written with a public audience in mind, we have access to the writers' thoughts and a sense of their voices. Bracketed by formulaic greetings and well-wishing are
more » ... ns of the sea passage and train travel, advice for those thinking about immigration, comments on European and American politics, calculations of American economics, religious sentiments and arguments, descriptions of the landscape and its resources, comments on the healthfulness of the American environment, and news of deaths and births. Chief among the themes emphasized is the difficult decision on whether to emigrate from Norway, weighed by the correspondents for both economic and emotional consequences. The translated letters remind us that writing of all genres and literacy levels can communicate movingly even to an unintended audience remote in time and place. Notes by the editor provide much-needed context, where available. The volume would have been enhanced by providing images of a couple of letters to reinforce for readers that the originals are chirographic texts, for which the artifactual and aesthetic qualities of handwriting and paper also communicate. The From America to Norway series is highly recommended for university and college libraries, especially those at institutions with programs focused on American ethnicity, Scandinavian studies, or vernacular culture. The series will also interest patrons at public libraries in regions with a strong Norwegian heritage.
doi:10.5406/scanstud.86.2.0229 fatcat:nndoqfkoqbgi7arsd7jo3euw5m