Monday, 17 June 2013
Time Out With Beowulf
The text of Heaney's translation is straightforward and transparent, like a modern novel, something to be read by fans of Poul Anderson. Beowulf is a minor character in Anderson's retelling of Hrolf Kraki's Saga, just as the historical Macbeth is mentioned in his Last Viking Trilogy, which is about the historical Harald Hardrada.
In the twentieth century, fantasy and science fiction became literary ghettos. It is good to be reminded that Poul Anderson's works are integral to the European literary tradition, English-speaking North Americans being an extension of that tradition.