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The Copenhagen Trilogy: Childhood; Youth;…
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The Copenhagen Trilogy: Childhood; Youth; Dependency (2021. Auflage)

von Tove Ditlevsen (Autor), Tiina Nunnally (Übersetzer), Michael Favala Goldman (Übersetzer)

MitgliederRezensionenBeliebtheitDurchschnittliche BewertungDiskussionen
1115196,298 (4.44)10
Titel:The Copenhagen Trilogy: Childhood; Youth; Dependency
Autoren:Tove Ditlevsen (Autor)
Weitere Autoren:Tiina Nunnally (Übersetzer), Michael Favala Goldman (Übersetzer)
Info:Farrar, Straus and Giroux (2021), 384 pages
Sammlungen:Deine Bibliothek


The Copenhagen Trilogy: Childhood; Youth; Dependency von Tove Ditlevsen

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great biography, very sad and modern at the same time ( )
  prima1 | Sep 25, 2021 |
A well known author in her native Denmark, Tove Ditlevsen has only become well known outside of Denmark in recent years as the trend in autofiction has developed.

A work of 3 novellas, in The Copenhagen Trilogy Ditlevsen writes with brutal candour about three key phases in her life. In Childhood we observe the child Ditlevsen in 1920s Copenhagen as the burgeoning writer within her struggles to identify with the narrow horizons of her working class neighbourhood of blue collared workers. As her poetry career begins to take off, in Youth we begin to see how an upbringing filled with insecurity about being loved has shaped the young adult Ditlevsen, as she tumbles into the security blanket of a bizarre chaste marriage to a short and overweight much older bachelor who publishes her first poem and whom she later quickly leaves without a backward glance when she meets a young student who sets her pulse racing.

Whilst Childhood didn't overly work for me (it read as an intelligised adult's observation of childhood rather than childhood seen through the eyes of a child), once the trilogy moved into Youth I was hooked. A classic stereotype of a tortured and deeply self-absorbed writer, Ditlevsen spares no punches in her depiction of herself as someone who is only truly happy when writing about life and relationships yet remains largely unsentimental and emotionally detached when it comes to her own love affairs. When, in Dependency, she reluctantly returns to a medical student she had a one-night stand with to abort the child she's unsure is his or her husband's, an utterly bizarre sequence of events marks the abrupt end of her second marriage and the beginning of a car crash marriage to a psychotic doctor who nurtures her addiction to prescription opiates, an addiction which plagues the rest of her adult life along with deeply depressive episodes (which no doubt contributed to her suicide at age 58).

Ditlevsen is her own worst enemy throughout her life, truly at the mercy of her erratic artistic temperament and need for self-gratification without care or interest in the consequences. I'd be highly surprised if her writing didn't influence a young Karl Ove Knausgaard, for this trilogy feels like the birthplace of nordic autofiction. Despite its setting in the 1930s and 40s, this work reads as fresh as if it had been written yesterday, as Ditlevsen conforms to the expectations of no one and follows only her own impetuous desires.

4.5 stars - After a disappointing first volume, this ended up a compelling page-turner which I was sad to reach the end of. ( )
  AlisonY | Sep 15, 2021 |
This is a memoir of a lovely Danish poet. In the three volumes, "Childhood", "Youth", and "Dependency", the author lays her life bare. It is the life of someone who started life as an exquisitely sensitive child, immediately labeled as "different". The reader becomes privy to her struggle to find time to grow up and to write. The emotionally impoverished home environment leaves its mark, as the author's coming of age leaves a mark on the reader. "Dependency" is devastating and hopeful. I am so impressed by the author's honesty. The writing is lovely, poignant, and completely engaging. Marvelous memoir! ( )
  hemlokgang | Aug 5, 2021 |
When I picked this up, I was worried that I wouldn't find it engaging but it was quite the opposite, I couldn't put it down! ( )
  viviennestrauss | Jun 19, 2021 |
"I read in my poetry album while the night wanders past the window---and, unawares, my childhood falls silently to the bottom of my memory, that library of the soul from which I will draw knowledge and experience for the rest of my life."

Tove Ditlevsen was one of Denmark's most well-known authors by the time of her death in 1976 by overdose at the age of 58. This trilogy is the memoir she wrote of her life and divided into three parts. And it's both devastating and beautiful. She grew up in the working class part of Copenhagen where there was never enough money for anything. She wrote her first poem at the age of ten and had her first poetry collection published when she was twenty, even though her parents wouldn't send her to high school.

She was brilliant, without question, and her writing in this memoir just knocked my socks off. Passage after beautiful passage until I thought I was underlining the whole book. At the end of the Childhood section, she realizes she is going to lose her best friend:

"Ruth with the fine, heart-shaped mouth and the strong, clear eyes. My little lost friend with the sharp tongue and the loving heart. Our friendship is over just as my childhood is. Now the last remnants fall away from me like flakes of sun-scorched skin, and beneath looms an awkward, an impossible adult."

The second section about her Youth, finds her floating from one job to another, trying to connect with anyone who could get her poetry published. She realizes she needs a room of her own where she can write in quiet solitude, interestingly, at about the same time that Virginia Woolf was saying the same thing.

The last section, Dependency, illustrates how one of her four husbands, manages to get her addicted to painkillers and the devastating effects on her life and children. And still, she manages to write.

This was an unforgettable memoir about an author I had never really heard of. She died way too young and probably would've gone on writing for many more years. Our loss. ( )
  brenzi | May 4, 2021 |
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