Identity, Ideology and Textual Production in Late Medieval Iceland

Project manager
Jóhanna Katrín Friðriksdóttir, Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies

The objectives of this project are to add to knowledge about the literature, culture and textual production of late medieval Iceland, and to produce an overview of the period’s literature and the ideological discourses that took place in literary texts. Studying the late medieval period’s literary output across genre boundaries, including lesser-studied texts such as ballads, bishops’ sagas and annals as well as Sagas of Icelanders, legendary sagas and romances, will yield a more integrated, multivalent and nuanced image of late medieval Iceland, its ideology and its relationship with Europe. Framing texts even wider with textual production, i.e. in their contemporary historical context and their physical vessel, the manuscript, adds more information, e.g. regarding date and locality, to an already rich image that the sources will compose. The goal with the project is to set out a new understanding of late medieval identities and ideologies in relation to the outside world as they are constructed and represented in literary texts. Applying (post)colonial and other appropriate theoretical frameworks to the sources will help to tease out the ways in which literature reflected and possibly shaped ideology and identity on many levels in late medieval Iceland.

This project has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) as part of the Marie Curie Research Fellowship Programme.