Updated: Mar 23
All folklore is distinguished by its motifs, whether they be big bad wolves or trolls or vengeful ghosts. But there is one motif that can only be found in Icelandic folklore.
Would you like to know what it is?
Then you should mark your calendar for Iceland’s Unique Folklore, a public webinar offered by Icelandic Roots on March 28 at 1 p.m. Eastern Time. The online session will run for one hour. The link to join is on the IR Event Calendar HERE.
Writer and journalist, Alda Sigmundsdóttir, has promised to tell her listeners what that uniquely Icelandic folklore motif is.
Alda is well-known internationally as the author of books such as Living Inside the Meltdown, The Little Book of Icelanders, The Little Book of the Icelanders in the Old Days, and The Little Book of the Hidden People, among others. The Little Book series is a light and entertaining look at Icelandic life and culture while Living Inside the Meltdown is a collection of interviews with ordinary people about their experiences during Iceland's economic meltdown in 2008.
Born in Iceland and raised in Canada, Alda returned to Iceland as an adult. In 2004 she started a blog, The Iceland Weather Report, which she describes as an integration of her two sides: the insider who speaks the language and the outsider who was socialized in North America.
In 2011 she returned to school to complete a degree in English with a minor in Ethnology/Folkloristics. And that began a love affair with Icelandic folklore, past and present.
She wrote the introduction to “Icelandic Folk Legends: Tales of Apparitions, Outlaws and Things Unseen,” a collection of fifteen tales representative of the Icelandic genre, which has garnered solid reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.
“I will be talking a bit about how Icelanders lived in the old days and how storytelling and the transmission of folklore were integral to their lives and spiritual survival,” she says.
“I’d also like to focus in particular on the Hidden People or Elf belief and what it tells us about the lives of Icelanders in the past from a modern-day perspective and what we know today about psychology and the trauma response.”
She will touch on the motifs in folk tales and how they were transmitted around the world, with different tales taking on the characteristics of the places where they landed.
And yes, she will reveal that motif that can only be found in Icelandic folklore.
It promises to be an hour that Icelandic Roots members will not want to miss.