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CLS 85 — Northern Crimes: Scandinavian Murder Mysteries in Literature and Film

Quarter: Summer
Day(s): Tuesdays
Course Format: On-campus
Duration: 8 weeks
Date(s): Jun 26—Aug 14
Time: 6:30—9:00 pm
Drop Deadline: Jul 9
Unit: 1
Tuition: $395
Instructor(s): Beverly Allen
6:30—9:00 pm
Jun 26—Aug 14
8 weeks
Drop By
Jul 9
1 Unit
Beverly Allen
Murder most frozen! Scandinavian crime fiction has been sweeping down from the north since the 1970s. Readers and viewers of film and television worldwide are familiar with Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and its unforgettable protagonist, Lisbeth Salander. Many also feel a kinship with the endearing, aging detective Kurt Wallander, created by Henning Mankell (whose father-in-law, Ingmar Bergman, had a say in the film versions of those books). Often marvelously entertaining, these well-crafted works also provide a window into some of the most important global issues of our time. They take a cold, hard look at corruption, human trafficking, terrorism, misogyny, and climate change.

This entirely new course provides a multimedia introduction to Scandinavian crime fiction. Together we will read classics from this gripping genre, including The Terrorists (Maj Sjöwall and Per Wallöö), Before the Frost (Mankell), The Preacher (Camilla Läckberg), and The Thirst (Jo Nesbø). And we will watch crime fiction stories made for television, where some of the best writing is now found—The Eagle, Rebecka Martinsson, Missing, and The Team. Don’t worry if you don’t recognize all of these titles and authors—or if you can’t pronounce the Scandinavian names. An appetite for a good adventure is all that is needed.

Beverly Allen, Visiting Professor of Comparative Literature

Beverly Allen has taught at Cornell, UC Santa Cruz, and the University of Zagreb. She held the William P. Tolley Distinguished Teaching Professorship in the Humanities at Syracuse University. She received a PhD from UC Berkeley. Allen has lived in Sweden and Norway and has been studying Nordic literature for over a decade.

Textbooks for this course:

All of the assigned TV Series are available on MHz/Choice. The website has a one-month-free offer; the subscription is $7.99/month. Website: http://watch.mhzchoice.com/

(Required) Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö, The Terrorists (ISBN 978-03-07390882)
(Required) Henning Mankell, Before the Frost (ISBN 978-1400095810)
(Required) Camilla Läckberg , The Preacher (ISBN 978-1451621778)
(Required) Jo Nesbo, The Thirst (ISBN 978-0804170222)
(Required Viewing), Rebecka Martinsson (TV Series)
(Required Viewing), The Team (TV Series)
(Required Viewing), Missing (TV Series)
(Required Viewing), Death of A Pilgrim (TV Series)