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by Jens Peter Jacobsen, Trans. By Hanna Astrup Larsen
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According to JOHAN DE MYLIUS of the Danish Royal Library, Jens Peter Jacobsen was a "poet associated with the so-called 'modern breakthrough' in Danish literature in the 1870s. . . . Jacobsen's immediate importance was his status as the 'writer of his generation.' Jacobsen's breakthrough came already in 1876 with the historical and psychological novel Fru Marie Grubbe," entitled Marie Grubbe in English, "which for the first time in Danish literature presented a profound portrayal of a woman as a creature of instinct and desire and as a being searching for her own identity. The book's defiant individualism asserting human values as opposed to society's judgment was also a sign of modernity."
Text: English, Danish (translation)
Sometimes when she stood at the open window leaning against the casement and looking down into the paved court below, she would feel an overmastering impulse to throw herself down, merely to do it. But in that very second she seemed to have actually made the leap in her imagination and to have felt the cool, incisive tingling that accompanies a jump from a height. She darted back from the window to the inmost corner of the room, shaking with horror, the image of herself lying in her own blood on the hard stones so vivid in her mind that she had to go back to the window again and look down in order to drive it away.
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