Arctic Pain! – Talk with author Jessie Kleeman

Arctic Pain!
West Nordic Day 2022

In the occasion of West Nordic Day 2022, we have invited artist Jessie Kleemann to participate as a part of the afternoon’s celebrations. Jessie Kleeman in the Nordic House, moderated by Sofie Hermansen Eriksdatter, Head of the Secretariat of Nordic Council Literature Prizes, Nordic House. 

Arkhticós Dolorôs

The poem collection Arkhticós Dolorôs (2021) is about arctic pain, the experience of the colonized, Greenland’s unique geo-political situation and global warming. It is definitely harsh themes but a wild and playful humour is simultaneously bubbling in-between the texts’ melting ice blocks.

In the poem collection, topics are admirably compiled which in the last quarter of a century has occupied Kleemann: the modern human’s abuse of nature, the loss of the original people’s culture and the fight lying ahead, where the descendants of the Greenlandic Innuits have to find a new identity in a modern, globalized present.

Jessie Kleemann was among one of the first to reinterpret the myth about the Ocean’s Mother as a modern symbol for pollution and environmental disaster. In Arkhticós Dolorôs, the figure is duplicated in the shape of a “cold creature”, the ice and glaciers inua, soul or creature, whose pain gruesomely backlashes at humankind. Kleemann thus shares from an original people’s experiences with humans’ completely fundamental interdependence on nature, which they themselves are a part of – interpreted in a late modern, globalized present. Therefore, her texts resonate with multiple people and have a great Nordic and international potential.

Jessie Kleemann is born in 1959 in Upernavik, Northern Greenland. Arkhticós Dolorôs is nominated for Nordic Council Literature Prize this year.