Maren Uthaug

Maren Uthaug is a Norwegian, Sami and Danish author, cartoonist, and blogger. She has been a regular columnist in the newspaper Politiken for several years with the comic strip Ting jeg gjorde. In 2022, Uthaug received Denmark's prestigious bookseller award De Gyldne Laubær for her novel 11%.

Maren Uthaug was born in Kautokeino, Norway. She moved to Denmark in 1980, at the age of seven, and settled in Copenhagen.

Uthaug's literary debut occurred in 2013 with the novel "Sådan blev det" ("Og sådan blev det" in Danish). While not autobiographical, the novel mirrors her own experiences as a seven-year-old Sami girl moving to Denmark. The protagonist, Risten, navigates the challenges of adapting to a new culture, graced with Uthaug's signature dark humour that humanizes difficult situations. The novel spans different epochs, offering a poignant portrayal of Risten/Kirsten's life from 1974 to around 2007, intertwining her Sami roots throughout.

In 2017, Uthaug unveiled "Hvor der er fugle" ("Der det finst fuglar" in Nynorsk), a novel set against the backdrop of the Trøndelag coast and the area around Uthaug and Ørlandet. Exploring themes of longing, alienation, deception, friendship, money, and power, the novel delves into the complexities of human choices. It focuses on the impossible love at the heart of the narrative, embodied by central characters Hannah and Johan, offering a brutal yet beautiful depiction of societal constraints and the pursuit of happiness.

In 2018, she received the DR Romanprisen for "Hvor der er fugle".

The narrative prowess of Uthaug extends to her 2019 work, "En lykkelig slutning", a family saga tracing several generations of undertakers. Nicolas, the main character, takes on the role of storyteller, guiding the reader through the family's history from the early 1800s to the 2000s. Uthaug explores the centrality of names, dysfunctional traits, and destinies that seem to pass down through generations, weaving a tapestry that encompasses death, rituals, and human warmth.

Uthaug entered the world of comics in 2010 with "Det er gøy å være same," a satirical collection depicting Sami culture. Her comic strips, including "Ting jeg gjorde" in Politiken, have garnered popularity and have been compiled into books like "Parforhold" (2020) and "Kærlighed" (2020). Her humour and observations resonate with Danish audiences and beyond, adding a unique dimension to her body of work.

In 2022, Uthaug unveiled her latest novel, "11%", a compelling exploration of a dystopian society where men are confined for being deemed too dangerous. The narrative revolves around Medea, a skilled snake breeder, and introduces readers to a world where love between women is not without complications.

The novel, marked by Uthaug's satirical touch, underscores human resilience and the intricate interplay between societal norms and individual agency.

Photo credit: IG @maren_uthaug
роки життя: 1972 теперішній час


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