Hans Christian Andersen: Overview

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Editor: Lesley Henderson
Date: 1995
Publisher: Gale
Document Type: Critical essay
Length: 446 words

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The fame of Hans Christian Andersen—H.C. Andersen to his fellow countrymen and Hans Andersen to countless readers outside Denmark—is founded on paradox. Although he was—and is—a very distinctly Danish author, he was anything but parochial. Well-read, well-informed about the cultural and scientific developments of his time, and well-travelled—some of Andersen's travel-books still deserve attention, e.g., En digters bazar (A Poet's Bazaar)—he made a name for himself both in his own country and internationally as a novelist during his own lifetime. And yet, as the physicist H.C. Ørsted told a sceptical Andersen, if his novels made him famous, his fairy-tales would make him immortal.

Andersen's first love was the theatre,...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|H1420000218