From A to Z, guided tour by Strindberg.

Marie Lundquist, author:

“Because the small and niggling letters lay there dead, unable to freely and instantly expose himself.” August has to be joking! What has caused him to express himself as if he doubted the wonderful world of letters? He who seems to be made entirely of letters, created by the alphabet itself. He who always breaths words, bleeds them, spits them out, digests them in his stomach and bowels in order to evacuate them, stinking and execrable, the normal way. Or sweet and tasty like raspberry jellies the oral way. Letters don’t even have to turn into words to create meaning. On a whitewashed wall in France, he saw a sign with the interlaced letters F and S, which he interpreted as the initials of his runaway wife’s name. Ergo, she still cared for him! A moment later he is struck by the fact that the letters also stand for the chemical symbols for iron (fer) and sulphur (soufre). In front of his eyes is thus the secret of gold! A man who harbours such faith in the living power of single letters can surely not suffer from writer’s block!

A good text evokes images. It is precisely this kind of drama that August writes. His plays do not only contain that which is heard from the mouths of the actors, lines and exchanges, they also contain silent stage directions which paint settings and objects in front of the viewers’ eyes.
In “The Room of the Small and Niggling Letters”, which is entirely devoted to writing, it is just the words that create the images. Just lift the papers on the floor and hold them up against the light. And see! Another magic trick by the hand of the Master. Suddenly we become aware of a sunray, an ice- box and the throne of the Queen of the Ball...


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