The Mormor Monologues
February 9, 2014
In Norwegian, the word “mormor” means grandmother. The stereotype is of an acquiescent Scandinavian female who enjoys quiet passivity, who gives advice to the children and grandchildren gently, and takes her place in the back seat of life without question.
However, a new project called The Mormor Monologues has set out to “challenge the idea and cultural construction of the old woman.”
Elyse Schmidt recently spotlighted this collection of oral histories from mormors on her blog and provides a link to the project itself, which was created by a young woman named Karoline Hjorth. (There’s also a link to the project below.)
Karoline is a photographer/journalist and is half of the team behind the mind-blowing art installation, Eyes as Big as Plates. The other artist/creator of that project is Ritta Ikonen.
In The Mormor Monologues, Karoline uses videos (with subtitles) of women elders giving short oral histories. To read an interview with Karoline Hjorth learn more about why she’s doing this work, visit Senior Planet.
For a look at the mormor videos and other aspects of the project, visit The Mormor Monologues. I recommend clicking on one name at a time at the bottom of the home page and not going to the Gallery which, while beautifully made, takes an awfully long time to load, at least it does on this computer out here in the sticks with the interference of wild geese overhead and cables traveling underneath the river, etc. You might have better luck than I.
I appreciate the fact that Karoline Hjorth wants to use art and video to relocate these women to a place of esteem. I haven’t watched all of the videos yet, but this is my favorite one so far.
Many thanks to Elyse Schmidt, a lovely woman over at My Silver Age, for her blog post that led me to this interesting collection of oral histories.