Review: Myths of the Rune Stone and Imagined Medieval History

1954 - Immortal Rock book jacket

The novel Immortal Rock, published in 1954, tells an imaginative story of Norsemen traveling to what is now Minnesota in 1362.

A new review of Myths of the Rune Stone: Viking Martyrs and the Birthplace of America came out in July 2016. View the complete book review at H-Net/H-Skand here. Reviewer Adam J. Oberlin brought up an interesting perspective I had not considered before:

“Krueger’s analysis of the civic, religious, and political life of the Kensington Stone and its supporters through almost a century of American history is indeed a study in medievalism, even if it is an imagined medieval history and not the appropriation of authentic events, peoples, and monuments.”

Besides the research I have done for this book, I have not looked into other examples of how Americans have appropriated medieval history to address contemporary issues of identity. However, I suspect this book would be useful in making comparisons.

The review also notes how the book would be “useful in the classroom as a coda to the ever-popular course on Viking history or mythology.” I think that is a great idea!

 

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