A. S. Byatt: Ragnarok: The End of the Gods

(2370 words)

In 2011 Byatt published a novella, Ragnarok, with Canongate (Edinburgh), as part of that publisher’s “Myths” series, of which the best-known and most commercially successful example hitherto is Philip Pullman’s The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ (2010).

Ragnarok: The End of the Gods is set in the Blitz of WW2 (1940-42, and intermittently on until the V1 and V2 attacks in spring 1945) and its aftermath fifty years later. It was inspired, as the dedication testifies, by the gift to her from Byatt’s mother (Marie Drabble, néé Bloor) of Asgard and the Gods, an 1880 translation and adaptation of the early nineteenth-century German compilation by the mythographer Dr W[…

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Todd, Richard. "Ragnarok: The End of the Gods". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 July 2011
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=33483, accessed 28 September 2016.]