Hvis Der Var Krig I Norden (War - what if it were here?)
Winner of the Peter Pan Prize, Silverstar, Sweden 2013
Winner of the Teskedsordnen (anti-fanaticism prize), Sweden 2012
Imagine if war broke out – not in Iraq or Afghanistan, somewhere far, far away, but here, in your home country. In War, Janne Teller embarks on a thought-provoking experiment: by simply turning the current crisis on its head, she reveals what it is like to be a refugee – what it is like to flee your home, to be exiled, and to fight for survival in a foreign country.
In this illustrated fictional essay/ short story, Europe has fallen apart and the only place at peace within reach is the Middle East. You follow a normal European family as they flee to Egypt and see what they go through as refugees, through the eyes of their fourteen-year-old son.
Praise for War
‘Finally, a necessary book!’ – Le Monde (France)
‘The situation of refugees is narrated very, very realistically and completedly matter-of-factly – not just seen from the eyes of the refugee, but also with recognizable and thus inescapable details from the Danish quotidian life. Seldom have you seen such a quiet yet so shocking description of life as a refugee … A brief thought provoking master piece, which you cannot help but be taken by.’ – Bibliotekernes lektørudtalelse (Denmark)
‘Beneath the elegant passport cover…Janne Teller’s book reveals what, for millions of people, is a daily nightmare: flight, exile, the struggle to survive… Let us hope that this vitriolic fable will one day be adapted for the big screen, in the manner of Iranian author Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis.’ – Olivier Verdun, La Cause Littéraire (France)
‘This essay is highly relevant and raises the question of how we see the world, along with our attitude towards others and towards ourselves. For it seems that we no longer worry about the fate of mankind. We are only concerned by what affects us directly: when war breaks out in our own streets and threatens our daily lives, our ‘unshakeable’ existence. We forget all too often that nothing is set in stone and that everything could change from one day to the next. And if it happened to us? This is a book with real clout.’ – Toute La Culture, ***** (France)
‘A little passport book for a journey that is in no way escapist, and yet, a journey of the imagination. And it is not so far removed from the reality that invades our daily lives in the form of pictures from Gaza, from Syria, from the forgotten conflicts in Africa and the many parts of the world that are filled with refugees, and victims – who for the most part are innocent civilians. Janne Teller’s idea is a daring one, which forces us to have empathy, and to alter adopt the perspective of the other, beyond all preconceptions so-called stereotypes.’ – Il Mattino (Italy)
‘In a world where we spend money on so many superfluous things, we should all by a copy of this truly powerful little gem of a book.’ – Il Caffè Geopolitico (Italy)
‘This little book takes the form of a passport and in a few pages conveys all the horror of war, of exile and marginalisation; what it means to survive in a faraway and foreign land.’ – Huffington Post (Italy)
‘A much-needed work of oppressive realism which, as is the case with [Janne Teller’s novel] NOTHING, sets out to move us deeply and to exploit our conscience, creating a shockwave that eats away at you, inside and out, for days.’ – Alfredo Llopico, El Mundo (Spain)
‘Janne Teller builds her words upon the two great forgotten European – “even Christian” – values: “All human beings are born equal” and “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”.’ – El Español (Spain)