The Family Sagas are a wonderfully complex collection of legendary literature written by Icelanders in the Middle Ages about their own Viking-Age ancestors. One of the reasons that they are so wonderfully (or woefully) complex is that they are so far removed–temporally, culturally, and geographically–from our world as Americans today. This doesn’t mean that these stories offer no lessons for today, but one is quickly confronted by the plethora of people and places named Thor-this or Thor-that, and it’s easy to get lost in the confusion and miss the forest for the trees. That’s why I’ve translated Hrafnkels saga for publication as an interactive ebook and map. The goal is to give today’s readers the right resources to make the story come alive for them as it did for the medieval audience. The eSaga of Hrafnkell Freysgoði is now available on the iTunes store.
For my Master’s, I studied the political geography of Viking-Age Iceland and examined the relationship between power and travel by reconstructing the network of trails around Mosfell. I did this research as a part of the Mosfell Archaeological Project. We recently published a book on the team’s fieldwork and research, and you can find my contributions HERE and HERE. I am currently continuing my research by examining the ways in which landscape is related to memory and narrative in the sagas of the East Fjords.