“[She] was very eager for men and hated living alone”

Supernatural Women who Pose a Threat to Men in Icelandic Legends

in Ethnologia Europaea
Author:
Dagrún Ósk Jónsdóttir University of Iceland doj5@hi.is

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https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8341-3403

This article examines the ways in which various supernatural women who pose threats to men are presented in the Icelandic folk legend collections from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It focuses on narratives dealing with both female trolls and “hidden” women (elves) that appear to present a danger to male hegemony because of how they challenge the ruling ideology of the time with regard to femininity and sexuality. As the article demonstrates, in most cases, the legends show these threats being mitigated. The article therefore argues that these legends can be read as reinforcing the idea that women should not be tempted to violate hegemonic norms regarding femininity. 

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