Scandinavian Blue: The Erotic Cinema of Sweden and Denmark by Jack Stevenson

By Jack Stevenson

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Additional info for Scandinavian Blue: The Erotic Cinema of Sweden and Denmark in the 1960s and 1970s

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This tale of the sexual escapades of Ask Burlefot (Mykle's alter ego) during his student days in '30s Oslo would, like so many of the period's other controversial novels, later be made into a film. A year later a reprinting ofJohn Cleland's 200-year-old novel Fanny Hill was seized from Danish bookstores on court order. It was charged with "presenting such an offensive depiction of sexual congress that it must be considered obscene," marking the start of a case that would wind on for years. Publishers like Reitzel, Sch0nbergske and Morten A.

Swedish movies showed nudity in a way that seemed to promote a life philosophy, however casually conveyed, and they were thus far much bigger hits abroad. Danish films could break taboos. In 1957 26-year-old debut director Palle Kja::rulffSchmidt depicted homosexuals in Sin Alley. This was the tale of a 17-year-old lad from the provinces who comes to Copenhagen to seek a trade but is unable to secure an apprenticeship. Instead he is drawn into a life of crime, compelled to act as bait for a couple of street toughs who waylay, beat and rob homosexuals.

An oft-published still of the rape attempt that pictured Lotte Tarp's breasts exposed and her face hidden in a swirl of blonde hair was yet another scrap of damning evidence. The film was seen by some as a kind of status repon on Denmark's spiritual condition and the debate it sparked as a kind of group therapy. The pastor Claus Bang, speaking at a forum in the country's second largest city, Arhus, had his own take: "In my profession I've learned that you don't get very far giving advice when the patient asks for help in solving their personal conflicts.

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