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Ármann Jakobsson (18 July 1970–) is an Icelandic author and scholar.
The Troll Inside You: Paranormal Activity in the Medieval North (2017)
- Witches, ghouls, possessed animals, even nebulous mountain-dwelling ogres, are neither discrete species of the otherwordly nor even are they ﬁrmly separable from humanity. They are, in a sense, all or any of us, which means, of course, that we are also, in a sense, them. These two states of being, human and troll, are separated only by magic and the passage of time, the former a somewhat obvious but the latter a no less essential element in the cultural myth of the troll.
- Why do we see dead people? What function can a troll on a mountain ridge possibly serve? There is no easy answer to such questions, they are impenetrable dilemmas, but possibly anyone who has woken up with a strong feeling of an intruder in the house can attempt to claw at an answer. We all learn soon enough that bad things happen, experiences so horrible that even the scientiﬁc mind ﬁnds it hard to normalise them. Traumatic experiences are never only of the moment but are internalised and stay with us as an expectation of more and perhaps greater horror to come, perhaps culminating in the dread feeling that one is perhaps, or even unavoidably, unlucky. Having once experienced one’s fears will inevitably lead to an expectation, a dread, of more to come; thus trauma can easily be channeled through the troll, our enemy, that potent force al-ways working against us. There is no need for an organized religion of the troll since it springs naturally from any and all dismal experiences. The troll feeds, is nourished, on our fears. If men were in control, they would have no need for magic. Without traumatic experiences, there would be no trolls. If we did not all die, the undead would not pervade our culture.