A statement about Knut Hamsun

HUNGER is a story about a young man on the poverty line, struggling to make his way in an unfeeling city. It was first published as a novel in 1890, and had a notable influence on psychological literature.

The author of the novel, Knut Hamsun, held racist views and was sympathetic to fascist regimes. He made a gift of his Nobel Prize to the Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels and wrote a eulogy for Adolf Hitler.

Arcola Theatre, Jump Spark Theatre and the team behind this production condemn unequivocally the political views and actions of Knut Hamsun.

This new, stage adaptation of HUNGER was inspired by the story’s consideration of the vulnerable, and the physical, psychological and emotional tolls taken on a young person trying to make their way in the world. The production seeks, on its own terms and in a different form and time, to explore that hardship with compassion and humanity.

We acknowledge that the relationship between artworks and their original creators is a complex and contentious subject. We invite everyone to engage with this adaptation of HUNGER in full knowledge of the views and actions of the source material’s author, Knut Hamsun.