Taste of Iceland

Almost a decade ago now, I applied for grants to go to Iceland for my PhD research. I was awarded grants from both the U.S. State department Fulbright program, and an American Scandinavian Foundation fellowship. I would not have been able to accept Icelandic citizenship under the Fullbright, so I turned it down. Jon Baldvin Hannibalsson, who was Ambassador to Iceland when I worked at the Smithsonian, is fond of introducing me to people today as the only person he knows to have turned down a Fullbright. But obviously it was more important to me to have Icelandic citizenship than it was to have a Fullbright. I didn't reflect on it much at the time, but I can psychoanalyze it now to say ego was more tied to satisfying my identity as an Icelander than to satisfying my identity as prestigious scholar.

The job I have now is likely a continuation, and a reflection, of that choice. And although sometimes I regret not having the sort of pure academic position that leaves me time to write the next great treatise on the Viking Age, it does give me opportunity to reiterate my Icelandicness.

For instance, I'm excited to be a part of Taste of Iceland this October in Seattle. I put together two exhibitions with an Icelandic spin for the occasion, and I am looking forward to being officially part of an Icelandic Consular initiative. The website will be up soon, so I'll add in a link here when that happens.

And speaking of Taste of Iceland, I note that Siggis Skyr is now available at the Safeway in Moraga, CA. Which means Palmer can have it for breakfast on a regular basis.


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