Karen Blixen Biography | Author of Babette's Feast

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Karen Blixen (also known as Isak Dinesen) was born Karen Christentze Dinesen on April 17, 1885, near Copenhagen, Denmark. Her father was loosely related to royalty, and her mother was the daughter of a successful shipowner. When Dinesen was ten, her father committed suicide. This was devastating to Dinesen, who had shared a close relationship with her father.

Literature played a prominent role in Dinesen's family; her grandfather had been friends with the fairy tale author Hans Christian Andersen, and her father, brother, a sister, and an aunt were all writers. When Dinesen was twenty-two, several of her short stories were published in literary journals.

On January 14, 1914, Dinesen married her second cousin, Bror von Blixen-Finecke, a baron's son. With the emotional and financial support of their family, the couple bought 700 acres of land in East Africa and began cultivating it for coffee beans. Within the year, however, Dinesen discovered that...

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This section contains 425 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Babette's Feast Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
Babette's Feast from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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