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Whiskey BreakfastMy Swedish Family, My American Life$
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Richard C. Lindberg

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780816646845

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816646845.001.0001

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A Worker of the World

A Worker of the World

(p.253) 17 A Worker of the World
Whiskey Breakfast

Richard C. Lindberg

University of Minnesota Press

In this chapter, the author, a first-generation Swedish American, reflects on the death of his father, Oscar Waldemar Lindberg. He remembers his Thursday afternoon custody visits with his father and how, as a young man, he silently condemned him for his distance and lack of affection. His decision to cast a vote for Ronald Reagan in the 1980 presidential election became a way for him to set free the long-suppressed rebellion inside him and spitefully refute his father’s admiration of the old left. It was the first (and last) act of supreme defiance he committed against his father’s set of half-baked convictions. Oscar died in July 1986, but he was cremated before the author and his half brother Charles could see him for one last time. The author talks about his father’s funeral in Swedetown in Chicago and says his stepmother Marie had no clue about Oscar’s secret world despite being married to him for sixteen years; his politics, his dual nature, or his miscreant early life.

Keywords:   death, Oscar Waldemar Lindberg, Chicago, Charles Lindberg, funeral, Swedetown, Marie Lindberg, politics

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