Carl Olsen got his PhD in Scandinavian Studies at UC Berkeley in 2009. His dissertation was on viking poems about pictures of myths on shields, which is pretty much the most awesome dissertation topic ever. He continued as a lecturer at UC Berkeley until Summer 2012 and most recently taught as a Visiting Professor in the Scandinavian Department at Gustavus Adolphus College in St Peter, MN. In addition to teaching and researching, he writes poetry, draws stuff, and blogs about Vikings, Scandinavian Studies, science fiction and fantasy, and lots of other stuff at Vikings, Books, etc. You can find links to his poetry on his blog, and you can find his art both on his blog and on deviantART.
In this interview we talk about how Carl became a Doctor of Viking Studies, his art and research on the Norse sagas, and why Norse culture is more complicated than you might think.