Recent News

New Ph.D. in Scandinavian Studies, Maren Anderson Johnson Maren Anderson Johnson successfully defended her Ph.D. dissertation “Staging Genius: Henrik Ibsen and Biographical Theater” on  May 29th, 2014. The dissertation argues that recent Norwegian dramas by Robert Ferguson, Jon Fosse, and Niels Fredrik Dahl have shifted the discussion around Ibsen’s authorship and altered perceptions of Ibsen’s status as a genius. The plays stress the ways in which women played a necessary, complicated, and overlooked role in Ibsen’s writing process, challenging the stereotype of the... Read more
Barbro Osher Endowed Swedish Professor Ann-Charlotte (Lotta) Gavel Adams The academic year 2013-14 had several highlights in addition to my regular teaching of the Advanced Swedish 300-series, the seminar-style Scandinavian Women Writers course, and the large enrollment (120 student strong) Scandinavian Children’s Literature course. This latter course is growing both in student enrollment and in library holdings. The Suzzallo Library got a donation from the Jane Isaksson Lea Foundation of $2,000 to add to the library’s stock of Swedish children’s books, money which... Read more
Marianne Stecher
It's not often that a literary study makes front page news! On September 2nd, Denmark's largest daily newspaper POLITIKEN published a front-page story on Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen), reporting that an important new study by UW Professor of Scandinavian Studies Marianne Stecher had challenged decades of criticism about the Danish literary icon, whose  literary works about colonial Africa have often provoked controversy and elicited praise. Critic Mikkel Bruun Zangenberg gave high marks (five-hearts) to The Creative Dialectic in Karen Blixen's Essays, calling it a "smashing good study... Read more
The Department is seeking candidates to fill a tenure-track appointment in the area of Norwegian language, literature, and culture. Please see the Academic Human Resources website for the full job announcement.
Photo of Anna Rühl
2014-2015 Kielland-Løvdall Fellowship Awarded to Anna Rühl Anna Rühl, a doctoral student in Norwegian Studies, has been awarded the 2014-2015 Ruth Kielland - Leif and Sophie Løvdal Fellowship.The fellowship will allow Anna to spend an academic year at the University of Bergen, Norway, where professor Pål Bjørby has graciously agreed to host her and help supervise her dissertation project entitled 'Imot naturen?' - Images of 'nature' in contemporary Norwegian life-writing. In her dissertation, Anna aims to examine the ways in which different traditions of... Read more
On October 8th, Kirstine Kastbjerg successfully completed the defense of her doctoral dissertation, “Reading the Surface: The Danish Gothic of B.S. Ingemann, H.C. Andersen, Karen Blixen and Beyond.” Supervised by Professor Marianne Stecher, the dissertation examines the negotiation of Gothic tropes by Danish authors with a particular emphasis on the excessive foregrounding of surfaces in the Gothic. Relying on excess, spectacle, hyperbole, clichéd conventions, stylistic ornamentation and histrionic performances for its effect, the Gothic counter-narrative questions not only good taste, but... Read more
The Barbro Osher ProSuecia Foundation has upgraded the Barbro Osher Endowed Professorship in Swedish Studies to an Endowed Chair in Swedish Studies with a most generous donation now totaling $1,000,000. A native of Stockholm, Sweden, Barbro Osher graduated from Stockholm University with a degree in languages and political science. Osher is deeply concerned that Scandinavian Studies Departments are loosing ground at American universities. She feels that Scandinavia stands for social awareness and responsibility towards others both locally and globally. The Nordic countries - despite their... Read more
Ralitsa Lazarova defended her dissertation “True stories: The Politics of Emotion in Works of Performative Realism in Recent Swedish Fiction," on May 28, 2014. Lazarova’s dissertation analyzed works of contemporary Swedish fiction by authors Per Olov Enquist, Sara Stridsberg, and Jonas Hassen Khemiri, which make prominent use of the aesthetic strategies of performative realism. These works focus thematically on extreme and marginalized figures such as the monster, the hysteric, the angry feminist, the murderous mother, and the international terrorist. Lazarova’s analysis demonstrated that... Read more
The main dining hall at the University of Washington Club filled up with over 150 guests!
At it's annual Graduation Reception, the Department of Scandinavian Studies honored 4 graduating PhD's, 1 MA, 16 Bachelors of Arts, 28 minors. Over $20,000 in scholarships were also honored to 23 students. Thank you to all the students, faculty, advisory board members, donors, staff, family and friends that were able to attend! Several Graduation Photos were posted on Facebook at For a... Read more
Looking for courses for the Summer quarter? Here is what our faculty is teaching in the upcoming quarter.A Term CoursesSCAND 100: Introduction To Scandinavian Culture  -  Jan Sjåvik MTWThF 11:30-13:40 SIG 229SCAND 326: Scandinavia In World Affairs  -  Christine Ingebritsen MTWThF 09:10-11:20 SIG 226 B Term CoursesSCAND 230: Introduction To Folklore Studies  -  Guntis Šmidchens MWF (time and room tbd)JSIS 301: Europe Today  -  Christine Ingebritsen MTWThF 1:10-3:20 THO 202