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Douglas Biow, Director MEZ 3.126, Mailcode A1800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-232-3470

Fall 2008

EUS 347 • Astrid Lundgren-W

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
36665 MWF
11:00 AM-12:00 PM
EPS 4.102A
Staubhaar, S

Course Description

Astrid Lindgren (1907 - 2002), chosen in 1999 as "Swede of the Century" by readers of the Stockholm newspaper Aftonbladet, wrote nearly one hundred books, including novels for children and adolescents; picture books; fairy tales; and autobiographical material. Portions of her work have been translated into 76 languages, making her one of the world's most-translated authors. A number of her works have been filmed. Nine of her novels were selected for the Top Hundred Swedish Books of the Twentieth Century; five of them were in the top ten.

Two honors Lindgren never received, but which grass-roots readers enthusiastically continued to promote for her, are: Membership in the Swedish Academy; and recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature. The purpose of this class is to acquaint you with samples of Lindgren's work, particularly those pieces not as well known in the U.S. (Lindgrens range, as a writer, goes considerably beyond Pippi Longstocking.) Readings will be used as catalysts for the production of: research or reaction papers (see below); in-class writing exercises; class presentations; and discussions on various issues which will come up. Some of these may include: Does Lindgren have an agenda, or a message (even though she insists she doesn't), and if so, what is it? How does Lindgren reflect twentieth-century Sweden? How do we distinguish "children's literature" from literature as a whole - or do we (the Harry Potter question)? Is Lindgren a feminist? Is Pippi Longstocking a capitalist pig, as one of the members of the commune in Lukas Moodysson's 2000 film Tilsammans insists? Is Lindgren at fault for rudeness in children as she has sometimes been accused? Why are so many of Lindgren's characters abused loners? Are Lindgren's works Good for Society, taken as a whole? (Does Lindgren reflect an antiquated colonial disdain towards non-Europeans, for instance?) Do Lindgren's novels translate well to film? or any other issue that may occur to any of us.

Grading Policy

5 writing projects, minimum of 6 pp each (2 in-class, 3 out of class) 90 % (1 of the out-of class papers may be substantially revised) Class discussions and participation 10%


Pippi Longstocking, by Astrid Lindgren. Puffin, 1997. ISBN 0140309578 The Children of Noisy Village, by Astrid Lindgren. Viking, 1988. ISBN 014032609X Bill Bergström, Master Detective, by Astrid Lindgren. Emil in Soup, by Astrid Lindgren. Viking, 1999. ISBN 0140341218 Emil's Pranks, by Astrid Lindgren. Viking, 1999. ISBN 0140341226 Mio, My Son, by Astrid Lindgren. The Brothers Lionheart, by Astrid Lindgren. Ronia, The Robbers Daughter, by Astrid Lindgren. Viking, 1985. ISBN 0140317201 Brenda the Brave, by Astrid Lindgren.


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