Nordic World Literature
To what extent has Nordic literature contributed to world literature and in what way has this literary export shaped the world's view of the Nordic countries?
Reception theory is a central element in modern literary studies. Literary scholars, in Sweden and other countries, have often studied how foreign literature has affected native literature. The opposite perspective has, naturally, not been as commonly practiced. In this project, three researchers connected to the Centre for Scandinavian Studies Copenhagen-Lund (CSS) – Professor Rikard Schönström (RS) and Asssociate Professors Anders Mortensen (AM) and Robert Zola Christensen (RZC) – in close collaboration with several prominent foreign Scandinavian scholars, will explore the spread and reception of Nordic literature in other parts of the world.
Our concern is not chiefly in mapping the vast number of Nordic literary texts in translation but in discovering to what extent and in which ways Nordic literature has had a deeper literary, cultural and social impact abroad. We will therefore conduct quantitative research of translated Nordic literature mainly in order to create a basis for the qualitatively focused analyses of specific periods of literary history or literary tendencies, including particularly successful authorships and striking literary themes. Such research will collectively provide a broad understanding of the legacy and influence of Nordic literature internationally.