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Eva Borgström


Department of Literature, History of Ideas, and
Visiting address
Renströmsgatan 6
41255 Göteborg
Room number
Postal address
Box 200
40530 Göteborg

About Eva Borgström

Eva Borgström is professor at the Department of Literature, History of Ideas, and Religion since January 1, 2010. Previously she served as Research Officer at the National Secretariat for Gender Research and editor for the Nordic Journal of Women's Studies (1999-2000). She has also conducted post-doctoral work at U.C. Berkeley (1996/1997), worked as a researcher on the interdisciplinary research project Femininity-Masculinity at the Faculty of Arts at the University of Gothenburg (1994-1999) and served as Lecturer and Head of the Department of Gender Studies (1992-1994). She is also a singer-songwriter.

Ongoing Research Projects

The Least Expected and Most Feared: Passions Between Women as a Motif in Swedish Literature 1900-1930

At the turn of the 20th century, same-sex love was a demonized and criminalized phenomenon; thus it was almost impossible to write openly and positively about it in fiction. Because of this, authors of the time were forced to establish some sort of protective distance from this potentially dangerous motif. 

During this same period, same-sex love received a great deal of attention from doctors, psychologists and researchers, whose work led to both the decriminalization of homosexuality in 1944 and the development of theories and beliefs that were problematic, especially from a literary point of view. Nonetheless, by the end of this period the literary depiction of the motif had become far more transparent and the project focuses on the processes involved in this transformation.

Making use of queer theory, the project disentangles new aesthetic dimensions in literature, examines depictions of same-sex love and describes how the motif has changed over time. The findings of this study then will be related to those found in my book, Love Story: Passions Between Women as a Motif in Swedish Literature 1830-1900 (2008). The Least Expected and Most Feared will explore texts of Frida Stéenhoff, Maria Sandel, Elsa Gille, Selma Lagerlöf, Klara Johanson, Lydia Wahlström, Agnes von Krusenstjerna, Gertrud Almqvist, Margareta Suber and Karin Boye. The project is funded by Riksbankens Jubileumsfond and spans the years 2010-2012.



  • Forbidden stories: Passions Between Women as a Motif in Swedish Literature 1900-1930 (Berättelser om det förbjudna. Begär mellan kvinnor i svensk litteratur 1900-1935), Makadam 2016.
  • Love Story. Passions between women in 19th century literature, (Kärlekshistoria), Kabusa Böcker, 2008.
  • On the images of women given by women writers in Swedish Romantic literature, (‘Om jag får be om ölost' Kring kvinnliga författares kvinnobilder i svensk romantik), Anamma 1991.

Anthologies, special issues

  • Homophobia today. (Den moderna homofobin), 2011.
  • Two stories of love, (Två berättelser om kärlek), 2006.
  • Intersectionality. (Intersektionalitet.),Tidskrift för genusvetenskap, 2005:2-3.
  • Incomparable Women. Gender transgressions in myth and history, (Makalösa kvinnor. Könsöverskridare i myt och verklighet), 2002.
  • Foundations and futures of Feminist Studies, (Kvinnovetenskapens vadan och varthän), 1996.
  • Lambda Nordica, 1996:1, 1996:2.
  • Queen Christina. Actress on the stages of life and history, (Drottning Kristina. Aktör på historiens och livets scen), 1995.
  • Women in romanticism. Essays on early nineteenth century literature, (Romantikens kvinnor. Studier i det tidiga 1800-talets litteratur), 1990.