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The North seen from the South in the Spanish reception of Selma Lagerlöf

Journal article
Authors Jenny Bergenmar
Published in European Journal of Scandinavian Studies
Volume 48
Issue 2
Pages 170-188
ISSN 2191-9399
Publication year 2018
Published at Department of Literature, History of Ideas, and Religion
Pages 170-188
Language en
Links https://doi.org/10.1515/ejss-2018-0...
Subject categories Specific Literatures

Abstract

When Selma Lagerlöf became a Nobel laureate in 1909, her works were translated into new languages and introduced to countries, including Spain, where she had previously been unknown. This article traces the image of Sweden and Scandinavia reflected in Selma Lagerlöf’s reception in Spanish newspapers and periodicals around 1910. The idea of a distinctive Nordic or Scandinavian identity is discernible in the critics’ characterizations of Lagerlöf’s works; how- ever, there is tension between their presentations of Lagerlöf as a representative of the region of Scandinavia or the North in general versus just one nation (Sweden) or province (Värmland). Building on research in imagology and literary transfer, this article investigates how and which regional, national, and provincial identi- ties, geographies, and stereotypes of North and South were activated in support of a particular idea of the author.

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