Biographies

All 'Biographies' are listed here in the order that they were published. We aim to have an assortment of biographies of individuals who are Nordic or have a connection to the Nordics, and who have made an impact on Nordic and/or international society in the modern era. Our long term aim is to focus on those who are little known and to be inclusive. 

Danish writer Dorrit Willumsen at the Copenhagen Book Fair 'BogForum', November 2015, Copenhagen, Denmark. Photo: Mogens Engelund (CC BY-SA 3.0)

2020.09.03 | Biography, Petra Broomans, Literature

Preview: Dorrit Willumsen (b. 1940)

Danish writer Dorrit Willumsen excels in historical, biographical novels.

Jan Eliasson in his capacity as United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, giving a speech in Somalia; he has worked on stabilising the country since 1992. Photo: AMISOM Public Information. Public Domain.

2020.07.28 | Biography, Jonathan Pugh, Governance

Jan Eliasson (b. 1940)

Jan Eliasson has been one of Sweden’s most prominent diplomats since as far back as the 1970s. Not only has he served in key roles for the Swedish Foreign Ministry and international organizations, but he is also renowned for his role as a mediator in numerous conflicts. His support for the concept of conflict prevention within the Swedish…

Greta Thunberg holding her original sign saying 'Skolstrejk för klimatet' [School strike for the climate]. Photo: Anders Hellberg, Wikimedia Commons. CC BY-SA 4.0.

2020.06.22 | Biography, Pernille Almlund, Globalisation

Greta Thunberg – a climate activist

The Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (born 2003) is in many ways a unique phenomenon and an inspiration to many activists all over the world, both children and adults, but she has also faced criticism from various quarters, not least climate change skeptics.

Stefan Jarl in 2013. Photo: Mikael Ringlander. Wikimedia Commons CC BY, Public Domain.

2020.03.11 | Biography, Lars Gustaf Andersson, The arts

Stefan Jarl (b. 1941)

Stefan Jarl is one of the most important and influential documentarists in contemporary Swedish cinema. Stefan Jarl was born in 1941 in Skara. From a left-wing perspective, he has highlighted social and environmental problems. Jarl has promoted the documentary as an art form, and from 1995 to 2005 he was curator of the ‘Little film festival’ in…

Jarl Kulle getting ready for the stage, 1960. Source: Wikimedia Commons. Public Domain.

2020.03.01 | Biography, Lars Gustaf Andersson, The arts

Jarl Kulle 1927-1997

The Swedish actor Jarl Kulle was a distinguished and popular actor working in a wide range of genres from children’s film to the cinema of Ingmar Bergman. He was born in Rebbelberga, Skåne, in 1927.

The painting Hip Hip Hurrah by Peder Severin Krøyer was the inspiration for Kjell Grede's film of the same name. Photo: Wikimedia Commons. Public Domain.

2020.02.21 | Biography, Lars Gustaf Andersson, The arts

Kjell Grede 1936 -­ 2017

The Swedish film director Kjell Grede made a significant contribution to film and television from 1967 to 1990s, heading the Dramatic Institute in Stockholm for nearly a decade.

Colin Nutley at Svenska filmhösten, 2014. Photo: Frankie Fouganthin. Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA-4.0.

2020.02.21 | Biography, Lars Gustaf Andersson, The arts

Colin Nutley b. 1944

The filmmaker Colin Nutley has made a great impact on Swedish film culture with a series of popular films. He was born in 1944 in Gosport, England, but has been working mainly in Sweden since the early 1980s.

Erland Josephson at the Royal Dramatic Theatre in Sweden 1965. Source: Wikimedia Commons. Public Domain.

2020.02.17 | Biography, Lars Gustaf Andersson, The arts

Erland Josephson 1923-2012

The multifarious Erland Josephson – actor, author, playwright – was a key figure in Swedish cultural life after the war. He was born in 1923 in Stockholm.

Portrait of Alf Sjöberg from 1942 when he was 39 years old, and had yet to make his popular break through. Photo: unknown. Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain.

2020.02.03 | Biography, Lars Gustaf Andersson, The arts

Alf Sjöberg 1903-1980

The Swedish actor and director of both film and drama Alf Sjöberg was an important artist, restlessly introducing new ideas about art and politics into Swedish culture, which could sometimes be rather insular. He was born in Stockholm in 1903.

A young Bengt Lindqvist. Photo: Synskadades Riksförbund.

2019.12.04 | Biography, Anna Derksen, Minorities, The Nordics in the World

Bengt Olof Lennart Lindqvist (1936-2016)

Bengt Lindqvist was a Swedish politician and an active member of Swedish and international disability organizations. He became deputy minister for social security in 1985, the first Swedish minister with a visual impairment, and served as the first United Nations Special Rapporteur on Disability from 1994 to 2002. In both the national and the…

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