From cheery chums to death mates – aspects of masculinity in swedish boys’ books and young adult fiction

Project leader

Funding source

Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (RJ)

Project Details

Start date: 01/01/2010
Funding: 1995000 SEK


This project starts off with a bibliographic inventory of the field of Swedish boy’s books, a survey which also discuss the historical roots of this literary tradition and problems with the genre issue. In the project’s next phase, a representative part will be drawn from this text corpus, and this set of key text will be a subject to several thematic studies. Critical studies about men, masculinities and homosociality represent key approaches to this study. The first step is to establish representations of the hegemonic ideal of masculinity in the texts, and thereafter compere this role models with the boy protagonist’s, and examine how they agree and differ. There will also be a chapter dealing with the relationship between the boy protagonist’s and femininity, which includes women protagonist’s as well as traditionell female qualities and the domestic world of women. Furthermore, the project will explore the concept of a free nation of boys in the texts; a distinct cultural world with its own rituals and values, set in its own boundaries and often free from adult intervention. The hierarchies and the functions within the gang of boys will be studied, in terms of homosociality and homosocial attraction. Also the boy’s jargong in the texts will be examined as a male coded discourse. The present project aims at filling a gap in Swedish literary scholarship; up to date there are no major study about the Swedish boy’s book.

Last updated on 2017-29-03 at 17:13