The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here:

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Det idylliska kaoset

Idyll och pastorala ideal i svensk barnlitteratur från två epoker


  • Lukas Olsson

Summary, in Swedish

The aim of this study is to examine idyllic romanticism and pastoral ideals in Swedish children’s literature from two distinct periods of history: the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, and the 21st century. During the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, Sweden underwent a radical societal change from an agricultural society to an industrial one. As a response to these changes, there was an increase of children’s literature depicting and romanticising agricultural and countryside life with pastoral and idyllic themes.
In modern times one could argue that a new modernization process is occurring where society goes from being an industrial one towards being an increasingly digital one. Additionally, concerns about climate change plays a key role in the contemporary discourse. These factors may suggest a potential increase of pastoral and nature romanticism that glorifies the pastoral ideal and a life where nature and civilisation co-exists in harmony. But what changes can we see in the portraying of idyllic life between the two periods of time? And what might this tell us about our view of the idyllic, nature, civilisation, and modernization processes?
The study will focus on three works of children’s literature from the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, as well as three works from the 21st century. The selected works include: Ängsblommor (1890) by Ottilia Adelborg, Solhult (1901) by Jeanna Oterdahl, Pelles nya kläder (1912) by Elsa Beskow, Bu och Bä får besök (2006) by Lena and Olof Landström, Findus flyttar ut (2012) by Sven Nordqvist, and Vi går till parken (2021) by Beatrice Alemagna and Sara Stridsberg.
The English title of this study is The Idyllic Chaos – Idyllic themes and pastoral ideals in Swedish children’s literature from two eras.


  • Master's Programme: Literature - Culture - Media

Publishing year




Document type

Student publication for Master's degree (two years)


  • Languages and Literatures


  • Nyckelord: Pastoral
  • pastoralt ideal
  • idyllromantik
  • barnlitteratur
  • moderniseringsprocesser
  • natur
  • civilisation
  • sekelskiftet 1900
  • 2000-talet
  • litteraturvetenskap
  • idéhistoria
  • kaos. Key words: Pastoral
  • pastoral ideal
  • idyllic romanticism
  • children’s literature
  • modernization processes
  • nature
  • turn of the 19th and 20th centuries
  • 21st century
  • literary studies
  • history of ideas
  • chaos.


  • Karin Nykvist (Fellow researcher)