Child Poverty, the Culture of Consumption, and Entrepreneurship in Literature and Culture for Children and Young Adults from the 1930s to Today

Pile of money coins in and outside the glass jar with the book on blurred natural green background for financial and education concept

The economy determines the conditions for all lives regardless of worldview or assets and is a continuing topic in the Nordic children's and youth literature. Money or rather the lack of it is a recurring motif from Laura Fitinghoffs The children from Frostmo Mountain (1907), via Astrid Lindgrens Rasmus on the fly (1956) to contemporary Elin Johansson's and Ellen Ekmans The week before the child allowance (2016).

One might think today’s privileged Nordic children need not worry about money, but according to Save the Children child poverty and social class gaps are increasing all over Europe.

This is discussed on November 26 at the Swedish Children's Book Institute. The program starts with lectures and ends with a panel discussion with the participants. These are: Elina Druker - Department stores and frozen motifs in picture books from 1930 to 1960s, Anna Cavallin - money, economy and housekeeping in Claques Pella books (1958-65) and Ingegerd granlund's Twelve letters to Tonina (1956), Peter Kostenniemi - neoliberalism and entrepreneurship in SVT's Christmas calendars Kaspar in Nudådalen (2001) also Thieves' Christmas (2011) and Lydia Wistisen - depictions of poverty in the Swedish picture book of the 2010s.

The lectures are based on new research published in the journal during the autumn Barnboken – Journal of Children's Literature Research on the theme of Money.

Date: November 26
Time: kl. 15:00 to 18:00
Place: The Swedish Institute for Children's Books, Odengatan 61, Stockholm (metro station: Odenplan)
Free entry

All lecturers are active at Stockholm University.
Anna Cavallin is a doctoral student and works as a study director in gender science at Stockholm University and with the research project "Children, Clothing, and Swedish Societal Norms", focusing on contemporary representations of norms in different media.

Elina Druker is a professor of literary science, especially children's and youth literature, and has mainly devoted himself to research in children's literature, modernism and avant-garde with special emphasis on relationships between different media.

Peter Kostenniemi is a doctoral student in literary science and investigates representation of children and of childhood in contemporary children's literary gothic published in Scandinavia. Other research interests include economic discourses in children's culture.

Lydia Wistisen is a doctor and researcher in literary science and is primarily devoted to youth literature and youth portrayal. Right now, she is working on a project on how the postwar era's changed view of young people and generational differences affect contemporary literature. She is also interested in stories from the Millionaire's high-rise suburbs in Sweden and similar areas in Europe.