Strindbergsbilden idag : En analys av åtta litteraturhistorier för gymnasiet
The purpose of this study has been to analyze the image of Strindberg in today's upper secondary school. How is the author portrayed in the textbooks and teaching aids, and which parts of the authorship does the textbook and teaching aids authors choose to focus on?
This work has been implemented in the form of a textbook and teaching aids survey where eight textbooks for the upper secondary school from 1989 to 2008 has been analyzed with focus on the sections that consider Strindberg and his authorships.
What emerges when studying these textbooks and teaching aids is that they give a rather synonymous picture of the man and the author Strindberg. Big focus is aimed on private life and the scandals that the author more or less voluntary became a part of. The majority of the textbooks treats matters as ”the misogynist” and ” the critic of society” and the so called Inferno crisis, and also when one discusses the literary works it is done in the light of the author's own life and accomplishments.
When it comes to the author's literary production it is a very limited selection that is presented to the students. It is mainly two works that are mentioned, Röda Rummet and Hemsöborna, and these two novels gets to symbolize the author's revolts in the first case and his greatness as an author in the last mentioned case.
Main focus in these eight textbooks lies on the prose, but also Strindberg’s drama gets a lot of attention with titles such as Fröken Julie and Ett drömspel most frequently mentioned. Strindberg’s greatness as a playwright is also mentioned, often together with longer extracts, but the geniality of his work is never explained or justified in a pedagogic way.
Strindberg is already seen as an icon in Swedish literature, an image that is only strengthen by the telling of his versatile artistry such as painting, photographing and guitar playing. Moreover, it is mentioned in connection with that one recurs to the author's permanent outcomes and attacks on the establishment. It is in other word the image of the great artist that is presented. The artist who’s ability admittedly passes the common people, but at the same time permanent is misinterpreted and is being forced to fight for his right.
This myth around the author is however a relatively late invention. In the textbooks that were used during the early 1900´s for example a lot of criticism was aimed at Strindberg both for lack of correctness in his historical works and in connection with his society critical attitudes.
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