Professor at Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies Units: History
YA, Norra Beteendevetarhuset Umeå universitet, 901 87 Umeå
Enjoying an ERC Consolidator Grant (2016-21) I lead a cross-disciplinary team researching how disabilities affect people's participation in society, past and present.
My research is mainly based on parish registers digitized by the Demographic Data Base (DDB). These registers are also used in my current research project funded by the European Research Council (ERC Consolidator Grant, DISLIFE-647125) where I am analyzing disabled people's life courses and opportunity structures in 19th- and 20th-century Sweden. As I have gained knowledge in theories and methods developed in statistics, demography, geography, sociology and criminology and gender studies, my historical research have received an interdisciplinary profile.
As a teacher I am interested in history didactic issues, in particular the use of digitized sources and what consequences it brings for students and their teachers. I have extensive experience teaching history at al levels. Presently and due to my ERC Grant, I primarily conduct disability research beside supervising PhD students. During the period 2011 to 2015, I was Deputy Dean at the Faculty of Arts.
My historical demographic research is characterized by a gender perspective that has followed me since I as student examined men and women's emigration to America from my home municipallity Kisa in southern Östergötland. I discovered not only how information-rich parish registers are, but also the benefits with combining them with other sources, not least the letters US immigrants from Kisa sent home. A mix of sources are also used in my thesis (2003), which investigates gendered migration motives and migration patterns in Sundsvall 1840-1892. The use of different data further characterizes my analyses of the life of criminal men and women, and of urban women, their family and work.
Analyzing life courses
The digitized parish registers of the Demographic Data Base enable quantitative studies of individuals' marriage patterns, career paths, family formation, and socio-geographic mobility. I often employ statistical life course analysis that helps me estimate the individual risk/chance to migrating, for example, making a career, marrying or confronting premature death. Such demographic life events reflect people's living conditions and how these vary depending on historical contexts and whether they were men, women, poor, wealthy, migrants, criminal or disabled, for example.