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Research in the border zone between literature and music

In his new research project, literature professor Axel Englund studies the corporeality of music in novels written by modernist writers, including Proust, Mann and Musil. By studying the relationship between music, corporeality and sexuality among these modernist writers, he wants to provide a new understanding of music’s central role in the modern novel.

With his thorough grounding in music, professor in literature and Wallenberg Academy Fellow Axel Englund interdisiplinary research concerns intermedial relations between words and music, operatic performance, music-related poetry and prose representations of music-making. After high school he studied theory of music and composition in Sweden and Germany. In a a reportage about Englund by the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation, he says:

Thanks to the Wallenberg Academy Fellow scheme, I now have the time to read and think in peace, and have been able to pursue the lines of inquiry that are most intellectually fruitful. Most of all, I value the freedom. Research requires you to come up with new ideas. Many researchers today, however, are obliged to follow a predetermined plan, and are prevented from following up the most interesting insights.

Read the whole reportage here

Find out more about Axel Englund's research

Axel Englund, professor i litteraturvetenskap vid Institutionen för kultur och estetik. Foto: Edith Askegård.