Stockholm university

Elisabeth MansénProfessor emerita

About me

Elisabeth Mansén

Professor em. in History of Ideas.

Room: 308
Phone: +46 (0)72-4063649

The main themes of my research are the history of the five senses, and the history of spa culture in Sweden. Romantic literary salons, feminist classics and the cultural history of Sweden in the 18th century are among my further interests. 

Sveriges historia

”Swedish History 1731–1830” (688 pp, ill., in Swedish), volume 5 in a new history of Sweden, was published in November 2011 and offers a wide perspective of the period, including cultural, social and intellectual aspects. There are chapters on new research subjects concerning everyday life, travel, gardening, crime, gender, family, food and fashion, but main characters are still Carl Linnæus, Emanuel Swedenborg and Gustavus III. The aim of this series is to give a comprehensive historical view to a wider audience, and the thematic disposition of this volume allows for a personal touch.

Ett paradis på jorden

The history of Swedish spas and watering-places between 1680 and 1880 was the subject of a volume of almost 600 pages (in Swedish) published in 2001. A survey in English focused on the 18th century is published as ”An Image of Paradise. Swedish Spas in the 18th Century”, in Eighteenth Century Studies, University of Johns Hopkins, USA, summer 1998, ISSN 0013-2586, and a popular introduction can be found as ”Swedish spas and watering-places. A living tradition since 1680” in Thermae Europae. Project of European Union 3/2008.

Read the abstract for: A Paradise on Earth. On Swedish Spas and Watering-places 1680–1880

On the history of the five senses I have published a number of articles and edited a small anthology, where my own contribution focused on the tactile elements of the surrealist work of Meret Oppenheim.

Konsten att förgylla vardagen

My thesis invoked the art of beautifying everyday life, discussed the literary salons and argued that the notion of ’idealist realism’ be used for a nameless period in the Swedish history of ideas: 1830–1880, between romanticism and realism. The book is written in Swedish and has a summary in English.

Read the abstract for: The Art of Beautifying Everyday Life. Thekla Knös and Romantic Uppsala

Interest in gender studies has led to introductions and translations of works by John Stuart Mill, Harriet Taylor Mill, Oscar Wilde, Edgar Allan Poe, Virginia Woolf and Mary Wollstonecraft.

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