Archive for the ‘Barbro Lindgren’ Category

A teacher’s guide to Barbro Lindgren’s Hemligt (Secret) trilogy is launched today

March 10, 2015

Today the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award publish a teacher’s guide to Barbro Lindgren’s books Jättehemligt (Super Secret, 1971), Världshemligt (Top Secret, 1972) and Bladen brinner (Pages on Fire, 1973). The teacher’s guide is written by researcher and jury member Maria Lassén-Seger.

– The guide is for anyone who wants to know more about the books and would like tips on how to introduce them to young readers, says Maria Lassén-Seger. I hope it will encourage people to read, reflect on, and discuss the books.

The Secret books are fictional diaries inspired by Barbro Lindgren’s memories of her own childhood and teenage years, even though she notes that not quite everything in the books is true. The trilogy includes the young Barbro’s diary entries from ages 10 to 15, in which she records her innermost thoughts about things that are nice, awful, or just plain weird. The teacher’s guide poses questions to the reader about the books, questions that allow the reader to get under the surface of the story to deepen the reading: What things do people expect of Barbro as a girl? Are they the same things people expect of girls today? It is hard for Barbro to fit in and be a part of larger groups. What groups does she try to fit into? Why do you think this is hard for her?

– The Secret books were among my most important reading experiences when I was young, says Maria Lassén-Seger. I have reread them often over the years and I am amazed at how powerful they still are. They are so heartfelt, so honest, and so devastatingly well-written.

Maria thinks everyone should read the Secret books:
– But especially young people who think life can be both nice and awful, and who wonder if anyone else in the world feels the same way.

The Award office has previously published 14 reading guides by 11 laureates. All of them can be downloaded for free here.

Link to the new Reading guide here.

Barbro Lindgren’s The Story of the Little Old Man now as a theatre play

December 11, 2014
Cover of The story of the Little Old Man

Cover of The story of the Little Old Man

On Saturday December 13th theatre play The story of the little gentleman opens at Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, U.S. It’s based on Barbro Lindgren’s story The Story of the Little Old Man.

“We’re thrilled to bring to our community this quiet alternative to traditional holiday fare,” says director Mark Sutton in an interview. “It’s a challenge and a great privilege as theatre artists to get the opportunity to tell such a story with so little dialogue.

The story of the Little Old Man (first published in Sweden by Rabén & Sjögren in 1979, distributed in the United States by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1992) marked the beginning of Barbro Lindgren’s long-lived co-operation with illustrator Eva Eriksson. The book was also her first of many for the very young. In it, we meet two figures to whom Barbro Lindgren would frequently return – a lonely human and a friendly dog. In this poignant tale of friendship, it is the dog, placing a cold nose in the old man’s hand, which assuages the man’s feelings of abandonment.

The theatre describe the play as a “delightful story about the true meaning of friendship. Nobody seems to have time for the little gentleman, which makes him sad. But he soon discovers a wonderful new friend who changes his life forever. This beautiful, funny and moving tale features live musicians and a uniquely intimate style all its own.”

Barbro Lindgren. Photo: Stefan Tell

Barbro Lindgren. Photo: Stefan Tell

Will Barbro Lindgren’s latest children’s book be rewarded tonight?

November 24, 2014
Cover of Nu leker vi den fula ankungen. Eva Lindström and Barbro Lingren. Photo: Rabén & Sjögren.

Cover of Nu leker vi den fula ankungen. Eva Lindström and Barbro Lingren. Photo: Rabén & Sjögren.

Barbro Lindgren’s Nu leker vi den fula ankungen (Let´s play the ugly duckling, illustrations by Eva Lindström, Rabén & Sjögren 2014) are one of the nominated candidates in the category for Best Swedish Children’s Book of the Year at tonight’s August Prize gala.

The citation of the jury (our translation):

Anything is possible in children’s play. When Barbro Lindgren let children play H.C. Andersen’s Ugly Duckling, something happens. The humorous childlike dialogue reshapes the whole story. The moral change. The duckling transforms from an outcast to a unique creature, but on new terms. The untidy duckling’s fragile appearance stands out in both the throng of ducklings and on spreads with large, pure color fields in a dim range of colors. Eva Lindström captures the little bird’s vulnerability to perfection. But also its inner growth.

The August Prize was founded by the Swedish Publishers’ Association in 1989, to institute an annual award for the best Swedish books of the year in order to increase public interest in Swedish contemporary literature. The other three categories which will be announced tonight is: Best Swedish Fiction Book of the Year, Best Swedish Non-Fiction Book of the Year and the August Prize for Young Writers.

You can follow the August Prize gala live here starting 5:30 pm CET!

Book by Barbro Lindgren in Happy Meal book project

October 13, 2014
Julia wants a pet (illustrated by Eva Eriksson) Rabén & Sjögren

Julia wants a pet (illustrated by Eva Eriksson) Rabén & Sjögren

The Happy Meal book project is a collaboration between Swedish reading promotion organisation “Läsrörelsen” (approx. The reading movement) and Mc Donalds. Going on since 2001, the motto is “Give your children a language”. The books, distributed in all Happy meals during a defined period, are chosen by children’s book expert Marianne von Baumgarten-Lindberg, member of the Läsrörelsen board. This year’s Happy Meal Book project is going on between October 17 and November 13. The first book to be distributed is Barbro Lindgren’s Julia wants a pet (illustrated by Eva Eriksson).

Elisabet Reslegård

Elisabet Reslegård

– To understand and make yourself understood is a prerequisite for democracy, says Elisabeth Reslegård, Chairman of Läsrörelsen. A vivid and rich language is established during children’s pre-school age. Reading aloud is very important when it comes to fighting against language poverty, and to be able to reach out through the McDonald’s arena is really fantastic.

Läsrörlsen's brilliant poster from the Göteborg Book Fair. "Whitout a language other expressions will take over."

Läsrörlsen’s brilliant poster from the Göteborg Book Fair. “Whitout a language other expressions will take over.”

New video from Göteborg Book Fair!

September 26, 2014

Huge audience listened to Barbro Lindgren in Gothenburg

September 26, 2014
Lots and lots of book signings...

Lots and lots of book signings…

The visitors of the Göteborg Book Fair rallied around for Barbro Lindgren’s program yesterday, all of them were very well attended. The day began with a public conversation at the Swedish Arts Council’s stage with jury member Mats Kempe. Then, the time just flew with a full agenda, lots of book signings and many, many fans wanted to speak with Barbro and show their appreciation.

The obvious question on most scenes was, of course, about if Barbro Lindgren’s life had changed in any way after the announcement of the ALMA. The answer was that now almost everything was back to normal. Almost. Except that more people recognize her. (“I didn´t think I could write for a while. But after a few weeks I was able to get started again.”)

The day ended with a 45 minute-seminar in a crowded Seminar Hall with jury member Maria Lassén-Seger. The conversation was among other things about Barbro Lindgren’s childhood and how it has affected her writing, but also about her ability to speak directly to the child, whether she is offering amusing escapades or more serious reflections.

“I’m not interested in others than the underdogs. Happy childhoods are not for me. ”

Two younger fans asking for autographs.

Two younger fans asking for autographs.

Interview at Daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter's stage.

Interview at Daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter’s stage.

Preparing for the final seminar with Maria Lassén-Seger.

Preparing for the final seminar with Maria Lassén-Seger.

Maria Lassén-Seger and Barbro Lindgren.

Maria Lassén-Seger and Barbro Lindgren.

“A tribute to the game and the imagination” – new book by Barbro Lindgren

September 3, 2014

fula ankungen
She doesn´t really write books for children and young people anymore, she says. But the other week Nu leker vi den fula ankungen (Let´s play the Ugly Duckling) was launched by publishing house Rabén&Sjögren. Barbro Lindgren retells the classic H.C. Andersen-tale of the swan kid growing up in a duckfamily. But in this book, “a tribute to the game and the imagination”, two children with a lot of imagination are playing all the leading characters. The book is also the result of a new collaboration between Barbro Lindgren and Eva Lindström, one of Sweden’s most famous illustrators. Moa Brunnberg is publisher at Rabén&Sjögren:

A new by book by Barbro Lindgren despite of the face that she says she has stoped writing children’s book. Why is that? MB: You´ll have to ask Barbro about that. We are so happy that she continues to write for children.

How come Eva Lindström was chosen to illustrate the book? MB: Eva Lindström is a fantastic illustrator! It felt very natural for us to ask her to illustrate to book. She has an irresistible humor and possesses a visual narrative which is completely unique.

Barbro Lindgren will present the book at the Göteborg Book Fair on Thursday September 26 at 2:15 pm in Rabén&Sjögren’s stand.

Eva Lindström and Barbro Lindgren. Photo: Rebecka Uhlin

Eva Lindström and Barbro Lindgren. Photo: Rebecka Uhlin

Barbro Lindgren to Göteborg Book Fair

June 18, 2014
Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

Meet Barbro Lindgren at the Göteborg Book Fair in Gothenburg. On Thursday, September 25, she participates in a seminar about imagination and the conditions of freedom and writing with jury member Maria Lassén-Seger, critic of children’s literature and librarian at Åbo Academy University. She will also participate in a number of short public talks on Ung scen (Young Stage) and will visit other exhibitor’s stands at the fair in the program for Thursday.

The laureate’s participation is part of the Swedish Arts Council’s commitment to a program with focus on children’s and young adult literature and reading promotion. Under the theme Children’s Right to Culture workshops, exhibitions and lectures are arranged at Ung scen (Young Stage) in Hall A at the book fair.

A detailed program for Barbro Lindgren’s participation will be published on the ALMA web in September.

Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

Yousef Al Muhaimeed about Astrid Lindgren and children’s literature in Sweden

June 18, 2014
Visit to Astrid Lindgren's childhood home at Näs, Vimmerby. Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute

Visit to Astrid Lindgren’s childhood home at Näs, Vimmerby. Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute

1537Saudi Arabian journalist and writer Yousef Al Muhaimeed from Al-Jazirah newspaper where one of the participants in the delegation of international media invited by the Swedish Institute to the press program “Culture for Children”. The program content ranged from visit to the House of Culture and Swedish National Television in Stockholm, to visit Astrid Lindgren’s birthplace Vimmerby in the south of Sweden. Here are extracts from his articles, translated from Arabic:

Sweden and the Swedes are proud of their great writer of children’s books; Astrid Lindgren. Astrid Lindgren died in 2002. To honour her memory, the Swedish government founded an international award in her name, the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award.

The award is 5 million SEK, making it the largest international children’s literature award in the world. It has been awarded to writers of different countries of the world over the past twelve years, without going to any Swedish writer, making it the subject of criticism by the Swedes. They wondered how we have been giving this award that bears the name of Astrid Lindgren to so many writers, without awarding a single Swedish writer, despite the fact that children’s literature in Sweden is booming a host of wonderful writers.

This year, things were different; the award went to Swedish children’s writer Barbro Lindgren. I was among four foreign journalists, lucky enough to interview the winner Barbro Lindgren a few hours before the ceremony.

Barbro is a simple, modest lady of seventy, with a great sense of humor. She does not follow a routine with a specific time to write, she says that she goes to write whenever she feels ready but she usually writes on a daily basis…

The best thing about Sweden, the third largest European country, and the least populous, around 9.5 million people on its territory, at a rate of 23 people per square kilometer, is the great interest in children’s literature. This might cause frustration when we compare it to Arab countries in general and to Saudi Arabia in particular.  My country has the human competencies and financial resources to accomplish great projects for children and young people, especially as 60% of our total population is children and young people.

Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute

Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute

It is striking that the public libraries of children in Sweden do not contain only paper and electronic books as we might assume in the Arab world. It is an amazing world, where the child, of any age category, might spend a full day without getting bored. In this library, for example, there are several sections for various age groups, from zero to two years, three to six years, seven to nine years, and ten to thirteen years. Each section is designed taking into account the different conditions and needs of children; safety, interests .. etc.  You might see a toddler, accompanied by his father or his mother, crawling around the painted books, just to be familiar with books from early childhood.

All kinds of activities; playing, painting and story-telling are being practiced in the library; the children’s second home !

Astrid Lindgren grew up in a typical Swedish small house at a tiny village called Vimmerby, three hundred and fifty kilometers south of Stockholm. The Swedish Government made the house where Astrid was born a museum open to visitors all the year round. “Astrid Lindgren’s World” includes the author’s childhood home as well as a recently-built exhibition hall. Astrid Lindgren´s World is a unique theatre-park. Here you can meet Pippi, Emil, and all the other characters. It’s Sweden’s largest children’s theatre-park, all based on Astrid Lindgren’s texts. About half a million tourists visit Astrid Lindgren’s World every year. Even though, it might not be compared to the American Disney Land, but it has a unique flavor of Sweden, which is far much better than reproducing the culture of others and imitating their ideas.

Visiting Astrid Lindgren's World in Vimmerby. Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute

Visiting Astrid Lindgren’s World in Vimmerby. Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute


Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute

Photo: Sergio Guimaraes, Swedish Institute

Presentation of Barbro Lindgren and her works

June 16, 2014

This presentation of Barbro Lindgren and her works was broadcast for the first time at the Award ceremony at the Stockholms Concert Hall on June 2, 2014.