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Department of Arts and Cultural Sciences

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology | Lund University

Ethnology

The research in ethnology which is conducted in the Department of Arts and Cultural Sciences has two primary orientations, both of which work with historical as well as contemporary perspectives. The first orientation focuses on practices of everyday life – that is to say the study of what people do in their daily lives and how such activities constitute the grounds for different cultural patters of thought and societal values. Ethnological research in this area of study problematizes the manner in which we can understand daily life in Sweden, in the past as well as presently. How do people organize their lives? What types of daily routines do we have, and how do such routines help us create order in our lives? Research in this area of study draws attention to ordinary phenomena and events which we take for granted, and perhaps perceive as “normal”. Ethnology investigates how such phenomena are anchored in deeper and more complex cultural patterns. In so doing, it draws awareness to just how fragile perceptions of “normality” can be in different contexts. But it also highlights how hard it can be to change such patterns of daily life in other contexts. This research addresses everything from the question of what people daydream about, and the ideas people have about the food they eat to what it is that affects people’s choices of names for their children and the way in which they celebrate special occasions with friends and family. In other words, research on the practices of everyday life demonstrate that much of that which we take for granted in daily life is of extreme importance to us. And the research that we conduct in ethnology thereby aims to highlight and increase our understanding of the dynamics that are embedded in daily life.

The other primary orientation which we ethnologists in Lund work with focuses on the study of different forms of cultural meetings and encounters, and what it is that happens in the meeting of different people, groups, and culturally bound trends. This research is partially oriented towards phenomena associated with national or ethnic belonging, socioeconomic background, age, and gender which affect how people perceive the world around them, their place in that world, and their own potential to change the conditions of their daily lives. How can we understand the development of new arenas of the cultural economy, as an aspect of the post-industrial society? How can we understand violence as a cultural phenomenon? In what ways have our understandings of physical and psychological well-being changed over time, and how do they affect our perception of the body and soul today?

The ethnological research conducted in Lund within these two orientations (the practices of everyday life and cultural meetings and encounters) is divided into four thematic areas.

  1. Culture, Body and Health:
    Within this theme one finds research on organ trafficking, xenotransplantation, children’s diabetes, stroke and degenerative sicknesses, child obesity, psychological ailment as well as Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease.
  2. The Cultural Economy:
    This includes research on tourism, travel, computer games, cultural heritage, spas, and food and meals.
  3. Cultural Heritage and the Use of History:
    This includes studies of how cultural heritage is produced, politicized and used in the creation of collective identities.
  4. Cultural Identity:
    This includes research on names, gender, ethnicity, national identity and violence. 

Researchers

Adam Brenthel, Researcher

Jessica Enevold, Senior Lecturer

Jonas Frykman, Professor Emeritus

Lizette Gradén, Researcher

Karin Gustavsson, Researcher

Charlotte Hagström, Reader, Senior Lecturer

Kristofer Hansson, Reader, Researcher

Markus Idvall, Reader, Researcher, Senior Lecturer

Rachel Irwin, Postdoctoral Fellow

Håkan Jönsson, Reader, Researcher, Senior Lecturer

Lars-Eric Jönsson, Professor

Susanne Lundin, Professor

Jakob Löfgren, Researcher

Orvar Löfgren, Professor Emeritus

Inger Lövkrona, Professor Emerita

Gabriella Nilsson, Reader, Researcher, Senior Lecturer

Thomas O'Dell, Professor

Karin Salomonsson, Reader, Senior Lecturer

Magnus Wikdahl, Senior Lecturer

Robert Willim, Reader, Senior Lecturer

Lynn Åkesson, Professor

Doctoral students

Research projects

Completed research projects

Publications

Books (100)
Editorships (76)
Articles (283)
Book chapters (368)
Encyclopaedia entries (4)
Conference contributions (184)
Reports (51)
Working papers (11)
Reviews (131)
Articles in specialist publications and popular press (71)
Newspaper articles (65)
Miscellaneous (11)