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Jakob Stougaard-Nielsen

Professor in Scandinavian and Comparative Literature, UCL

My research falls within the fields of Scandinavian and comparative literature. I have published studies on world literature, book history, discourse technologies, environmentalism, Hans Christian Andersen, Henry James, Scandinavian crime fiction and the welfare state. I am particularly interested in the inter-dependence of literature and materiality, literature and society - how publication formats, print cultures and visual cultures make literature 'matter', and how literature may contribute to our understanding of social change and our environment.

My book about Scandinavian Crime Fiction and the welfare state was published by Bloomsbury (2017). From September 2014 to 2017, I was a co-investigator on the AHRC (Translating Cultures) funded research project entitled Translating the Literatures of Small European Nations, which resulted in an edited volume with the same title published by Liverpool University Press (2020).

The same year saw the publication of a research-based textbook, Introduction to Nordic Cultures, which I edited with Annika Lindskog. This open-access book from UCL Press was the result of a collaboration between colleagues in the Department of Scandinavian Studies. In 2019-20, I was visiting researcher at the Hans Christian Andersen Research Center in Denmark, where I worked on a monograph on Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tales and the periodical press in the nineteenth century. Another current research interest of mine deals with Nordic Noir Networks across borders and media.

In 2010 I founded the pioneering Nordic Noir Book Club with colleagues and students in Scandinavian Studies. Initially supported by a UCL Beacon Bursary for Public Engagement, over the past decade the book club has played a central role in the exchange and furthering of knowledge and enthusiasm for Nordic crime fiction in the UK and beyond. I have been interviewed for books, journals, newspapers, radio and television in the U.K. and across Europe as an expert on Nordic crime fiction, Nordic cultures and societies.


  • –present
    Lecturer in Scandinavian Literature, University College London