Scandinavian Studies gains expert on contemporary Scandinavian literature

​New professor Claus Elholm Andersen delves deeply into Knausgård and writes widely on Danish literature and culture.

With experience teaching at the University of Helsinki and state universities in Los Angeles, Austin and the Twin Cities, Claus Elholm Andersen joins the Department of German, Nordic and Slavic as a new assistant professor of Danish.

Andersen, who was born in Denmark, is also the recipient of the Paul and Renate Madsen Professorship in Danish. He was drawn to the university partly because of the reputation of the department and its programs.

“Scandinavian Studies at UW-Madison has a long, proud history, the longest of any in the U.S., and with some of the top scholars in the field,” he says.

Andersen’s arrival brings expertise on contemporary Scandinavian literature, as well as the subject of the autobiography.

“My current research focuses on the six-volume autobiographical novel My Struggle by Norwegian author Karl Ove Knausgård,” he says. “I’m interested in the tension between the autobiographical and the literary, and I’m also looking into the ways in which Knausgård insists on the importance of the subject at a time when it has otherwise been declared dead.

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