»Som en vildfogel i en bur«. Gestaltningen av kvinnlig erfarenhet i Anne Charlotte Lefflers Elfvan

Birgitta Johansson Lindh


Anne Charlotte Leffler’s play Elfvan (The Elf) (1880) depicts a young woman’s first alienating experience of marriage. The motif of the young woman’s difficulties to fit the role as the governor’s wife in a small Swedish town is connected to the motif of her growing up, including her first sensation of sexual desire. The aim of the article is to illuminate how the embodied experience of a young bourgeois woman is created in the play. The main character’s emotions and bodily sensations are highlighted. The analysis also deals with narration of the young girl’s desire to expose her uniqueness for others to recognize. It furthermore sheds light on the depiction of the emancipating power of the young girl’s access to her biography, which contributes to the widening of her narrow social space as a young bourgeois wife. In so doing Iris Marion Young’s and Adriana Cavarero’s different angles to feminist phenomenology are combined.

Full Text: PDF