The following criteria guide the selection of books and academic papers presented on these pages. The items should be:
Imaginative literature in Swedish or any other Nordic language including English (in a few cases French and German as well), that creates some kind of gay, lesbian or queer character in the text.
Research in the field of glbtq that has been used at Nordic universities. This research could be written in several languages, mostly English.
Works on gay, lesbian, bi, trans and queer (glbtq) literature and culture in a broad sense.
No articles are included in the bibliography. That would have made it too comprehensive.
The items are arranged in a yearly, chronological order and alphabetically within each year.
Each item has a link to some other site on the internet with further information on the bibliographical item. Sometimes the link refers to a full text edition of the book or paper mentioned. Sometimes I have not been able to find any relevant information on the net as to the book or paper mentioned.
The bibliography is under constant construction and will therefore never be “finished”.
I, who make this compilation, have a constructivist view of sexuality and society. That is to say that I do not think there is a mystical, metaphysical substance (soul, spirit, heart) that “exists” in the body (like a fluid or gas) and that expresses itself in a special form of writing. Instead every individual is created and creates, him- or herself, each and every minute, in collaboration with other individuals, as homo, bi or queer. Or any other form of identity.
It is therefore important to trace the discourses that create the notion of “the homosexual individual” since this is the most common non-heteronormative sexual inclination historically, and to see how these discourses are constructed. This is the main reason for establishing this bibliography. By investigating how “the homosexual individual” has been verbally constructed over the centuries one can (maybe) find the overall reasons of this construction in words. And hopefully, change the descriptions to incorporate “the homosexual individual” in discourses sanctioned by society (books, articles, newspaper columns and so forth), in a positive way and make lesbians, gay men and queers of advantage to society in these discourses. Thus it does not matter if the author “is” homosexual (or tends to any other kind of sexual inclination) or not since I do not believe in such a Being. What matters is, if there is any kind of non-heteronormative character constructed in the text or not. If there is such a construction the text is included in this bibliography whether this description paints a positive picture or not. Even the negative constructions are interesting in highlighting the heterosexual circumscription of socially allowed sexual practices.
In the beginning of my research, dating back to the early 1960’s, it was hard to find information about glbtq characters in literature. This has changed considerably during the last decades.
Most presentations in Swedish literature of “the homosexual individual” are very negative constructions and historically “the homosexual” has been construed as a pitiful individual. This has been so to satisfy the heterosexual majority and their view of themselves as the only, the natural and the morally correct sexual inclination. The view on sexuality has primarily been shaped by religious discourses.
Identity thus is something created every day in collaboration with other human beings. A socially construed picture of the individual, submitted to those discourses (or conversations) existing in every individual’s own history and producing this particular individual. Every individual then recreates him- or herself each and every day and moment in accordance with his or her own story – in an attempt to recreate emotional balance and orientation in life. The individual thus is an adjustable and formable entity. And at the same time a very conservative and maintaining entity who wants to recreate the same mental picture around him- or herself over and over again, not to loose grip of “reality” and be disturbed in his or her sensual perception of the world. “Reality” thus equals the description of reality in signs (language, films, pictures), a vicious circle that is almost impenetrable since the penetration of it is made through the vehicle of language (in a general sense) – the very medium that is supposed to be penetrated.
The opposite view of the individual emanates from the notion that there is ”something” static and forever lasting (whatever that could be) within every individual that gets an expression in signs (pictures and writing) by this individual. Hence the former focus on the evolution of the “soul” of the creative individual within research in comparative literature. The “soul” (or some equal entity) was supposed to express itself through the medium of signs (texts, paintings, moving pictures). And the individual harbouring this perfect soul should be a model to the rest of us!