Elsa Eschelsson (1861-1911) was the second woman in Sweden to receive a PhD. A brilliant academic, she was awarded her doctorate in Law at Uppsala University in 1897. She immediately received a fellowship, thus becoming the first female university lecturer in Sweden.
Elsa Eschelsson lectured in civil and procedural law, and published articles which were considered important contributions to the field. Despite her great talent and high productivity, however, she was never allowed to become a professor. Instead, she was slandered to such a degree that she chose to take her own life, in 1911. Continue reading Elsa Eschelsson →
When Anna Bugge received an offer of non-marriage from Knut Wicksell, she hesitated. Wicksell did not believe in the institution of marriage, being of the opinion that the legal definition of a wife as the property of the husband degraded women. Anna Bugge agreed, but the step from principle to action was perilous.
Anna Bugge was born in Norway in 1862, and belonged to the first generation of girls to be granted an education almost equal to that of boys. At school she helped form a female debating society, discussing topics such as “What defines a woman, and should one exert oneself to remain feminine?”. (The conclusion: “Every woman’s goal ought to be to get rid of her femininity, and it would be glorious to see the day when this term is deemed old-fashioned”.)
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Karolina Widerström, born in 1856, enjoyed a long and productive career not only as a physician but also as a politician and a champion of women’s rights. Her father, a physiotherapist, encouraged his daughter to follow in his footsteps, which she did. However, Widerström soon realised that she wanted to go into medicine.
Women were given the right to obtain an academic degree in Sweden in 1873, and Widerström began her medical studies in Uppsala in 1879. She received a licentiate degree in medicine from the Karolinska Institute in 1888.
Continue reading Karolina Widerström – Sweden’s First Female Physician →