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Becoming Healthy, Free and Physically Active: Medical Discourse on Girls in Sweden c. 1880-1930
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences. (CFS)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1882-4799
2013 (English)In: Girlhood Studies, ISSN 1938-8209, E-ISSN 1938-8322, Vol. 6, no 2, p. 101-118Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The sick girl was a popular stereotype in Swedish medical discourse around 1900. It was established by medical authorities at the time that a substantial number of Swedish girls suffered from various diseases and ailments. However, at the beginning of the twentieth century, at a time when the welfare state was gradually evolving in the Nordic countries, the scientific opinion of girls changed. The new girl was represented as healthy and active. This article examines the medical discourse on girls, and their activity and health in Sweden during circa 1880 to 1930. It reveals patterns of the medicalization of girls as well as categorizations and constructions of girlhood that corresponded with contemporaneous notions of gender. It reveals a recurring, if inconstant, problematization of girls' illness and lack of adequate physical activity. In this article I will show how the discussions about girls around 1900 share several similarities with current ones.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Berghahn Books, 2013. Vol. 6, no 2, p. 101-118
Keywords [en]
GENDER; HEALTH; HISTORY OF MEDICINE; MORBIDITY; PHYSICAL EDUCATION; WELFARE STATE
National Category
History Gender Studies
Research subject
History
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-33161DOI: 10.3167/ghs.2013.060208OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-33161DiVA, id: diva2:689301
Available from: 2014-01-20 Created: 2014-01-20 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved

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Frih, Anna-Karin

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  • asciidoc
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