Anne Sigrid Refsum
Background and activities
I am a PhD Candidate in Scandinavian Literature at the Department of Language and Literature. My masters' degree (NTNU, 2016) is in Scandinavian Literature. My masters' thesis was a comparative analysis of nearly 100 Norwegian variants of the ballad Dei to søstrene/Horpa (TSB A 38, in English known as Child 10 'The Twa Sisters). I have a bachelor's degree in Scandinavian Studies and English, and have studied Norwegian Traditional Music and Drama and Theatre. I am also an experienced choral singer.
- Skilling ballads (Norwegian broadside ballads)
- Popular culture and literature
- Orality and oral tradition
- Folk tales
- Literary history from below
- Song lyrics
My PhD project is part of the Norwegian Research Council funded project "Norwegian Broadside Ballads 1550-1950. Recovering a Lost Cultural Heritage". The Norwegian equivalent of broadside ballads - skillingsviser or skilling ballads - has been a neglected area of study up until recent times. These texts shed significant light on the social, literary and media history of especially the lower classes. For my project I have collected a vast corpus of more than a thousand songs. I wish to use these songs to explore what sort of literary influence and cultural influence they might have had on the general public. What were the 'Greatest Hits' of the time, and to what extent were they shared across different communities? How did these songs connect urban and rural, elite and common audiences?
Formerly I have been a research assistant in the Norwegian Broadside Ballads project, and as an assistant professor I have been involved in teaching the modules NORD 1108 and NORD 6104. I have also developed my own module in Scandinavian literature under the designation NORD 2100: "The other literary history. Popular literature in oral and written tradition approx. 1600-1900".
I am also part of a national group of researchers working with song lyrics as a distinct genre of text, based at the University of Agder.