Analyzing the exhibition of "Swedish Dads"
In my research, I am interested in how images of fathers are portrayed, displayed and exhibited. In particular, I am interested in an exhibition called ‘Swedish Dads’ which was produced by Swedish photographer Johan Bävman. This exhibition was later adopted by the Swedish Institute as a means of show-casing the Swedish parental leave system and promoting the notion of gender-equal parenting as a means of achieving gender equality.
The exhibition has subsequently travelled to Swedish embassies in over 35 countries. Many of these countries also hosted their own photo competitions whereby local fathers could submit images of themselves and their children. In some cases, the winning images were exhibited together with the ‘Swedish Dad’ exhibition.
Together, these images and exhibitions (along with the surrounding documentation and media coverage) constitute the material for my study.
Originally from South Africa, I moved to Sweden in 2014 in order to do my Masters in Child Studies at the Department of Thematic Studies (Tema Barn). Thereafter, I began my PhD in 2016 where I am currently working under the guidance and supervision of Prof. Anna Sparrman. I have a diverse, inter-disciplinary background. I primarily consider myself a qualitative researcher, with an interest in narratives, gender and identity. However, I have also studied Demography and Populations Studies and have worked as a quantitative researcher for a non-governmental organization in South Africa. I hold a Master’s degree in the Sociology of Health and Illness (Wits University, South Africa), as well as a Master’s degree in Child Studies (Linköping University, Sweden).
Sarah Mitchell talks at TEDxNorrköping Salon. Photo: Emelie Fälton