Claus Elholm Andersen
Assistant Professor, Nordic

Languages:  Danish, though I am currently working on the Norwegian author Karl Ove Knausgård.

Research/Language Interests: In my research, I am mainly interested in the novel and in questions of fiction and fictionality: What it is, how it works, and what it implies. My current work focuses on contemporary Scandinavian literature, but I have also written about The Modern Breakthrough in Scandinavian literature, about Kierkegaard and irony, and about the crime novels of Stieg Larson. In 2018, I co-edited (with Dag Heede and Stig Olsen) a special issue of Spring on the Danish author Helle Helle. I have also edited and co-edited two-volumes on Karl Ove Knausgård’s My Struggle (one, forthcoming as a special issue of Scandinavian Studies, with Dean Krouk), and I currently work on a book-length project called Reading My Struggle.

Education: Ph.D, University of Helsinki 2015, Cand.mag, University of Copenhagen, 1999, BA, University of Copenhagen, 2006.

Undergraduate Courses: Hans Christian Andersen (Scand 373), Contemporary Scandinavian Literature (Scand 427), Contemporary Scandinavia: Politics and History (Scand 577), Readings in Danish Literature (Scand 271), Contemporary Scandinavian Languages (Scand 401), Graduate Seminar in Professional Development (GNS 700), a d Knausgård and Postfiction (Scand 901)

About Me: I am the Paul and Renate Madsen Assistant Professor of Scandinavian Studies. I joined the department in 2017, coming to Madison from the University of Helsinki where I also received my Ph.D. in 2015. In addition to my scholarly work, I have been a book critic and columnist for the newspaper Hufvudsstadsbladet in Finland since 2013. Through the Badger Talks Program, I have given numerous talks around Wisconsin on hygge and happiness.


Edited volumes:


  • “A Stranger in His Own House. Nothingness and Alienation in Henrik Pontoppidan’s Lucky-Per,in Scandinavian Studies (forthcoming)
  • “’Alle veje fører til veje.’ Om sorg og skrift i Helle Helles de”, in: Edda, 4, 2019 (forthcoming).
  • “Narratives of a Life. Karl Ove Knausgård’s My Struggle as a Literary Centaur”, in: Critical Quarterly, vol. 60, issue 2, 2018, Wiley-Blackwell (
  • “Verden åbnede sig for mig, mens jeg skrev. Imitation og metafiktionalitet i Helle Helles Dette burde skrives i nutid, in: Spring: tidskrift for moderne dansk litteratur, no. 43, 2018
  • “Bælgøjede fiktioner. Om Kristina Stolz’ Som om, in: Spring: tidsskrift for moderne dansk litteratur, no. 42, 2018
  • “At forsøge det umulige. Karl Ove Knausgårds kamp for at forene form og indhold,” in: Claus Elholm Andersen (ed.): Så tæt på livet som muligt. Perspektiver på Karl Ove Knausgårds ‘Min kamp’, Forlaget Spring 2017.


In January 2018, Professor Andersen was interviewed by Fox6 News.
Click below to learn about Hygge, the concept of 'pleasant togetherness'.

Your name: *
Your phone: *
Your e-mail: *
Contact Preference:
Title of Message: *
Text: *
Our company collects this data to be able to provide services to you. We process this data according to our Privacy Policy. If you consent to our usage of your data, click this checkbox.