NOTE: this program has already occurred, information is for portfolio purposes only
This is an interdisciplinary study abroad program exploring how Sweden’s advancement of human rights continues to influence global human rights norms and wield enormous influence internationally. Through the lens of Sweden as a “norm entrepreneur” country, students will examine Sweden’s innovative human rights policies on LGBTI rights and gender equality. Additionally, the program will introduce students to Swedish authors and filmmakers whose work has reached beyond the Nordic borders with global impact.
The program will be based in the city of Stockholm, with excellent transportation options to the surrounding areas and abundant opportunities for learning beyond the classroom. Housing will be in a centrally located hostel, with two students per room. Breakfast is provided at the hostel and a communal kitchen is available for meal preparation.
Program Course Description
Honors 233: Sweden: World Leader in Diplomacy and Human Rights
Dr. Elise Carlson-Rainer
This course examines Sweden’s role as a global leader in human rights. Although Sweden is a small country, it wields disproportionate power internationally in shaping human rights norms. Given that small nations are more vulnerable to international instability, leaders in Sweden demonstrate how international development and peace efforts are important for long-term national interest and security. As the United States withdraws from leadership in human rights international fora, Northern European nations are poised to take on the leadership mantle of human rights and other global policy issues.
Specifically, Sweden is a pioneer in LGBTI rights, both domestically and internationally. Participants in this course will gain exposure to Sweden’s unique feminist foreign policy and its history of laying the foundation for global rights.
Set in Stockholm, the anchor of this course will be Stockholm Pride 2019. Stockholm Pride events are some of the most dynamic, robust and comprehensive LGBTI political events in the world. Far more than a one-day parade, activists come from all over the world to engage politically on LGBTI rights. Transnational advocacy groups from Zagreb, Warsaw, and St. Petersburg, for example, come to Stockholm and present their current work, exchange ideas, and share challenges in their home countries in the fight for equality. During the week-long Pride event, advocates discuss ways for leaders to elevate their cause in formal diplomatic channels and informal transnational networks. Discussions and public forums cover, for example, new fascism in Europe and Putin’s anti-gay policies; European parliament election results; and LGBTI asylum policies across the continent. Stockholm’s Pride week is a lightning rod for public engagement and debate on national and international LGBTI rights. By observing this public discourse, students will gain exposure to cutting-edge debates, learn advocacy techniques, and explore visions of long term equality goals of the global movement.
Honors 213: Swedish Literary Icons and Rebels, 5 credits (I&S, “W”)
This course will introduce students to Swedish authors and filmmakers whose work has reached beyond the Nordic borders. Students will visit works by Stieg Larsson, Selma Lagerlöf, Ingmar Bergman, Jonas Khemiri, and Katarina Taikon among others. Students will begin to examine the relationship of these artists’ works to Sweden’s approach to activism and rights broadly.
Selected works will be contextualized through site visits and excursions in Stockholm and the surrounding areas. Learning will be enhanced through guest lectures by leading academics in the field of literary studies. Students will reflect on the literature’s power to contribute to social movements and the conversation of rights. Through literary tours, students will gain first hand exposure to primary sources and original locations that inspired these important texts. This course will encourage students to consider how cultural preconceptions can confront and (re)shape the way one responds to place.
HONORS 384: Knowing Nobel (I&S/VLPA, Honors Interdisciplinary), 2 credits
Kim Kraft & Elise Carlson-Rainer
The Nobel Center in Stockholm provides an excellent base for learning more about the Nobel Prize and those who are honored for their achievements contributing to “the greatest benefit to mankind” which Alfred Nobel expressed in his will. Students will critically assess whether the Nobel Prize achieves its goal of inspiring people to seek out knowledge, to question, and to understand and improve our world. This course will take an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the Nobel Prize, and its relationship to human rights. Students will select one laureate, and research the impact of their work. Students will visit the Nobel Center in Stockholm and explore questions around creativity and innovation.
Kim Kraft and Dr Elise Carlson-Rainer
Location: Stockholm, Sweden and surrounding areasDates: Summer B Term 2019: July 23 to Aug. 20, 2019Courses: HONORS 233, HONORS 213, AND HONORS 384.