History of Fatherhood - Were we more equal in the 19th century than we are today?

 What does it mean to be a father? How have fathers treated their offspring in the past 150 years and how has their own, as well as society’s attitude towards being a father developed?


Jørgen Lorentzen is a professor of Gender Studies and is, as he says, the only scholar who is focused on men’s studies in Norway, and possibly in all of Europe. On Thursday, November 19th at 6pm, in UK Parobrod, Lorentzen will hold the lecture “History of Fatherhood”, organized by Scandinavian corner. The lecture will contain many surprising revelations, as well as confirmations of existing views on the father’s role in the family. It will provide a good foundation for understanding why fathers today act as they do and how their role in the family has changed over the centuries.

Lorentzen suggests that men and women in the 19th century were more equal than the ones in the 20th century in many aspects. During the 20th century a significant change took place which almost completely removed the fathers from the family household. In his lecture, Jørgen will explain why he is critical of idealizing the 1950s as the period of stability and harmony, why young men who grew up in the 1970s and 1980s are emotionally distant, and what similarities we can find between the 19th century fathers and the 1970s feminist.

He will also talk about the father’s role in today’s society and discuss some of the problematic arrangements in the modern family, such as parental leave for men.

Jørgen Lorentzen is a professor of Gender Studies, president of the Hedda Fondation, and a producer in the production company Integral Film AS. He has been involved in a number of projects within his areas of expertise and is acknowledged as one of the most important scholars on men and masculinity in the world. In addition, he used to be the president of TheNorwegian Non-Fiction Writers and Translators Association (NFF) and Reform – Resource Center for Men. Lorentzen has written a lot on men and masculinity for different medias in Norway as well as abroad. He has also published several books on the same topic - Masculinity: A view of the man in literature andfilms (2004), Men in the Nordic Countries (2008), History of Fatherhood in Norway (2012) and produced several documentaries.


The project ‘Nordic Reading Corner’ is financially supported by The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Belgrade www.norveska.org.rs