Centre for Languages and Literature

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology | Lund University


I am a lecturer in Medical Humanities, specifically literature and medicine. I am employed at The Centre for Languages and Literature, while my teaching is placed at the Medical Faculty, where I teach, supervise, and contribute to develop new ways of bringing the humanities into the medical programme.

My background is in Literary Studies, where I 2010 completed my thesis, Litterära besvär. Skildringar av sjukdom i samtida svensk prosa (Literary Ills. Portrayals of Illness in Contemporary Swedish Fiction). In my further research I continue to explore literature's role within the field of Medical Humanities.

2010: Ph.D., Lund University

2006: Visiting Scholar, Department of Comparative Literature, Brown University.

2006: School of Criticism and Theory, Cornell University.

2003: M.A., Lund University.

2002: Student at Department of English, University of Hull.


About the research

I am a literary scholar and have a special interest in depictions of illness, which was the topic for my dissertation Litterära besvär ('Literary Ills', published 2010). 2017 I was appointed as lecturer in Medical Humanities, which is the first position of its kind in Sweden. The position’s concentration is towards literature and medicine, and within it I teach at the Medical Programme, supervise, research and also do some level of coordination.

My interest for the field is broad, and both in my dissertation and in the book Culture and Health – A Wider Horizon (ed. Ola Sigurdson) I have given introductory overviews of Medical Humanities and Narrative Medicine, and to some extent contributed to the establishment of them in Sweden. Presently I study autobiographical illness narratives, so called pathographies, with an emphasis on Swedish matieral, but I also continue to publish shorter literary studies. I am also interested in multi-disciplinary contexts and how literature and literary scholarship can find a place within the field.

I am a member of the steering committee of “Nordic Network for Narratives and Medicine”, part of the research group  ”Health, Art and Society”, tied to Tromsø University, and I contribute to arrangements within Medical Humanities and Narrative Medicine nationally. I have earlier worked both within history of the university and scientific publishing. Within Literary History, I was one of the editors for the volume En lundensisk litteraturhistoria ('A Lundensian Literary History'), published in connection with Lund University’s 350th anniversary. 


Books (1)
Editorships (3)
Articles (6)
Book chapters (18)
Conference contributions (2)
Reports (3)
Reviews (5)
Articles in specialist publications and popular press (5)
Newspaper articles (2)

Research portal (Lund University)

Other tasks and qualifications

Member of "Nordic Network for Studies in Narrativity and Medicine".

Member of the research group "Health, Art and Society" (HAS) at the University of Tromsø.

2011-2012 member of the editorial board of Tidskrift för litteraturvetenskap, in 2012 responsible for the review section.

I was one of the initiators that contributed to build up the project Kriterium (see during the years 2013 to 2016 as a pilot project, and I was one of Lund University's representatives during this time. I was also part of the report that laid the foundations for the work, ”Towards Quality-Controlled Open Access Monographs in Sweden" (2013), a report financed by the Swedish Research Council, Riksbankens jubileumsfond and The Royal Library.

Katarina Bernhardsson

Comparative Literature
Centre for Languages and Literature

Contact information

E-mail katarina.bernhardssonlitt.luse

Phone +46 46 222 84 66

Room H228

Visiting address Helgonabacken 12, Lund

Postal address Box 201, 221 00 Lund

Internal post code 20