Graduate Placement

The Department of Scandinavian has an excellent track record in the placement of recent Ph.Ds in teaching and other professional positions. Dissertation topics range from medieval to modern, from the strictly literary and historical to more interdisciplinary subjects. Since 1990, Scandinavian Department students have produced the following dissertations and have been hired in the following positions:

Troy Wellington Smith, Ph.D. 2023
Dissertation: Kierkegaard and the Aesthetics of the Book
Currently: Nordic Area Reference Librarian, Library of Congress

Rue Taylor, Ph.D. 2022
Dissertation: The Varangian Guard in Literature
Currently: Video-game writer at Firaxis Games

Ida Moen Johnson, Ph.D. 2020
Dissertation: The Barn and the Beast: The Queerness of Child-Animal Figurations in Scandinavian Literature and Culture
Currently: Permanent Lecturer in Norwegian at University of Wisconsin, Madison

Christian Gullette, Ph.D. 2018
Dissertation: Challenging Swedishness: Intersections of Neoliberalism, Race, and Queerness in the Works of Jonas Hassen Khemiri and Ruben Östlund
Currently: Founder of Konsult Solutions – Nordic Business Culture Consulting, Swedish Translator

Ben Bigelow, Ph.D. 2017
Currently: Associate Professor of Scandinavian Studies, Department of German, Scandinavian, and Dutch, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities

Jenna Coughlin, Ph.D. 2017
Dissertation: Conceptions of Nature in Nynorsk Poetry: Local Language and Situated Nature Knowledge in Ivar Aasen, Olav Nygard, and Tarjei and Halldis Moren Vesaas
Currently: Assistant Professor of Norwegian, St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota

Monica Hidalgo, Ph.D. 2015
Dissertation: (Dis)orienting the Reader: Literary Impressionism and the Case of Herman Bang
Currently: Independent Scholar and Program Officer for Educational and Special Projects, American Scandinavian Foundation in New York City

Erik Schjeide, Ph.D. 2015
Dissertation: Crafting Words and Wood: Myth, Carving and Húsdrápa
Currently: Independent Scholar

Verena Hoefig, Ph.D. 2014
Dissertation: Finding a Founding Father: Memory, Identity and the Icelandic landnám
Currently: Professor , Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich

Molly Jacobs Bauer, Ph.D. 2014
Dissertation: A Most Splendid Tree’: Hákon Hákonarson and the Norwegian Royal Court as a Site of Literary Production
Currently: Independent Scholar

Benjamin Mier-Cruz, Ph.D. 2013
Dissertation: Edith Södergran’s Modern Virgin: Overcoming Nietzsche and the Gendered Narrator
Currently: Assistant Professor of Nordic Studies, Department of German, Nordic, and Slavic+ at the University of Wisconsin, Madison

Elisabeth Ida Ward, Ph.D. 2012
Dissertation: Nested Narrative: Þórðar saga hreðu and Material Engagement
Currently: Executive Director of the Los Altos History Museum

Amanda Doxtater, Ph.D. 2012
Dissertation: Pathos, Performance, Volition: Melodrama’s Legacy in the Work of Carl Th. Dreyer
Currently: Assistant Professor of Scandinavian Studies and the holder of the Barbro Osher Endowed Chair of Swedish Studies at the University of Washington

Dean Krouk, Ph.D. 2011
Dissertation: Catastrophes of Redemption: Modernism and Fascism in Norway
Currently: Professor of Nordic Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and Editor of Scandinavian Studies

Suzanne Martin, Ph.D. 2010
Dissertation: Alla människor har sin berättelse: Interculturalism, Intermediality and the Trope of Testimony in Novels by Ekman, Ørstavik and Petersen
Currently: Active as freelance Swedish-English translator

Carl Olsen, Ph.D. 2009
Dissertation: Ekphrasis and the Old Norse Shield Poem
Currently: Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Scandinavian, Gustavus Adolphus College

Nichole Sterling, Ph.D. 2008
Dissertation: The Other Side: Icelandic Identity and Foreigners in the Islendingasogur
Currently: Attorney, Cahill Gordon & Reindel

David Gantt Gurley, Ph.D. 2007
Dissertation: Meir Aaron Goldschmidt and the Poetics of Prose
Currently: Associate Professor, Department of German and Scandinavian at the University of Oregon

Kendra Willson, Ph.D. 2007
Dissertation: Icelandic Nicknames
Currently: Researcher, Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Study

Hanne Pico Larsen, Ph.D. 2006
Dissertation: Solvang, the ‘Danish Capital of America’: A Little Bit of Denmark, Disney, or Something Else
Currently: Assistant Professor, Department of Marketing, Copenhagen Business School

Merrill Kaplan, Ph.D. 2006
Dissertation: The Irruption of the Past in four texts in Flateyjarbók
Currently: Associate Professor, Departments of English and Germanic Languages and Literatures, The Ohio State University

Christopher Oscarson, Ph.D. 2006
Dissertation: Landscape and the Entangled Bird’s Eye View: Turn of the 20th Century Swedish Culture and the Ecological Imaginary
Currently: Associate Professor of Scandinavian Studies and the Associate Dean for General Education at Brigham Young University

Michael Durwin Coleman, Ph.D. 2005
Dissertation: Media(ting) Jenny Lind: Representing Celebrity in Nineteenth Century Sweden
Currently: Senior Learning and Development Consultant, Wells Fargo Wealth Management Group

Brigid Gaffikin, Ph.D. 2005
Dissertation: Fiction and Materiality in Han Christian Andersen’s Travel Writing
Currently: Freelance writer and editor

Sonia Wichmann, Ph.D. 2005
Dissertation: Truths About Women: Self-Representation as Fiction and Testimony in the Diaries of Victoria Benedictsson, Aino Kallas, and Elin Wagner
Currently: President of the Northern California Translators Association.

Valdimar Tr. Hafstein, Ph.D. 2004
Dissertation: The Making of Intangible Cultural Heritage: Tradition and Authenticity, Community and Humanity
Currently: Professor, Department of Anthropology and Folklore at the University of Iceland

Arne Lunde, Ph.D. 2003
Dissertation: Nordic Exposures: Scandinavian Whiteness and Ethnic Assimilation in Classical Hollywood Cinema.
Currently: Associate Professor, Scandinavian Section, UCLA

Stephanie Buus, Ph.D. 2002
Dissertation: Travel, Translation, and Self in Scandinavian Travel Accounts of the Napoleonic Era

Elisabeth Oxfeldt, Ph.D. 2002
Dissertation: Orientalism on the Periphery: The Cosmopolitan Imagination in Nineteenth-Century Danish and Norwegian Literature and Culture
Currently: Professor of Norwegian at the University of Oslo

Ulla Thomsen, Ulla, Ph.D. 2002
Dissertation: Familie-Tidende: A Portrayal of Danish Women’s Rights in 1871

Michael Jay Stern, Ph.D. 2000
Dissertation: Strindberg’s Encounter with Nietzsche: The Conflation of Autobiography and History
Currently: Associate Professor, Department of German and Scandinavian, University of Oregon

Ebba Filippa Segerberg, Ph.D. 1999
Dissertation: Nostalgia, Narrative, and Modernity in Swedish Silent Cinema
Currently: Director of Communications for Arts and Sciences, Washington University, St. Louis; Literary translator

Charles Maxwell Olmstead, Ph.D. 1998
Dissertation: An Introduction to Oddr Snorrason’s ‘Óláfs saga Tryggvasonar
Currently: Pastor of Higganum Congregational Church, Higganum, Connecticut since 2004.

Zoe Patrice Borovsky, Ph.D. 1994
Dissertation: Rocking the Boat: Women in Old Norse Literature
Currently: Librarian for Digital Research and Scholarship, UCLA

Monika Zagar, Ph.D. 1994
Dissertation: Ideological Clowns in the Fiction of Dag Solstad
Currently: Professor Emerita of Nordic Studies, Department of German, Nordic, Slavic, and Dutch at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities

Timothy Roland Tangherlini, Ph.D. 1992
Dissertation: Interpreting Legend: Evald Tang Kristensen’s Legend Informants and their Repertoires
Currently: Professor, Department of Scandinavian, UC Berkeley

Mark Bennion Sandberg, Ph.D. 1991
Dissertation: Missing Persons: Spectacle and Narrative in Late Nineteenth-Century Scandinavia
Currently: Professor, Department of Scandinavian and Department of Film and Media, UC Berkeley

Marianne Stecher Hansen, Ph.D. 1990
Dissertation: Thorkild Hansen and Historical Narrative: A Study of Narrative Technique in Det lykkelige Arabien and Jens Munk
Currently: Professor, Department of Scandinavian Studies, University of Washington