22. ilb 07. - 17.09.2022

Johan Palmberg

Portrait Johan Palmberg
© The Astrid Lindgren Company

Johan Palmberg was born in 1990. He is a great-grandson of Astrid Lindgren (1907–2002) and manages the rights to her works, primarily with regard to adaptations, dramatizations, and translations. He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the university in Uppsala, where he focused on theories for the fair distribution of resources.
Since 2009, he has worked for the family business, the Astrid Lindgren Company, which until recently operated under the name of Saltkråkan AB. Palmberg is also a member of the jury for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, which has been awarded since 2003 and is the highest endowed prize for children’s and young adult literature worldwide. As he said in an interview, it was not only Lindgren’s own books that interested him, but also those that she helped to publish when she was an editor, and her enormous private library was also a bottomless source of fascination for him. The modest and politically engaged grande dame of Swedish children’s literature is not only extraordinarily popular in her home country, but is one of the most-translated authors ever, with her oeuvre available in over 100 languages. In light of the tonal, wordplay-filled names and invented words, this always requires a spirit of linguistic creativity. With »Ronja Rövardotter« (1981; Eng. »Ronia, the Robber’s Daughter«, 1985), Lindgren created one of her most iconic and strong-willed heroines – after Pippi Longstocking, Bill Bergson, or Emil of Lönneberga – who wins over young readers with her authenticity and courage as well as her independent and peaceful nature. In addition to the candid character descriptions, this late work of Lindgren’s charms the reader with its narrative energy and versed infiltrations of generic tropes wonderfully complemented with pictures by the illustrator Ilon Wikland. Other reasons for the enduring popularity of the book may be the timelessness of the conflicts that are resolved and the open attitude towards possible expansions of meanings and contemporary connections, as proven by the international adaptations for the stage, the film adaptation by Tage Danielsson (1984), and an anime series by Studio Ghibli. The German translation has meanwhile reached its 44th print run.
The admitted music enthusiast Johan Palmberg has also released the self-produced piano EP »Pretend« under the pseudonym Johan Nyman (2013).