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2017 Freedom Pen to Elisabeth Åsbrink

2 November 2017

Elisabeth Åsbrink has been awarded the 2017 Freedom Pen Prize by the Torgny Segerstedt Foundation.

Since its establishment in 1996, the Torgny Segerstedt Foundation has annually awarded The Freedom Pen to a communicator working in the spirit of Torgny Segerstedt. Earlier recipients of the prize include Astrid Lindgren, Eva Moberg and Tom Alandh.

Elisabeth Åsbrink is an author and journalist with a background as a reporter and editor at Sveriges Television (SVT). She has published the books: “Smärtpunkten” (2009), “Och i Wienerwald står träden kvar” (2011), and “1947” (2016). Elisabeth Åsbrink is also active as a dramatist and has written the dramatic works, “Räls”, “Pojken och det sjungande trädet”, “Dr Alzheimer” and “Perkins”.

A large part of Elisabeth Åsbrink’s journalism and authorship focuses on human rights, democracy, and tolerance. She also participates extensively in social debate, and has been the Chairperson of Swedish PEN since 2017.

Elisabeth Åsbrink is awarded the Prize on the basis of the following:

“With her skilfully formed narratives, non-fiction texts, and drama, Elisabeth Åsbrink has created an echo chamber, in which European post-war conflicts, the consequences of which we are still confronting today, resound across the divide of time, and where the deeply personal becomes accessible and important to us all. For this reason Elisabeth is awarded the Torgny Segerstedt Freedom Pen for 2017.”

Torgny Segerstedt (1876-1945) was a Swedish communicator and religious historian, who above all has been remembered for his courageous and determined struggle against Nazism.


Photo: Eva Tedesjö

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