This book takes a fresh approach to one of the most popular cultural symbols of modernity in the 1920s—the "masculine" modern woman. Uncovering discourses on female masculinity in interwar Sweden, a nation that struggled to become modern but not decadent, this study examines cultural representations and debates across several arenas including fashion, film, sports, automobility, medicine and literature. Drawing on rich empirical material, this book traces not only how the masculine modern woman reshaped the imaginary space of what women could be, do and desire, but also how this space was eventually shrunk in order to fit into an emerging vision of a family-oriented "people’s home."

chapter |32 pages


part I|65 pages

Telling Stories

chapter 1|31 pages

The M Word

Modern or Masculine?

part II|90 pages

Changing Stories

chapter 3|40 pages

“What We Have Learned from Our Sporting Ladies”

Making Sense of the Female Athlete

chapter 4|48 pages

The Chauffeuse Who Wished for a Racecar

Stories of Masculinized Women Behind the Wheel

part III|65 pages

Unfinished Stories

chapter 5|26 pages

In No Certain Terms

Female Masculinities and Queer Desires

chapter 6|28 pages

The Desire to Desire

The Masculine Modern Woman in Fiction

chapter |9 pages