Sonja Åkesson

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Sonja Åkesson
Sonja Åkesson 1968.JPG
Sonja Åkesson, 1968.
Born (1926-04-19)19 April 1926
Buttle, Gotland
Died 5 May 1977(1977-05-05) (aged 51)
Occupation Poet
Known for Feminism

Sonja Åkesson (19 April 1926 – 5 May 1977) was a Swedish poet, writer, and artist born in Buttle, Gotland.[1][2]


Sonja Åkesson first discovered her talent for writing at 28 after moving to Stockholm, after her divorce from Nils Westberg, a carpenter. They had two children at the time of the divorce and Sonja was expecting a baby (not her husband’s). The baby died from leukemia at the age of two.[1]

In 1956, Sonja married Bo Holmberg and had her fourth child, Mikael.[1] The following year she published her first collection of poems: Situationer ("Situations"). In 1963 she became a household name in Sweden after publishing Husfrid. She became known for her distinct style of writing, describing daily life and commenting on society.[3] The feminist movement embraced Åkesson's work and often cited it. The most famous of her poems is probably "äktenskapsfrågan" (the question of marriage).[2] This is often referred to as "vara vit mans slav" (to be the slave of a white man) as this is repeated throughout the poem.

After nine years of marriage, she divorced Bo Holmberg in 1965. She married Jarl Hammarberg, a Swedish artist and poet, and gave birth to her fifth child, Gertie.[1] Sonja Åkesson moved to Halmstad in the 1970s after suffering from mental illness, and in 1977 she died from liver cancer.[1]


Her works include:[2]


  • Situationer (1957)
  • Glasveranda (1959)
  • Husfrid (1963)
  • Pris (1968)
  • Sagan om Siv (1974)


  • Skvallerspegel (1960)
  • Leva livet (1961)
  • Efter balen (1962)

Her manuscripts and other papers are held within the Women’s History Collections, Gothenburg University, Sweden.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Sonja Åkesson 1926–1977". Retrieved 1 May 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c Hans-Erik Johannesson. "Sonja Akesson – Poems and Biography". Poetry Connection. Archived from the original on 26 August 2011. Retrieved 1 May 2011. 
  3. ^ Håkan Sandgren (11 January 2007). Nordic Women, Symbiotic Poetry (PDF). p. 661. Retrieved 1 May 2011. 
  4. ^ Berith Backlund (8 August 2008). "Women's History Collections, Gothenburg University, Sweden – Activities 2006–2008" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 1 May 2011. 

External links[edit]