Malin Alkestrand

Malin Alkestrand

Associate professor
Department of Film and Literature Faculty of Arts and Humanities
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My name is Malin Alkestrand, and I hold a Ph D in comparative literature from Lund University. I am a docent and an associate professor at Linnaeus University and my focus is educational aspects of literary fiction. 


I teach courses in children's and YA literature, the course "Harry Potter and his worlds" and courses for teachers to be. I also supervise essays within the teacher training programme and visit students when they practice teaching in schools during their education. I also hold courses for students from other countries who take courses at Linnaeus University. In addition, I am the leader for our teacher council on children's and YA literature.


During Spring 2023, I was the supervisor of eight bachelor students in children's and YA literature. In 2024, I will continue teaching students in children's and young adult literature. 


I defended my doctoral thesis on how fantasy literature can be used to discuss fundamental values such as democracy, human rights and multiculturalism in schools in September 2016. The book is called Magiska möjligheter: Harry Potter, Artemis Fowl och Cirkeln i skolans värdegrundsarbete [Magical Possibilities: Teaching Fundamental Values in Schools Using Harry Potter, Artemis Fowl and the Circle]. 

I have recently (Autumn 2021) finished a monograph project about the educational potential and challenges of using YA dystopias in schools to problematise and explore the relationship of power between the young and adults in real-life societies. The book is called Mothers and Murderers: Adults' Oppression of Children and Adolescents in Young Adult Dystopian Literature (2021) and it is published by Makadam Publishing. The target audience is both scholars of for example children's and YA literature and pedagogics, on the one hand, and teachers and trainee teachers, on the other hand. 

My new project explores YA dystopias in which the adults have disappeared either temporarily or permanently. What happens to the power relationships based on age when the adults are gone? A two minute presentation of the project is available here: Pitch Malin - LnuPlay - Linnaeus University MediaSpace

Together with Maria Nilson I am the editor of the theme issue "Conceptions of Girlhood Now and Then: 'Girls' Literature' and Beyond" in the journal Barnboken. Most of the articles are written in English. You can access the articles here: Barnboken.

More information about the book from 2021: Mothers and Murderers : Adults’ Oppression of Children and Adolescents in Young Adult Dystopian Literature – Makadam Förlag (

Here you can listen to an English language presentation of the book from the book launch on the 5th of October 2021: Book Launch, 5h of October 2021, "Mothers and Murderers" - LnuPlay - Linnaeus University MediaSpace

In this blog post I introduce my book and discuss some of the YA dystopias that I investigate in it in relationship to the Covid-19 pandemic: Mothers and Murderers in YA Dystopian Literature (


More information about me: 

  • Since Spring 2022, I am the leader for our teacher council on children's and YA literature.
  • I became a Docent on the 15th of December 2021, which is more or less the equivalent of tenure.
  • Since 2018, I am the contact person and the head for the research centre CHILLL, Centre for Childhood Research in Literature, Language and Learning.
  • Together with Helene Ehriander, I lead the research centre.
  • During the Spring of 2017, I spent four weeks as a visiting scholar at the University of Cambridge working on my dystopia project.
  • Together with Dr Christopher Owen, who holds a Ph D from Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, England, I have written an article about cognitive perspectives on middle-grade fantasy literature. It was published in the journal IRCL in July 2018.
  • Since I finished my doctoral thesis, I have continued doing research on the Harry Potter series, for example in the article below from 2020, where I analyse the reactions against the adult Harry's behaviour in the stage-play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and compare the depiction to how the young Harry is portrayed in the seven Harry Potter novels.


The leader of our teacher council in children's and YA literature.

One of two members of the leading board for Centre for Childhood Research in Literature, Language and Learning (CHILLL).

Head and contact person for CHILLL since 2018. Please visit our Facebook page for updates about the centre: Centre for Childhood Research in Literature, Language and Learning | Facebook

One of the teachers on the MOOC about fantasy literature called "Fantastic Fiction and Where to Find It". Please visit our Facebook page for updates about the MOOC: Fantastic Fiction and Where to Find It - Startsida | Facebook

The chair of the supervisor board in the literature subjects.


Article in journal (Other academic)

Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)

Chapter in book (Refereed)

Chapter in book (Other academic)

Conference paper (Refereed)

Conference paper (Other academic)

Conference paper (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))