Levertin, Oscar (1862–1906) By Johnsson, Henrik
Oscar Levertin was born at Gryt Manor in Norrköping, Sweden. He pursued an academic career at Uppsala University, where he received his doctorate in 1888. Beginning in 1893 he taught literature and art history at Stockholm College, where he became a professor in 1899. Levertin was also employed as a literary critic, joining the daily newspaper Svenska Dagbladet in 1897. Although Levertin made his literary debut in the early 1880s, he rose to prominence as an author and critic allied with a neo-Romantic school of literature—in Swedish often simply referred to as the “ninety-ists” [“nittiotalisterna”]—a movement which defined itself through its opposition to the naturalism of the 1880s and whose most notable members included Verner von Heidenstam and Selma Lagerlöf. This assault on naturalism was launched in the pamphlet Pepitas bröllop (1890), co-authored with Verner von Heidenstam. In this essay a new aesthetic is proposed which self-consciously embraces the ideals of literary Romanticism.