Christer Lindberg





  • Theory of Anthropology
  • Visual Anthropology
  • Shamanism and Anthropology of Religion

I am a senior professor and head of the undergraduate as well as the Ph.D. program at the Department of Social Anthropology at Lund University in Sweden as well as associate professor of comparative religion at the Turku University in Finland.

A substantial part of my research has been carried out in collaboration or with assistance from scholars in history, archaeology, ethnology, sociology, and art, as well as with museum curators. My doctoral thesis presented the life and career of the ethnographer (and pioneering anthropologist) Erland Nordenskiöld is in the field of the history of anthropology. While the focus is on the history of ideas, I have in the thesis as well as in various essays and articles preferred the biographical method which traces the formation and transformation of ideas through their transmissions in the social networks of the scholarly community.

The “Swedish” and the “Nordic School” of anthropology has also been analyzed in a number of articles dealing with important scholars such as Nordenskiöld, Walter Kaudern, Rafael Karsten, and Edward Westermarck. Other prominent anthropologists that figured in my writings concerning the history of anthropology are Lewis Henry Morgan, James G. Frazer, Franz Boas, Paul Radin, Marcel Mauss, and Claude Lévi-Strauss, thus reflecting my particular interest in American, French, and British anthropology and dealing with both historical and a-historical traditions in anthropology.


The importance of American anthropology for the development of the discipline is as well an important background for my interest in Native American cultures. Den Gode och den Onde Vilden (“The Noble and Ignoble Savage”) is a book dealing with the historical importance of the European encounter with the New World as focal point for the development of discourses about noble and ignoble savages, while I Lönnlövets Skuga  (“In the Shadow of the Maple Leaf”) by contrast deals with contemporary issues in the relationship between the Canadian nation state and its indigenous peoples.

Perhaps closest to mainstream trends in social anthropology is my interest in popular culture as reflected in a book on Bob Marley and an essay offering a structural analysis of Clint Estwood's "High Plains Drifter." As some of my other writings, the book on Marley is geared to a broader market, but it is anthropologically informed and places the musician's reggae music in the context of world music. In addition to my writings I work with photography – teaching visual anthropology, having exhibits in Malmö and Lund, and publishing a number of photo books including Parisian serenade (2009) and The Green Heart (2012).

Recent research outputs

Christer Lindberg, 2019, Transco-Script. 160 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Christer Lindberg, 2018 May 5, Ursprungsfolkens religioner – perspektiv på kontinuitet och förändring. Hall, E. & Liljefors Persson, B. (eds.). Föreningen lärare i religionsvetenskap, Vol. 49. p. 108-127 20 p. (Årsbok; vol. 49).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapter

Christer Lindberg, 2017 Jan 27, Malmö: Transco-Script. 120 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBook

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