Northern Genealogies in ‘The Snow Queen’ and Frozen


  • Morten Bartnæs UiT The Arctic University of Norway



The Snow Queen, Sneedronningen, H. C. Andersen, Frozen, Genealogy, Northerness, Arctic literature


H. C. Andersen’s ‘The Snow Queen’ (1844) and its self-professed adaptation Frozen (2013) both maintain a combined focus on origins and development. I approach the two texts as narratives that explain aspects of human life by showing how they came into being – as accounts that, although not primarily historical, are still bound up with genealogical ways of thinking: how, and from what beginnings, do humans and their communities evolve? What happens in the transition from non-existence to being? In both texts, the northern setting is a requisite part of these narratives of development – in the dual sense of growth and emergence. In this article, I describe the interaction between the texts’ genealogical discourses and their northern settings. I also discuss how the two texts reflect and rephrase current and past discourses where northerness is associated with genealogical issues.

Author Biography

Morten Bartnæs, UiT The Arctic University of Norway

Morten Bartnæs is associate professor at the Department of Education at UiT The Arctic University of Norway. His previous work related to the subject of this volume includes the thesis Syv artikler om kulde og litteratur (2014) and articles on Torquato Tasso’s Il re Torrismondo and Shakespeare’s Coriolanus.



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How to Cite

Bartnæs, Morten. 2020. “Northern Genealogies in ‘The Snow Queen’ and Frozen”. Nordlit, no. 46 (December):285–302.