Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson was a pioneer of Swedish prison library facilities.
Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson grew up within a medical family in Norrköping. Her mother, Anna-Clara Romanus-Alfvén, was one of the earliest female doctors in Sweden, having gained her medical degree as early as 1906. Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson’s father, Johannes Alfvén – brother of the composer Hugo Alfvén – was also a doctor. He worked at Norrköpings Centralfängelse (central prison). Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson’s brother, Hannes Alfvén, was a recipient of the Nobel prize. In 1940 Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson married the journalist Edov Eriksson. They had two children together, named Gudrun and Mikael.
Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson gained her Bachelor’s degree at Stockholm university in 1940. Although she briefly worked as a journalist the majority of her professional life involved being a librarian. In 1947 she completed the Skolöverstyrelsen (Swedish national educational agency) librarianship course and then became employed at Norrköping city library.
Following the death of her husband Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson moved to Stockholm. There she was appointed head librarian of Danderyd public library. During this time she also taught at the Skolöverstyrelsen librarian school and began to write reviews of children’s- and youth-literature for the Dagens Nyheter newspaper. From 1971–1973 Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson served as consultant to the Kriminalvården (Swedish prison service) project on the provision of reading material within prisons. Her role as consultant had a major impact on the project as well as on her own development. Following her retirement Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson moved to Lund, where her children lived. She began doctoral work in the department of literature at Lund university. In 1986 she defended her thesis entitled Brottslingen – villebråd eller medmänniska?: bilden av brottslingen i svensk barn- och ungdomslitteratur mellan åren 1945 och 1975. This was an innovative and path-breaking study which serves as a recurring point of reference within children’s literature studies.
Anne-Marie Alfvén Eriksson died in 2009.