Women's Activism NYC

Gunhild Tegen

1889 - 1970

By: Kam Singh | Date Added:

Gunhild Maria Elisabet Tegen, also known by her pen name Tilja, was a Swedish writer, translator, and peace activist. Born in 1889 in Njurunda, Sweden, she grew up on Alnön island and later studied at Uppsala University. In 1915, she married philosophy professor Einar Tegen and had two children. Tegen's career began as a teacher and columnist, but she later became known for her short stories and contributions to various newspapers. She published her first book, "Eros i Uppsala," in 1929 under the pen name Tor Tilja. Throughout the 1930s, she also worked as a translator to support her family, moving with her husband to Lund and then Stockholm. Inspired by the plight of Jews in Europe, Tegen wrote a film script titled "En judisk tragedi" (A Jewish Tragedy) in 1935, which highlighted their struggles. During World War II, she and her husband traveled extensively, documenting their experiences in the book "Jorden runt i krigstid" (Round the World in Wartime). In 1945, she edited "De dödsdömda vittna" (Testimonial of the Condemned), collecting accounts from Jewish refugees, particularly those from concentration camps. Tegen actively supported refugees and was involved in pacifist organizations like the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. Gunhild Tegen passed away in Stockholm in 1970, leaving behind a legacy of literary achievement and passionate advocacy for peace and human rights.

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