Steven Hartman is Professor of English Literature at Mid Sweden University. His translation of collected short stories by Swedish writer Stig Dagerman, Sleet, was published by David R. Godine in 2013.


To Kill a Child

Öland, Sweden, 1959

For a meager fee of seventy-five kronor Stig Dagerman was commissioned by Sweden’s National Society for Road Safety to write a cautionary tale as part of a campaign designed to get Swedish motorists to slow down on highways. What could have been an ephemeral and gimmicky work of public service fiction became perhaps the greatest short short story in the history of Swedish letters.