• Sweden edition
 
Status-savvy Swedish parents pick child names for success: study

Status-savvy Swedish parents pick child names for success: study

Published: 03 May 2011 16:51 GMT+02:00
Updated: 03 May 2011 16:51 GMT+02:00

Parents today are not only choosing a name for their child, but are working to position themselves and their children in the social sphere, a doctoral thesis presented by Emilia Aldrin this week shows.

In today’s society, a name has become a brand.

“Traditional or modern: Nils or Neo? Common or original: Emma or Elda? Practical or aesthetic: Ville or Whilliam? Swedish, foreign or international: Love, Logan or Lucas? These are some of the social decisions that parents today have to make,” said Emilia Aldrin in a statement.

In her thesis "Naming as a social act: Parents' choices of first names and discussions of first names in Göteborg 2007–2009" Aldrin has studied how 600 parents in the greater Gothenburg area have come to decide on the name of their babies.

She has come to the conclusion that parents create a family image by choosing different types of names, different spellings, who they are inspired by in their choice of names, and how they speak about these choices.

But it isn’t just the parents’ identity that is reflected in the name – it is also the foundation of the child’s identity. According to Aldrin, many parents take this into account when choosing a name.

They may choose a name that feels right for the performing arts, for an international career, or for simply blending in within the society in which they live.

Vilda and Lyon were deemed suitable names for an artistic performer. William was deemed a promising CEO name and Henry would suit a Nobel Prize winner.

“The choice of name tells us something of who the parents are -but also about what future they are imagining for the child,” Aldrin said.

The study showed that older parents, with a higher level of education and who live in detached houses were more likely to be traditional in their choice of names.

Younger parents, with a less advanced level of education and who were living in apartments tended to go for more creative names.

Parents of boys more often went for foreign names or names of relatives, while parents of girls chose Swedish names and names that were more aesthetically pleasing.

Rebecca Martin (rebecca.martin@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

17:24 May 3, 2011 by Rishonim
There goes my friend's children's chances of amounting to anything. A few of them has named their kids

Torgny

Sixten

Märta

Ingun

Ebbe

Conrad

Gerd
17:30 May 3, 2011 by Swedesmith
Osama is available now.
17:39 May 3, 2011 by jackx123
haha swedesmith you were jumping ahead here. who the F**k would think that an obama would be the most powerful man in the world.......
23:23 May 3, 2011 by Frogodo
@jack Obama is his last name...
15:20 May 8, 2011 by planet.sweden
The Swedes are becoming more status obsessed and hierarchical with each passing year, but naming your son with the view that one day he may become a CEO is a record that perhaps only the Chinese or Japanese can match. Truly sad.
Today's headlines
Thunderstorms replace Swedish heatwave
The Viking Lines ferry pictured was ripped away from the dock as a result of the storm. Per Gustavsson / TT

Thunderstorms replace Swedish heatwave

UPDATED: The Swedish summer was brought to a halt on Sunday as thunderstorms caused chaos in Stockholm with further inclement weather forecast for the week ahead. READ  

Cops looking for dead woman's partner
Police carry out a technical examination following the discovery of a woman's dead body in Ystad on July 26th 2014. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Cops looking for dead woman's partner

Police in southern Sweden are eager to speak to the partner of a 43-year-old woman who was found dead in an apartment on Saturday. Elsewhere in the south a 26-year-old man was arrested in Malmö on suspicion of carrying out a string of shootings. READ  

Gaza crisis delaying case of murdered child
Protesters gather in Malmö for a pro-Gaza demonstration on July 26th 2014. Stig-Åke Jönsson / TT

Gaza crisis delaying case of murdered child

The ongoing conflict in the middle east is delaying the investigation into the death of an 8-year-old girl who was found dead in Sweden in May. Meanwhile, over a 1,000 people attended a pro-Gaza march in Malmö. READ  

Politician reported for selling 'negro ball'
A selection of Swedish chocolate balls. Leif R Jansson/TT

Politician reported for selling 'negro ball'

UPDATED: The Afro-Swedish national association has reported Swedish politician Eva Sidekrans to the police for selling chocolate balls labelled as "old fashioned unprejudiced negro ball" saying it incites racial hatred. She has since apologized. READ  

'Dead' Swede's damages claim killed off

'Dead' Swede's damages claim killed off

A 36-year-old woman in central Sweden who was listed as deceased by the tax office has lost her claim for damages after the Chancellor of Justice rejected her demand for compensation. READ  

Five dead in 'black Friday' drownings
A life ring pictured in Stockholm. Maja Suslin/TT

Five dead in 'black Friday' drownings

Five people died in drowning related incidents on Friday, further raising the death toll of those lost in the water in July. READ  

Swedes insist EU prioritize environment

Swedes insist EU prioritize environment

An EU public opinion poll released on Friday revealed that Sweden is the only nation which thinks the environment should be a top priority for the union. READ  

Police turn blind eye to Swedish 'slave trade'
File photo: TT

Police turn blind eye to Swedish 'slave trade'

Police in Gothenburg have confirmed that sex trafficking in the city has developed into a full-blown slave trade - but that they lack the resources to do anything about it. READ  

Pirate Bay inmate claims religious persecution
Photo: TT/The Missionary Church of Kopimism

Pirate Bay inmate claims religious persecution

Peter Sunde has complained that his religious rights have been impinged after he was refused permission to meet a representative of a church inspired by the keyboard shortcuts for cut and paste. READ  

Stockholm 'bomb man' jailed and deported
Police at the scene of the threat in June. Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

Stockholm 'bomb man' jailed and deported

The 43-year-old man who threatened Stockholm's Gamla Stan with a bomb in June was sentenced on Friday to two years in jail, followed by deportation. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Top ten Swedish taboos
Society
Seven-year-old Swede cycles to Berlin
Politics
'Gaza conflict needs help, not empty rhetoric'
Society
Swedes voted 'most beautiful' in the Nordics
Business & Money
Sweden demands EU clarity on Bitcoin tax
Blog updates

24 July

Sharing our Pride: Celebrating Love & the LGBT Community! (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"It’s mid- July in Stockholm, and with much of the city on vacation, things can seem a little quiet – the streets, the bus, and the grocery store. One thing that has not paused for a summer break, though, is preparation for Stockholm’s Pride Festival, which will take place from July 28 to August 2...." READ »

 

22 July

Det (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! “Det” is a personal pronoun that can be used in many ways, and it might me confusing if you always translate “det” to English “it”. In this article I will do my best to guide you to how to use “det”. Det replacing a word, a phrase or a clause Let us begin with the less confusing..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Swedish organic sales enjoy 'amazing' growth
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT
Society
What's On in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching July 23
National
Swedish cops elect not to shoot 'angry elks'
Business & Money
New alcohol retail rules threaten micro-breweries
Gallery
People-watching Båstad
Business & Money
Sweden falls to third in global innovation index
Society
Swedish ornithologists keep webcam watch
Photo: Andreas Nordström/Image Bank Sweden
Gallery
Top ten Swedish beach hot spots
Tech
Swedish Wiki vet sets new content record
Photo: Fastighetsbyrån
Lifestyle
In Pictures: The Local's Property of the Week
Photo: Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching July 15-16
Photo: Ola Ericson/Image Bank Sweden
Society
What's On in Sweden
Photo: Lisa Mikulski
National
Hope springs eternal for expat pet shop owner
Gallery
Princess Estelle steals limelight at mum's birthday
National
Swedes risk infants' lives by covering up prams
National
Swede runs for office just using Bitcoin funds
Gallery
People-watching July 11-13
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

723
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se