Pippi Longstocking: The invention of a heroine

Pippi Longstocking was invented by Astrid Lindgren in the winter of 1941 for her sick seven-year-old daughter Karin. The daughter was then in bed with pneumonia and longed for a change.

But Pippi Longstocking was brought to paper only three years after her invention by Astrid Lindgren. This was originally not planned, but the author had sprained one foot and could not leave the bed, just like her daughter did. So she picked up pen and paper and wrote down the story of Pippi Longstocking. She then gave the manuscript to her daughter Karin for her tenth birthday.

However, the manuscript of Pippi Longstocking, which Astrid Lindgren sent to the Swedish publisher Bonnier, was initially rejected. In 1944 she won with another book "Britt-Mari makes her heart" the publisher Rabén & Sjörgen the second prize of a tender, then revised the Pippi Longstocking text and won in 1945 with the red-haired protagonist even the first prize. On September 13, 1945 Pippi Longstocking – and later many other works by Astrid Lindgren – was published by the publisher.

Actually Astrid Lindgren wrote only three novels to Pippi Longstocking. These were: Pippi Longstocking, Pippi Longstocking on board and Pippi in Taka-Tuka Country. The clever division of the novels, in the first novel, two adventures were already included and in the second novel, the nine chapters were so independent that they could appear as their own stories. This facilitated the filming and gave many the impression that they were many different novels about Pippi Longstocking.

On the 100th birthday of Astrid Lindgren, the first manuscript of Pippi Longstocking's "Ur-Pippi" was published. Astrid Lindgren, not only known to all children, has made a name for herself in the world of literature with her memorable stories about Pippi Longstocking and the children of Bullerbü.

Pippi Longstocking was filmed by the director Olle Hellbom in the years 1968 to 1970. To this day, most people, when they hear Pippi Longstocking, remember the popular theme song "Hey, Pippi Longstocking!".

The stories of Pippi Longstocking were broadcast on German television in a total of 21 episodes. The Swedish film adaptation of Pippi, however, has only 13 episodes.

Picture credits: photophonie / stock.adobe.com

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