"Att blotta vem jag är" : Släktnamnsskick och släktnamnsbyten hos samer i Sverige 1920–2009

Sammanfattning: The aim of this thesis is to describe surname patterns and changes of surname among the Sami of Sweden. It presents the results of three studies. The first is a survey of the present-day stock of surnames (family names) among the Sami community, based on the 2005 electoral register for the Swedish Sami Parliament. It investigates the proportions of names deriving from different languages, and the commonest names in each group. The same study was carried out for different areas, showing that the northernmost parts of Sweden have a Sami name stock significantly different from that of the majority population. Further south, the stock of names is less marked, but no area is without Sami elements. The second study, based on archival material, concerns changes of name by Swedish Sami to newly formed surnames, over the period 1920–2004. It examines not only the names adopted, but also the ones replaced; how the name stock has been affected by different patterns of name change; and, as far as possible, who the name changers were. The study shows that, for a long time, names derived from Sami and Finnish were replaced with names formed from Swedish. This may be largely because of the stigma once attached to Sami ethnicity. More recently, Sami-language names seem to have been retained to a greater extent, possibly owing to the improved status of the culture. The third study looks at name changes in favour of names marked as Sami in character. The data consist in part of archive materials, but above all of interviews with three Sami informants who have themselves adopted Sami-language surnames. This study presents the informants’ thoughts on ethnicity and changes of name. In addition to the author’s own studies, the thesis includes a review of earlier research on Sami surnames, hereditary and non-hereditary, and a list of individual surnames with literature references regarding their origins and meanings. In the thesis, name changes are studied as a single, overall process, with an emphasis on the role of names in society, in particular as ethnic markers.