More than 50 people came to listen to Anders Dybelius in the JMW hall at the University Library at Jönköping University.

JU LIVE: “Just sit back and enjoy”

Anders Dybelius, Assistant Professor at the School of Education and Communication (HLK) at Jönköping University (JU), was the first in this year's round of the JU LIVE lecture series in the University Library on 29 February.

“This is a very nice context, and I am very grateful that so many people were here and listened,” says Anders Dybelius.

Anders Dybelius at JU LIVE.

Anders Dybelius explained during the lecture that Swedish Lieutenant General Georg Carl von Döbeln wore a black headband after having his frontal bone fractured by a gunshot wound. He became known as the “black band” among his soldiers.

More than 50 people came to the JMW hall in the University Library for Anders Dybelius’ lecture: "The Lieutenant General who saved Sweden when the Russians came." He talked about when Russia attacked Sweden without warning in 1808 and how Lieutenant General Georg Carl von Döbeln played a crucial role in saving Sweden as a nation. Anders Dybelius thinks that JU LIVE is a good showcase for JU and its research.

“Even if the people who come here are not prospective students, they may have children or grandchildren to whom they can pass on the word that JU seems to be a nice university. In these contexts, I try to keep a more personalized lecture style to give the story an edge. Here, the audience should just sit back and enjoy,” he says.

Never lost a battle

Anders Dybelius chose the theme of the lecture against the background of Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine.

“What we don't realize is that Putin has been waging war since he came to power in 2000. It is therefore important to remind ourselves of how history has looked in relation to our eastern neighbour in the past. For example, Gotland was Russian in 1808 for a short time, but we managed to take it back,” says Anders Dybelius.

Georg Carl von Döbeln has gone down in history as the military leader who never lost a battle. He is described as a person who kicked upwards and had a good eye for his soldiers. He was also highly respected among Swedish soldiers for always being in the front line.

“He was known as the "black band" because he always wore a black headband after being shot in the forehead and having his skull cracked. Several soldiers said when they saw him: ‘If the black band is there, we will win’,” says Anders Dybelius.

Threats and pressure

What similarities does Anders see between Russia's war against Sweden in 1808 and against Ukraine in 2022?

“The simple answer is “attack without warning”. “This can't happen,” many people in Ukraine probably thought. Sweden thought the same thing in 1808. I don't think the risk of war against Sweden is imminent, but we cannot ignore the fact that we are exposed to Russian threats and pressure through both cyber-attacks and disinformation campaigns.

In his lecture, Anders Dybelius wanted to tell the historical story of the turbulent political period, with a coup d'état and a new form of government in 1809, in the midst of a burning war and invasion of Sweden. He also hoped that the audience would absorb the story of the colourful Lieutenant General Georg Carl von Döbeln. It seems to have worked just fine. Among the audience were married couple Rolf Borén and Annika Karlborg, Jönköping, and they were very pleased with what they heard.

"He was fantastic"

“I have never been interested in history, but this was fantastic. He gave a colourful and detailed account of von Döbeln that was easy to listen to,” says Annika Karlborg.

“What you read about in school was just a bunch of dates and regents, which you have long since forgotten. This, on the other hand, was a natural and vivid story and you really saw that von Döbeln in front of you,” says Rolf Borén.

They were recommended the lecture by good friends and mentioned that it was probably not the last time they came to JU LIVE.

The next lecturer at JU LIVE is Yashar Mahmud, a postdoctoral researcher at the School of Health and Welfare at JU, who on 21 March will talk about how a unique project in Småland improves care for elderly deaf people.

Read more about that and register here Opens in new window.

JU LIVE at Jönköping University.

The married couple Rolf Borén and Annika Karlborg, Jönköping, both thought that Anders Dybelius was a fantastic storyteller and that he illustrated Georg Carl von Döbeln in a very good way.


Anders Dybelius chose the theme of the lecture against the background of Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine.


Muhamed Alfatlawy described Anders Dybelius’ lecture as instructive and interesting.