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An Interview with Elin Hofverberg, an Intern at the Law Library of Congress

This is an interview with Elin Hofverberg, currently an intern at the Law Library of Congress.  I enjoyed reading Ruth’s interview of Elin and I hope you do too.

Describe your background

I was born in the northern part of Sweden (geographically in the middle of the country) but grew up outside of Linköping (two hours south of Stockholm) in a village which is home to one of Sweden’s best chocolate manufacturers, CloettaDuring high school I participated in and graduated from the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program of my school.  This was a great experience, as it allowed me to study alongside students from Australia, Finland, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States.  After high school I moved to Uppsala to attend Uppsala UniversityDuring my final year there, I moved to Stockholm where I still permanently reside.

Photo by Kevin Long

I also lived one year in the United States as a child where I fell in love with the desert landscape and the cloudless skies of the Mojave Desert and Sonora.

What is your academic/professional history

I have a Jur.kand. (Master of Laws) from Uppsala University.  Founded in 1477, Uppsala University is the oldest University in Scandinavia.  As part of my Swedish law studies I spent a year at James E. Rogers College of Law at the University of ArizonaAfter graduating, I have continued my legal education in the United States and was recently awarded an LL.M. degree in International and Comparative Law from the George Washington University Law School.

How would you describe your job to other people?

I do legal research primarily on Swedish and “Scandinavian” laws from a United States and comparative perspective.  This includes researching statutes, case law, and bills as well as international law and European Union law.  My research is then incorporated into reports, memos or short articles depending on the project or the patron’s needs.

Why did you want to work at the Library of Congress?

My law school here in Washington, D.C. arranged a study visit to the Law Library of Congress (LLC) during the spring semester.  I was in the middle of researching five papers and I thought that the work the specialists did sounded really interesting.  I asked one of the interns of the LLC if he liked it here and what kind of work he was assigned to do.  After hearing him talk about the types of projects he was as involved in, I was convinced that the LLC was a good place to be and it did not disappoint!  I am getting lots of practice on the Bluebook citation rules, which the LLC helped revamp the table T.2 on Foreign Jurisdictions.

What is the most interesting fact you have learned about the Law Library and/or the Library of Congress?

That the Library of Congress collection was initially made up of Thomas Jefferson’s personal library and that he sold it to the United States Congress after having come to the verge of bankruptcy and faced with the choice of selling his books or his wines.   I would not mind having a similar library of my own.

What is something most of your co-workers do not know about you?

That I can put together any IKEA furniture without the instructions but cannot make good Swedish meatballs even if my life depended on it.  While abroad, I buy the frozen ones at IKEA.

Although I love movies, books are what really drain my wallet (checking account).  I guess I should give a small tribute to one of the authors who is to blame for my becoming a lawyer.  I read John Grisham’s A Time to Kill when I was 11 and here I am….  I would not say A Time to Kill is my favorite book but probably one that had the greatest effect on me.  My favorite Swedish book is Vilhelm Moberg’s Utvandrarna (The Emigrants).

 

 

One Comment

  1. Frankie
    January 13, 2012 at 8:23 am

    Great post thanks so much for sharing.

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