Ebba Theorin-Kolare was an author, a journalist and a successful editor-in-chief.
Ebba Theorin-Kolare was born in Tjäby, Halland in 1891. She married three times. The first time was in 1922 when she married the author Per Freudenthal. The second time was in 1931 when she married Harry Kolare – and it was as Ebba Theorin-Kolare that she became known. Her last and final marriage was to the artist Arthur Ahlin, which began in 1946, but it appears to have been short-lived.
Ebba Theorin-Kolare began her professional career as a journalist for the daily press. After gaining her school-leaving certificate from Tekla Åberg’s advanced school for girls in Malmö in 1909, she began to work as a journalist for Sydsvenska Dagbladet, also in Malmö, that autumn. She stayed there for ten years. Ebba Theorin-Kolare’s career within women’s magazines, which continued until the 1950s, began when she was appointed assistant editor-in-chief in 1919 for the weekly journal Idun in Stockholm. In 1924 she became the editor of the more widely read weekly journal Husmodern and stayed there until her retirement in 1951.
Margareta Berger’s Fruar & Damer, 1974, describes Ebba Theorin-Kolare as an unusual editor: she appears to have shown no interest in interior decorations, recipes, or fashion. Nevertheless, magazine sales increased. Her strength as editor-in-chief of Husmodern seems to instead have lain in forming a close relationship with the readers even though she herself rarely contributed to the journal articles. Under her leadership co-habitation and the roles of husband and wife became significant themes in the magazine. In an interview with Expressen in March 1951, just before she retired, Ebba Theorine-Kolare explained that the evolution of Husmodern during her time as editor had contributed to expanding its readers’ frames of reference – a love of handmade goods and beefsteak now also included a love for humankind in general. At the same time she emphasised the continued significance of the magazine as an organ of the trade union.
Ebba Theorine-Kolare was also active as an author. Her books can be viewed as collections of essays or reasoning texts and as they discussed polemic topics such as masculinity and femininity they did not always achieve consensus amongst critics. Women sometimes found her books amusing, or as Ven Nyberg, using the name Vogue, commented in Svenska Dagbladet on Mannen som du gav mig, 1937: “a book which many gentlemen are certainly irritated by, without having read it of course, because it simply must be one of those ‘man-hater’ books”. Vogue insisted that it wasn’t in the least “filled with hate”. Ebba Theorin-Kolare wrote around ten books while she served as editor of Husmodern, startint with Kvinnan och det lyckliga livet, 1934, to Jag och du: illustrationer till känslornas historia, 1950. She was also the editor of a book published by Husmodern entitled Allt om äktenskapet, 1934, with contributions from 26 authors.
Ebba Theorin-Kolare died in 1953.