1st Edition

Histories of Knowledge in Postwar Scandinavia Actors, Arenas, and Aspirations

    280 Pages
    by Routledge

    280 Pages
    by Routledge

    Histories of Knowledge in Postwar Scandinavia uses case studies to explore how knowledge circulated in the different public arenas that shaped politics, economics and cultural life in and across postwar Scandinavia, particularly in the 1960s and 1970s.

    This book focuses on a period when the term "knowledge society" was coined and rapidly found traction. In Scandinavia, society’s relationship to rational forms of knowledge became vital to the self-understanding and political ambitions of the era. Taking advantage of contemporary discussions about the circulation, arenas, forms, applications and actors of knowledge, contributors examine various forms of knowledge – economic, environmental, humanistic, religious, political, and sexual – that provide insight into the making and functioning of postwar Scandinavian societies and offer innovative studies that contribute to the development of the history of knowledge at large. The concentration on knowledge rather than the welfare state, the Cold War or the new social and political movements, which to date have attracted the lion’s share of scholarly attention, ensures the book makes a historiographical intervention in postwar Scandinavian historiography.

    Offering a stimulating point of departure for those interested in the history of knowledge and the circulation of knowledge, this is a vital resource for students and scholars of postwar Scandinavia that provides fresh perspectives and new methodologies for exploration.


    Histories of knowledge in postwar Scandinavia

    Johan Östling, Niklas Olsen, and David Larsson Heidenblad

    Part 1: The environment and global crises

    1. Nuclear fallout as risk: Denmark and the thermonuclear revolution

    Casper Sylvest

    2. Georg Borgström and the population-food dilemma: Reception and consequences in Norwegian public debate, 1950s and 1960s

    Sunniva Engh

    3. The emergence of environmental journalism in 1960s Sweden: Methodological reflections on working with digitalised newspapers

    David Larsson Heidenblad

    4. "Revolt from the center": Socio-environmental protest from idea to praxis in Denmark, 1978–1993

    Bo Fritzbøger

    Part 2: Economy, politics, and the welfare state

    5. The Galbraithian moment: Affluence and critique of growth in Scandinavia, 1958–1972

    Björn Lundberg

    6. Welfare state criticism as elite criticism in 1970s Denmark

    Niklas Olsen

    7. The entrepreneur’s dream: Credit card history between PR and academic research

    Orsi Husz

    8. State feminism revisited as lieux de savoir: Fabrics of the Scandinavian knowledge society, c. 1960–1980

    Eirinn Larsen

    Part 3: Education, culture, and the humanities

    9. The city, the church, and the 1960s: On secularisation theory and the Swedish translation of Harvey Cox’s The Secular City

    Anton Jansson

    10. Sex education and the state: Norwegian schools as arenas of knowledge in the 1970s

    Kari Hernæs Nordberg

    11. Mobilising the outsider: Crises and histories of the humanities in the 1970s Scandinavian welfare states

    Hampus Östh Gustafsson

    12. Revolting against the established book market: Book cafes as key actors within the counterpublic of the Scandinavian New Left

    Ragni Svensson


    Scandinavia: A Corporatist Model of Knowledge?

    Johan Strang


    Johan Östling is a Wallenberg Academy Fellow and the Director for the Lund Centre for the History of Knowledge (LUCK). Östling’s research encompasses the history of knowledge and modern European history. His recent publications include Humboldt and the Modern German University, Circulation of Knowledge and Forms of Knowledge.

    Niklas Olsen is an Associate Professor at the Saxo Institute and Chair of the Centre of Modern European Studies, University of Copenhagen. His research interests address European history in the twentieth century. His recent publications include The Sovereign Consumer: A New Intellectual History of Neoliberalism.

    David Larsson Heidenblad is an Associate Professor and a Deputy Director for the Lund Centre for the History of Knowledge (LUCK). He has an interest in the societal relevance of various forms of knowledge. His publications include Circulation of Knowledge and Forms of Knowledge.