Histories of Public Diplomacy and Nation Branding in the Nordic and Baltic Countries

Representing the Periphery


Histories of Public Diplomacy and Nation Branding in the Nordic and Baltic Countries provides an historical perspective on public diplomacy and nation branding in the Nordic and Baltic countries from 1900 to the present day. It highlights continuity and change in the efforts to strategically represent these nations abroad, and shows how a self-understanding of being peripheral has led to similarities in the deployed practices throughout the Nordic-Baltic region.

Edited by Louis Clerc, Nikolas Glover and Paul Jordan, the volume examines a range of actors that have attempted to influence foreign opinions and strengthen their country’s political and commercial position. Variously labelled propaganda, information, diplomacy and branding, these constant efforts to enhance the national image abroad have affected how the nation has been imagined in the domestic context.

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Louis Clerc, Ph.D. (2007), University of Turku, is a Senior Lecturer in Contemporary History. He has published on the history of international relations, with an emphasis on Franco-Nordic relations. He is currently researching Finnish and Nordic public and cultural diplomacy.

Nikolas Glover, Ph.D. (2011) Stockholm University, is a post-doctoral researcher at the Department of Economic History, Uppsala University. He is the author of National Relations: Public Diplomacy, National Identity and the Swedish Institute 1945–1970 (2011).

Paul Jordan, Ph.D. (2011), University of Glasgow, is the author of The Modern Fairy Tale: Nation Branding, National Identity and the Eurovision Song Contest in Estonia (2014). His research interests include nation branding and nationalism in the post-Soviet space.


Representing the Small States of Northern Europe: Between Imagined and Imaged Communities
PART I. 1918–45: War and International Order
1. The Nationalisation of Swedish Enlightenment Activities Abroad: Civil Society Actors and Their Impact on State Politics
2. Open Diplomacy and Minority Rights: The League of Nations and Lithuania’s International Image in the early 1920s
3. Countering “the Obtuse Arguments of the Bolsheviks”: Estonian Information Work in Sweden, the United States and Britain, 1940–4
PART II. 1945–89: Cold War, Diplomacy, Trade, and Culture
4. The Office for Cultural Relations: Representing Norway in the Post-War Period
5. A Public Diplomacy Entrepreneur: Danish Ambassador Bodil Begtrup in Iceland, Switzerland and Portugal, 1949–73.
6. A Total Image Deconstructed: The Corporate Analogy and the Legitimacy of Promoting Sweden Abroad in the 1960s
7. “Gaining Recognition and Understanding on her own terms”: The Bureaucracy of Finland’s Image Policy, 1948–66
8. American Mirrors and Swedish Self-Portraits: US Images of Sweden and Swedish Public Diplomacy in the USA in the 1970s and 80s
PART III. Post-Cold War: Globalisation and Transnational Markets
9. Diplomacy and Diasporas, Self-Perceptions and Representations: Baltic Attempts to Promote Independence, 1989–91
10. Walking in Singing: Brand Estonia, the Eurovision Song Contest and Estonia’s Self-Proclaimed Return to Europe, 2001–2.
11. Public Diplomacy vs Nation Branding: the Case of Denmark after the Cartoon Crisis
12. Benevolent Assistance and Cognitive Colonisation: Nordic Involvement with the Baltic States since the 1990s
Small-State Identities: Promotions Past and Present

All interested in the foreign policies and national identities of the Nordic and Baltic countries, and anyone concerned with the history of cultural relations, propaganda, public diplomacy and nation branding.
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