Scandinavism: Overlapping and Competing Identities in the Nordic World, 1770-1919


Winner of the 2022 Nordic History Book Award

Despite its failure as a political mobilizer, Scandinavism as a cultural movement would have a great impact on national consciousness-raising in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden by stressing common ethnolinguistic, mythological and historical roots. This cultural vision is traced in 'the Long 19th Century’, specifically in its interactions and overlaps with the various nationally specific manifestations of cultural nationalism. Through an in-depth analysis of an extensive corpus of cultural products – ranging from novels and poetry to public commemorations, painting and street name signs – this book demonstrates that cultural Scandinavism was successful in forging a common pan-Scandinavian identity that supplemented and strengthened national-identity formation in the three nationalities it aimed to unify.

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Tim van Gerven, Ph.D. (2020), University of Amsterdam, works as a teacher of modern European history at the same university. His research focuses on European macronationalisms in comparative perspective, with a particular focus on Scandinavism, Pan-Germanism and Greater Netherlandism.
List of Figures, Graphs and Tables

Part 1: Imagining Scandinavia

1 The Mythology Debates I
The Copenhagen Question of 1800
2 The Mythology Debates II
Discord at the Geatish Society
3 The Mythology Debates III
Finnur Magnússon vs. the Baden Brothers

Part 2: Cultivating Scandinavia

4 Sociability: Creating a Scandinavian Public Sphere
5 Language: (No) Translations, Spelling Reform, and Education
6 Textual Culture: Creating a Collective Historical Identity for Scandinavia
7 Visual Culture: Perennial Brotherhood and Visual Silences
8 Performative Culture and Commemorations: Scandinavia Embodied?

Part 3: Challenging Scandinavia

9 Articulating Norwegian Identity with and against Scandinavia
10 Norwegian History for the Norwegians!
Reclaiming Norse Antiquity and the 400-Year Night
11 Appropriating Tordenskjold
On the Flexibility of Sites of Memory

Part 4: Ambient Scandinavia

12 Still Latent?
Scandinavian History in Literature High and Low
13 History in the Streets
Scandinavia at Street Level?
14 A Valkyrie in the Park
City Planning, Tourism Marketing, and Old Norse Sculpture
By Way of Conclusion
Researchers, teachers and students of nineteenth-century Scandinavian history and (Romantic) nationalism as well as those interest in cultural memory and the reception of Norse mythology.
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