Nation building

Here you will find all the content related to the category 'nation building'.

Þingvellir, where Iceland was declared an independent republic on 17th June 1944, is a rich historic site and a popular tourist destination. Photo: Colourbox.

2019.09.04 | The Quick Read, Agnes Arnórsdóttir, Nation building, Governance

History of Iceland from 1944

After a referendum almost unanimously in favour, Iceland was declared an independent republic on 17th June 1944 at Þingvellir. Denmark did not, however, repeal the law which set out the terms of its personal union with Iceland until 1950. Since then, Iceland has been able to re-claim much of its cultural heritage from Danish institutions.…

Map of Iceland from 1500s by Gerard Mercator (1512-1594), a cartographer from the Netherlands, which was first published in his extensive 'atlas', completed and published by his son in the year after Mercator's death. Mercator was the first to use the word 'atlas' for a collection of maps. From: The Royal Library, The Picture Collection (CC-BY-NC-ND).

2019.08.26 | Article, Agnes Arnórsdóttir, Nation building, Region-building

History of Iceland

Iceland was a largely uninhabited island in the northern Atlantic Ocean, where Norsemen settled around 870. It began as a ‘free state’ at first but became a Norwegian province in the years 1262/64. As a dependency of Norway, Iceland came under the Danish-Norwegian Crown in 1380 and became, in reality, a Danish dependency from 1660. During the…

UN Member States were informed about Greenland's change of status from a colony to a county in 1954. Photo: Courtesy of UN publications.

2019.08.19 | Article, Simon Mølholm Olesen, Governance, Nation building

The Danish decolonisation of Greenland, 1945-54

An international discussion on decolonisation followed in the aftermath of the Second World War in the mid-1940s. The newly formed United Nations created some of the most important platforms for these discussions. Consequently, Danish politicians and civil servants feared that Greenland, the last of the Danish colonies, would attract negative…

With the stroke of a pen by their foreign minister, the Americans acknowledged Danish sovereignty to the whole of Greenland. Photo: Nicola Thomas, Unsplash.

2019.06.21 | Original sources, Nation building, Law

USA's declaration on Danish sovereignty of Greenland, 1916

On 4th August 1916, the American government issued a declaration to the Danish government that it would not raise objections if Denmark extended its interests in Greenland to include the entire island. This was perhaps surprising given the 1832 Monroe Doctrine intended to limit European colonialism. The declaration paved the way for recognition of…

Danes arriving in Flensburg from Copenhagen and elsewhere for the 1920 vote on whether the Middle Schleswig zone should be Danish or German.

2019.06.12 | Video, Nation building, Minorities

Drawing the German-Danish border: the vote in Flensburg, 1920

Go to Flensborg, Germany, in 1920 and see firsthand what it was like during the plebiscite on 14th March. Would Flensborg and central Schleswig remain German or become a new part of Denmark? Klaus Tolstrup Petersen, historian and director of the Schleswig Collection (Danish Central Library for South Schleswig), explains in Danish with English…

Poster from 1920. Picture: Drawn by Rasmus Christiansen.  Rigsarkivet (CC BY-SA 2.0).

2019.06.07 | Video, Nation building, Minorities

Drawing the German-Danish border: posters and propaganda from 1920

Go with Klaus Tolstrup Petersen, historian and director of the Schleswig Collection (Danish Central Library for South Schleswig), back to 1920 when a plebiscite was held on whether the area of northern and middle Schleswig would be Danish or German. Take a look at the many posters and propaganda that were used to try to sway voters in this film in…

Niels Simonsen's 'Tilbagetoget fra Dannevirke' [The Retreat from Dannevirke], 1864.

2019.05.01 | The Quick Read, Rasmus Glenthøj, Culture, Nation building

The meaning of the Second Schleswig War ('1864') in Denmark

Denmark lost a third of its territory and 40% of its population in the Second Schleswig War in 1864 to Prussia and Austria. Seen as both a national trauma and the creation of modern-day Denmark, narratives regarding the war that were created at the time - and since - continue to resonate, exemplified by recent debates over its portrayal in TV…

'Carl Eldhs Brantings' monument, Bellevueparken, Stockholm, Sweden (see below).

2019.02.27 | Article, Mary Hilson, Policy, Nation building

Nordic social democratic parties during the twentieth century

Social democratic parties have had a significant influence on the Nordic countries during the twentieth century, especially in Sweden. As centre-left parties closely associated with the trade union movement, social democratic policy aims have included full employment and the promotion of social justice and equality. The political influence of…

The Nordic Museum, inaugurated in 1880 in Stockholm, grew out of the Scandinavian Ethnographic Collection (www.nordiskamuseet.se).

2019.02.25 | Article, Andrew G. Newby, Education, Nation building

Nordic museums and their history

National museums in the Nordics retain an important role in the creation and maintenance of a particular view of a country, its people and often its place within the Nordics. This view is presented to both outsiders and the people themselves. In 1800s, Nordic thinkers and museums influenced the inception of national museums elsewhere at a time…

The Himlastegen - or Heaven Steps - in Katrineholm, Sweden which allowed people to safely cross the railway tracks. Photo: Taken in 1950. From a leaflet in Swedish on folkhem by www.sormlandsmuseum.se.

2019.02.25 | The Quick Read, Norbert Götz, Democracy, Nation building

Folkhem

Folkhem, literally meaning ‘people’s home’, is a Swedish term for what is otherwise designated as the Swedish welfare state or the Swedish model. It is even used and discussed in the context of the Nordic welfare state or the Nordic political model, and related ideas are prominent throughout the region (e.g. folkelighed, i.e. popular culture, in…

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