The other Europe? : Scandinavian intellectuals and the fragility of democracy in the wake of World War II

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http://hdl.handle.net/10138/309996

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Strang , J 2019 , ' The other Europe? Scandinavian intellectuals and the fragility of democracy in the wake of World War II ' , Journal of Modern European History , vol. 17 , no. 4 , pp. 500-518 . https://doi.org/10.1177/1611894419880462

Title: The other Europe? : Scandinavian intellectuals and the fragility of democracy in the wake of World War II
Author: Strang, Johan
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Centre for Nordic Studies CENS
Date: 2019-11-01
Language: eng
Number of pages: 19
Belongs to series: Journal of Modern European History
ISSN: 1611-8944
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/309996
Abstract: It is often argued that the Scandinavian post-war period was marked by a democratic optimism that contrasts with the deep concerns for the inherent dangers of popular sovereignty and the thorough moral reconsideration that took place on the European continent in the wake of World War II. This article seeks to balance this view by exploring what Scandinavian intellectuals believed had caused the collapse of democracy in Europe in the 1930s and what they saw as the main threats to democracy in the emerging post-war societies. Focusing on the fears of socialist planning, concerns about the position of individual rights and freedoms in modern societies, and the anxieties concerning the secular total state, the article suggests that the Scandinavian post-war democratic settlement was indeed built around a different set of ideas from those evident in many other places in Europe, but that it was no less informed by recent historical experiences or concerns for the fragility of democracy.
Subject: 6160 Other humanities
615 History and Archaeology
611 Philosophy
Christian democracy
democracy
legal realism
militant democracy
post-war
Scandinavia
social democracy
welfare state
POSTWAR WESTERN-EUROPE
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