Swedishness on Stage
The New Sweden-88 Jubilee and the Renegotiation of State-Market Relations in Swedish Public Diplomacy at the Close of the Cold War
Keywords:Second Cold War, public diplomacy, cultural diplomacy, media events, Swedish-American relations, state-market relations
Globalization, stagflation and economic uncertainty challenged the Swedish welfare model during the 1980s, driving renegotiations of state-market relations domestically as well as re-conceptualizations of Sweden’s place in the world internationally. This article addresses how a key media event – the 1638–1988 New Sweden 350th Anniversary of the New Sweden Colony in North America (New Sweden-88) – reflects these shifts. Drawing upon materials from the National Committee for New Sweden ’88 and various public-private Swedish-American foundations and initiatives as well as Swedish and US media reception, the paper argues that these renegotiations of Swedish self-identity in the late 1980s contributed in certain ways to prepare the intellectual ground for far-ranging reforms of the Swedish welfare model which followed during the globalized 1990s.
Copyright (c) 2021 Carl Marklund
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