transparent gif


Ej inloggad.

Göteborgs universitets publikationer

Re-imagining the (Post-) Industrial Periphery

Författare och institution:
Karl Malmqvist (Sociologiska institutionen)
Publicerad i:
Perspectives from the Periphery: ISA RCHS Interim Conference, Umeå University, Sweden, August 21–24, 2008,
Konferensbidrag, övrigt
Sammanfattning (abstract):
My paper deals with the cultural-historical context in which Umeå University was founded in 1965. This context – as expressed in public investigations and travel reports – may be described as, on the one hand, a strongly felt disbelief in the future possibilities of Northern Sweden as an industrial region and, on the other hand, a strong positive belief in these possibilities. These two competing images of Northern Sweden may in turn be conceived of as two conflicting intellectual views on change and continuity in the region developing simultaneously during the 1960s, one of which may be referred to as ’post-industrial’, while the other may be termed ’industrialist’. One reason for calling the first of these views ’post-industrial’ is that it shares certain elements with the discourse on post-industrial society, which was being developed by some American sociologists in the 1960s. But this view also shares some concerns with the discourse on post-modernity that was soon to emerge in social theory, such as the idea of the contingency of contemporary society or the critique of the ’iron cages’ of instrumental reason and action. Therefore, the ’post-industrial’ view is not narrowly concerned with the future of industrial society, but deals also with more general processes of social change. Having described these two images of Northern Sweden in the 1960s, I will make two claims. Firstly, I will argue that the emergence of what I call the ’post-industrial’ view of Northern Sweden indicates that the discourses on post-industrial society and post-modernity would have been reasonable ways of trying to grasp the changes that were going on in the region during the 1960s, had they actually been explicitly developed here (which of course they were not). In addition to this, I suggest that the public investigations and travel reports in which the industrialist and post-industrial images of Northern Sweden are presented may be seen as a kind of non-academic sociological writings. Secondly, I will argue that although the affinity between the images of Northern Sweden described in this paper and the discourses on post-industrial and post-modern society may indeed seem understandable in the context of the changes that were going on in the region during the 1960s, this does not entail that the images of Northern Sweden are indicators of a transition toward some entirely new condition (for instance, post-modernity). On the contrary, the images of Northern Sweden in the 1960s are in fact essentially modern, since they are all based on a fundamentally modern promissory note: the idea of progress.
Ämne (baseras på Högskoleverkets indelning av forskningsämnen):
Postens nummer:
Posten skapad:
2008-12-04 16:27

Visa i Endnote-format

Göteborgs universitet • Tel. 031-786 0000
© Göteborgs universitet 2007