Under våren 2022 arrangerar Nordic Labour History Network (NHLN) en ny serie webbinarier om arbetarhistoria. Seminarierna är på engelska. De är gratis och öppna för alla men kräver anmälan.

Hösten 2022

NLHN: Moral injury and American narratives of killing in the Vietnam War

13 December 15:00-16:00

Killing is part of the job description of frontline soldiers who are trained to follow orders and kill or capture the enemy. Transition from civilian norms and life to military and back isn’t straightforward and recent studies have shown that some military veterans suffer from moral injury which originates from violations of personal moral beliefs.

Siitonens dissertation in history discusses moral injury and wartime killing experiences of American soldiers in the Vietnam War. He is interested in how human beings explain extreme violence to themselves and others through stories. His work consists of analyzing American narratives in letters, memoirs, diaries and oral histories with theories of social psychology and setting them into their historical and cultural context.

This presentation describes the context of the Vietnam War and shows examples found from American archives at Texas Tech University and the Library of Congress where Siitonen spent the past year as a visiting researcher.

Presenter: Olli M. Siitonen, University of Helsinki

Våren 2022

Roundtable Digital Labour History and Labour Studies

3 May 14.00-15.30

The digital age has transformed historical and labour research. Mass digitization of archival sources, novel computational methods and the rise of the digital public sphere encourage us to re-think how we research labour and write history in the twenty-first century. It is high time to scrutinize the ”digital turn” in the context of labour history and labour studies. 

Participants: Eric Blanc, New York University (computational text analysis of the 2018 US teachers’ strikes); Risto Turunen, University of Warsaw (text mining of machine-readable labour newspapers); Jenny Jansson, Uppsala University (the labour movement in the digital age).

Hösten 2021

Book Between Denmark and Detroit Ford Motor Company A/S and the Transformation of Fordism 1919–1966

26 October 2021 14.00-15.00

Labour historian Lars K Christensen presents his book ”Between Denmark and Detroit”. In 1919 Ford Motor Company A/S established an assembly plant in Copenhagen, Denmark. The plant, which operated until 1966, was the company’s first on the European mainland, and became a bridgehead for Ford into the Nordic countries. During the 1920’s, Fordism in Detroit was based on autocratic management and militant anti-unionism. But as Fordism came to Denmark and Europe, it was transformed. The book traces this transformation, in the context of the Copenhagen plant.

Lars K Christensen holds a Ph D in labour history. He is head of Research and Heritage Management at the ROMU museums group, Roskilde, Denmark.

Talk Astrid Elkjær Sørensen, Kristin Linderoth: Care workers fight for equal pay

2 November 2021 kl 19.00-20.30

A talk about the care workers fight for equal pay in Sweden and Denmark. In this seminar Ph D in gender studies Kristin Linderoth and Ph D in history Astrid Elkjær Sørensen give an introduction to the 2003 Swedish Municipal Workers’ Union strike for higher wages and to Danish equal pay movements, focusing on activism, strategies and results.

Kristin Linderoth’s presentation will be in Swedish Astrid Elkjær Sørensen’s presentation and the panel will be in English.

Roundtable Digital Labour History

The webinar is cancelled and a new date will be set.

The digital age has transformed historical research. Mass digitization of archival sources, novel computational methods and the rise of the digital public sphere encourage us to re-think how we write history in the twenty-first century (see Technology and the Historian: Transformations in the Digital Age by Adam Crymble). It is high time to scrutinize the ”digital turn” in the context of Nordic labour history.

Participants: Örjan Simonson, The Popular Movements’ Archive (mass digitization of trade union documents); Risto Turunen, Tampere University (text mining of machine-readable labour newspapers); Jenny Jansson, Uppsala University (the labour movement in the digital age).

Book Democracy and the Economy in Finland and Sweden since 1960

23 November 2021 kl 14.00-15.00

Ilkka Kärrylä presents his book Democracy and the Economy in Finland and Sweden since 1960.

The book explores the relationship between democracy and the economy in contemporary political thought and policy-making. Using the concepts of economic, industrial and enterprise democracy, the author focuses on the history of Finland and Sweden during the latter part of the twentieth century. The meanings of the three concepts are examined in the thought of social democrats, conservatives and liberals, as well as in the reforms that they were associated with. This analysis paints a picture of changing economic thought in the Nordic countries, and the West more generally. Arguing that the concept of democracy has evolved from representation towards ’cooperation’ and ‘participation’ in civil society, this book demonstrates how the ideal of individual freedom and choice has surpassed collective decision-making.

These shared characteristics between Finland, Sweden and other Western countries challenge the view that the Nordic countries have been exceptional in resisting neoliberalism. In fact, as this book shows, neoliberalism has been influential to the Nordics since the 1970s.

Ilkka Kärrylä is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Centre for Nordic Studies, University of Helsinki. He specializes in the political and intellectual history of Europe and the Nordic countries, especially the history of economic thought and policy.

Roundtable: Social Democracy in the Nordic counties

30 November 2021 kl 14.00-15.30

The purpose of the panel is to bring history researchers from every Nordic country to a virtual roundtable to discuss new directions and perspectives on the research of social democracy history and to create a dialogue between researchers at the Nordic level. Each participant will present shortly their research interest and perspectives. After the presentations, there will be time for discussion.

Chair: Pauli Kettunen, Professor Emeritus of Political History at the University of Helsinki.

Iben Bjørnsson, Ph D is a researcher and curator at Stevnsfort Museum of the Cold War in Denmark.

Matti Hannikainen, Senior researcher, Finnish Labour Archives. 

Guðmundur Jónsson is a Professor of History at the Department of History, University of Iceland.

Dag Einar Thorsen, associate professor of political science at the University of South-Eastern Norway.

Kjell Östberg, Professor of history at Södertörn University.

Talk Universal Suffrage? Voting Restrictions and Disenfranchisement in Sweden after 1921

7 December 2021 kl 15.00-16.00

In 2021, Sweden celebrates one hundred years of universal suffrage and what has commonly been described as the end of the struggle for voting rights and democracy. The newly published book Universal Suffrage? Voting Restrictions and Disenfranchisement in Sweden after 1921 – based on a research project with the same name  – challenges these narratives. It explores the many voting restrictions that remained  after 1921, and highlights the continuous struggle for expanded suffrage.

In this talk, the book’s editors Annika Berg and Martin Ericsson, together with the project leader Fia Sundevall, will present the project’s main findings and arguments.

Annika Berg is an associate professor of the history of ideas at the Department of Culture and Aesthetics, Stockholm University.

Martin Ericsson is an associate professor of history at the Department of History, Lund University.

Fia Sundevall is an associate professor of economic history at the Swedish Labour Movement’s Archives and Library, and the Department of Economic History and International Relations, Stockholm University.

Roundtable Perspectives on Labour History

14 December 2021 kl 14.00-15.30

Labour history with a special focus on labour process studies has been the subject for analysis in the anthology Från arbetets horisont. Perspektiv på historisk forskning om arbete och samhälle under kapitalismen (From the horizon of work. Perspectives on historical research on work and society under capitalism). Nine historians and economic historians in the field are reflecting on their research careers and thereby discussing their theoretical sources of inspiration but also the changing institutional and societal preconditions for their research. Inspired by the contributions to the anthology, the seminar will in more general term focus on these questions but also discuss different ways to analyse and understand Labour history. Questions will also be brought up by the discussants at the seminar.

Contributors to the anthology: Lars Berggren, Eva Blomberg, Karin Carlsson, Lars Ekdahl (editor), Mats Greiff, Maths Isacson, Lars Olsson, Staffan Stranne, Johan Svanberg.