Citizenship and the political landscape of libelling in Stockholm, c. 1720-70
2008 (English)In: Social history (London), ISSN 0307-1022, E-ISSN 1470-1200, Vol. 33, no 2, 145-163 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The concept of the 'public sphere' has become central to the understanding of the construction of citizenship in the eighteenth century. This article addresses this concept and its implications for the study of political subjectivity, communication and public space by mapping the political landscape created by the practice of libelling in eighteenth-century Stockholm. Rejecting both a strict reading of the Habermasian public and a spatialization of the public sphere, this study looks at political action in public space and discusses the use of place in the creation of political identity. This is done by analysing libels posted in four different settings: on private property; in places associated with a specific social group; on official buildings; and at the pillory. The article draws a political landscape in which politicians were under public scrutiny, the social foundations of citizenship were under discussion, and where different views corresponded to specific places. Combined, places remade through libelling created an accessible political landscape where the most important challenges towards the state took place outside what would be deemed the 'public'. In conclusion, it is argued that the political life of the city was not organized in 'separate spheres' lacking intercommunication, but should be viewed as spatial practices and places that were part of, and should be treated as, one political landscape.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 33, no 2, 145-163 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-142089DOI: 10.1080/03071020802027553ISI: 000256973300002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-142089DiVA: diva2:387347