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Från ung rabulist till humanioras starke man: Ideal och legitimitetsstrategier hos den unge Erik Lönnroth
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of History of Science and Ideas.
2013 (Swedish)In: Historisk Tidskrift (S), ISSN 0345-469X, Vol. 133, no 2, 145-173 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

From rowdy youngster to front man of the establishment. Ideals and strategies of the young Erik Lönnroth

This article investigates the ideals and strategies of Erik Lönnroth, one of the leading and most influential scholars in Swedish humanities in the twentieth century. The focus is on his career during the interwar years and the article seeks to explain the change in Lönnroth’s scholarly ideals after he established himself in the upper echelons of the profession. His early ideal was the presentation of far-reaching reevaluations of Swedish medieval history. To do this he adhered to the ideal of historical synthesis, which was presented as an alternative to both narrow empirical specialization and ideological use of history. This ideal corresponded to a certain liberal aristocratic culture prevalent among academics in Gothenburg in the interwar years. After he established himself at the professorial level Lönnroth was recruited to the Swedish liberal morning paper Dagens Nyheter, along with other prominent liberal intellectuals of the time, such as political scientist Herbert Tingsten and philospher Ingemar Hedenius. In this new environment Lönnroth deserted his former ideal of historical synthesis and supported the ideal of specialization, which was more in tune with the general style of research in the postwar years. Lönnroth’s reorientation can also be explained as an attempt to “cover his tracks” since his synthetical interpretations came under attack by more specialized researchers. The impulse behind Lönnroth’s reorientation is therefore symptomatic of the gradual transformation of historiography from a literary genre to a modern research discipline.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 133, no 2, 145-173 p.
Keyword [en]
Sweden, 20th Century, Historiography, Humanities, Sociology of Knowledge, Science Studies, Erik Lönnroth
National Category
Research subject
History of Sciences and Ideas
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-211927ISI: 000336234600002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-211927DiVA: diva2:670448
Available from: 2013-12-03 Created: 2013-12-03 Last updated: 2014-07-02Bibliographically approved

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