uu.seUppsala University Publications
Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
The car and the folkhem: Automobility and the making of modern Sweden
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5123-1357
2014 (English)Conference paper, Abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The topic of this paper is inspired by an apparent paradox. In a country known for its folkhem, a philosophy and social project based in values of collective action and solidarity, the primary mode of transportation is that icon of individualism, the automobile. Indeed, the folkhem (literally, “people’s home,” referring to the welfare state and its complementary ideology) and the automobile system were established simultaneously during the 20th century. Given this coincidence, it is curious that the potential symbiotic relationship between the automobile system (and “automobility”) and the folkhem has not been studied previously. These systems have profoundly shaped the relationship between the individual and the state as well as the (social and spatial) mobility of Swedish citizens. The paper discusses the potential roles of the individualistic mobility provided by the car in the construction of the collective project of the folkhem, and indeed in the construction of a modern Swedish national identity. The paper reviews the development of the folkhem and automobile system, focusing on their potential connections, and then considers what the literature on automobility has to contribute to the study of the car and the folkhem.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
automobility, Sweden, folkhem
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-287523OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-287523DiVA: diva2:922877
Political Geography Specialty Group Preconference
Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, P11-0754-1
Available from: 2016-04-25 Created: 2016-04-25 Last updated: 2016-04-25

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Jansson, David
By organisation
Department of Social and Economic Geography
Human Geography

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Total: 9 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link