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Reconciliation or Power Struggle?: On the Consecration of the Chapel in Skibotn in 1931
Department of History, University of Tromsø, Norway.
2009 (English)In: Journal of Northern Studies, ISSN 1654-5915, no 1, 55-68 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In the inter-war period there was a massive Norwegianization campaign in the northern parts of Norway. This campaign was a result of the ideology of nationalism as well as the fact that Norway recently had received its full independence and regarded a border security policy in the north as necessary. Since Finland had received its independence in 1917, some nationalist organizations in Finland wanted to expand the Finnish territory northwards to the Arctic Ocean. The ethnic aspect of this conflict was that a Finnish speaking minority, the Kvens, had settled in Northern Norway. Norwegian central authorities feared that the Kvens would feel a stronger loyalty towards Finland than Norway.

Religion was a central aspect of this conflict with implications for minority and security policy issues. On one hand the National church was regarded as a nation building tool by the state in the ethnically mixed northern border regions. On the other hand many of the Kvens, as well as the Sami, adhered to the pietistic and puritan Laestadian revival movement which was critical towards the National church. Although the Laestadians were officially members of the National church, the movement had their own assemblies and independent religious structures.

In this article I discuss the National church and the Laestadian movement in the light of nation building and minority policy in the northern borderland of Norway.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå University & The Royal Skyttean Society , 2009. no 1, 55-68 p.
Keyword [en]
Laestadianism, Kvens, Bishop Berggrav, Erik Johnsen, Norwegianization
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-43259OAI: diva2:412586
Available from: 2011-04-27 Created: 2011-04-26 Last updated: 2011-04-27Bibliographically approved

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