Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE credits
Sweden was transformed to a democratic industrial society in the late 19th century. Political influence had been bound to the four estates, nobles, clergy, burghers and farmers. The reforms of the 1860s moved Sweden towards political democracy with universal suffrage. At the national level a two-chamber parliament was established in 1866. Political power should now be a function of economic status. The right to vote was seen as a right for those who paid taxes and contributed to the community.
There were even significant changes at the local level. The right to participate in town governance expanded to new groups in the society. This development was, however, not equal in al towns.
A new municipal civic concept was issued in 1862 with the local Government reform. Citizenship in the towns used to be a right for the bourgeoisie. The reform created a connection between civil rights and fiscal performance. The right to vote was graduated according to income and wealth. The purpose with the local Government reform in 1862 was to build an independent local board against the State.
It was also decided that city council was mandatory for towns with more than 3,000 citizens. For those towns that had less than 3000 citizens were the choices of retaining public town hall or establish a city council. Uppsala had more than 3,000 inhabitants in 1862. Enköping introduced city council in 1887 when the population reached the limit. This study examines the consequences of this decision for Uppsala and Enköping.
This study examines local Government reform of 1862 from a new perspective. The reform has often been studied from a local perspective and the development of one town or municipality. What is missing is that the degree of political influence could be a product of where people lived.
2011. , 48 p.
Scholz, Michael F.