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Viktor Lennstrand and Sweden's Secularization
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Political, Historical, Religious and Cultural Studies.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Viktor Lennstrand was the first person in Sweden to establish an organization completely devoted to atheist activism: Utilistiska samfundet. This in itself makes him an important figure in Swedish history; however, he is also significant in another way. Lennstrand had a personal connection to the leaders of the three groups which had the most influence on Sweden's long-term secularization: the Swedish Free Church movement, freethinkers, and the Swedish Social Democratic Workers' Party.

This master's thesis is a brief examination of Lennstrand's life. It will use the secularization paradigm to explain Lennstrand's place in the history of the secularization of Sweden.

Specifically, it will show that Lennstrand's philosophy and activism should be seen as the product of the secularization process rather than a significant cause for its further evolution.

It will also show that the reason for Lennstrand's failure to become a major influence on the secularization of Sweden was his inability to connect the Utilistiska samfund to a larger educational or political movement. This, in turn, was largely due to his personal animosity towards the SAP's leaders, the change in his personality which occurred after leaving prison, and, of course, his short life.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 61 p.
Keyword [en]
Lennstrand, Atheism, Secularization
Keyword [sv]
Lennstrand, ateism, sekularisering
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-34076OAI: diva2:753399
Subject / course
Available from: 2014-10-23 Created: 2014-10-07 Last updated: 2015-03-06Bibliographically approved

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