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Visa arbetsvilja: Arbetslinjen som moral, ritual och gruppsolidaritet
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Studies.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The subject of this study is the “work strategy” (arbetslinjen); the idea that work and active measures are preferred over cash benefits. The aim of the study is to investigate why the work strategy, which has been almost undisputed for nearly a century, has had widely changing contents over the years, what measures have been taken and which groups have been included. It also attempts to find out whether there is a correlation between unemployment rates, society and the different aspects of the work strategy. The study is conducted as an idea analysis, mainly of dissertations on the work strategy and public inquiries, and covers five time periods from the 1920’s until today. The theoretical framework is primarily founded on Randall Collins’ theory of morality, social rituals and group solidarity, but also on Erving Goffmans stigma theory.


The investigation shows, among other things, that the demands upon the unemployed and the aspects of the work strategy vary according to the unemployment rates. In the light of Collins’ theory high unemployment can be seen as a threat to the group morality, as there is then a greater risk of free-riders. It is moral to work and unmoral to receive cash benefits. To make themselves worthy of the benefits and show morality the unemployed must prove their willingness to work by accepting assigned tasks; measures, which are more characterized by control and discipline during times of high unemployment rates. These measures can be seen as social rituals which serve mainly to strengthen the group’s morality and solidarity. There are stratifications from how moral the individuals act. Working leads to high esteem in society, while unemployment implicates a stigma, as the norms of society are not reached.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 41 p.
Keyword [sv]
arbetslinjen, moral, ritual, gruppsolidaritet
National Category
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-44729OAI: diva2:823208
Subject / course
Educational program
International Social Sciences Programme, specialization Global Studies, 180 credits
Available from: 2015-06-18 Created: 2015-06-17 Last updated: 2015-06-18Bibliographically approved

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