Folkhemmet på is : Ishockey, modernisering och nationell identitet i Sverige 1920-1972

Detta är en avhandling från Malmö : Idrottsforum

Sammanfattning: This thesis concerns the development of Swedish ice hockey as a national phenomenon during the period 1920–1972. The dissertation explores how the sport of ice hockey in just over half a century was transformed from a rather insignificant North American cultural import to one of Sweden’s most treasured pursuits by and large, and harbouring a national team (known as “Tre Kronor”) that at the height of its popularity in 1970 gathered almost the whole nation (82 percent of the adult population) in front of TV-sets during national game broadcasts.The analytical approach of the study is grounded in the theoretical assumption that “to be Swedish” is something you “learn” on a daily basis, and that an investigation of how “the nation” is constructed as an imagined community must see to the interplay between national rhetoric on the one hand and national practice on the other. This means that the analysis moves on two different levels, where the first is comprised of the sporting practice in itself (teams, games, players etc.), while the other deals with the conception of ice hockey in relation to national identity.The empirical investigation shows that the introduction of ice hockey in Sweden was “launched from above” under the influence of unbridled nationalistic sentiment in Sweden at large at the turn of the 20th century. The study also shows that during the inter-war era the Swedish Ice Hockey Federation promoted the spread of ice hockey in Sweden by stressing the game’s benefits as a more practical sport than the similar and already established winter sport, bandy. It is also argued that in most cases it was not so much a genuine passion for the game itself, but instead prosaic factors (economical considerations, sporting success and maintenance of ice surface etc.) that made sporting clubs take up ice hockey.After World War II the public interest in ice hockey exploded in Sweden. In the cold war era, Tre Kronor came to function as a thermometer of how the so called Swedish model stood up in comparison to the superpowers of the world. The analysis also underlines the importance of the comprehensive organizational and moral rearmament of Swedish ice hockey at large conducted by the Swedish Ice Hockey Federation in the post-war era, since it helped its cultural incorporation in the Swedish welfare state and its connection to Swedish national identity

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