Att (ut)bilda ett folk : Nationell och etnisk gemenskap i Sveriges och Finlands svenskspråkiga läroböcker för folk- och grundskola åren 1866-2016

Sammanfattning: In this comparative study, elementary school textbooks in history, geography and social science/civics from Sweden and Finland 1866 – 2016 are analysed and compared. The focus is textbooks’ expressions of imagined communities, identification and common history. The study has an asymmetric design, because the textbooks are all written in Swedish for pupils in a Swedish majority population in Sweden and a Finland-Swede minority population in Finland.The aim is to contribute a deeper understanding of textbooks’ role in creating and teaching imagined communities. Research questions focus on how imagined communities are mediated in textbooks and results are compared between Sweden and Finland and over time, and on similarities and differences in offered communities expressed through concepts and use of history. The thesis also raises questions about how present needs affect textbooks’ interpretations of the past and what that signifies. Theory and method are inspired by Fairclough’s Critical Discourse Analysis. The theoretical framework is typologies of use of history, and the textbooks have been contextualised through the contexts of school, curricula, politics, minorities, language policies and history culture. The textbooks’ development over time, between contexts and between school subjects are compared at all levels throughout the study.Results show that textbooks have had, and still have a role in creating and educating pupils into national and ethnical identities; this is seen over the entire period of time studied, though with different approaches according to the school subject and country. Even though ethnical and nationalistic narratives are more implicit today, they are still visible in current textbooks.

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