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A Nineteenth‐century Finnish Reading Society and Its World Views: Commerce, Civilization and Colonialism Examined
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of language studies.
2009 (English)In: Svensk biblioteksforskning, ISSN 0284-4354, E-ISSN 1653-5235, Biblioteksforskning/ Swedish Library Research, Vol. 17, no 1, 1-27 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The main objective of this essay is to examine the ʹworld viewsʹ of the nineteenth‐century Finnish circulatory library, ʺLäsesällskapet i Gamlakarlebyʺ that operated under mild imperial (Russian) supervision during its active period (1800‐ca 1870). For this purpose I have studied 93 beyond‐Europe books of travel and geography. I have identified two major ideological divides: a colonial that promotes ongoing aggressive Western expansion and a conciliatory one that mediates doubts and resistance. Samuel Ödmann, the translator and Uppsala professor of theology, represents the former divide; Anders Chydenius, one of the founding members, economist and clergyman, the latter. The collection engages, it is shown, the local reader of direct or indirect experiences of sailing, the ship industry and commerce which were the major trades of (Gamla)Karleby at the time. The Africa and West Indies related texts are a particularly rich feature. Slavery andt he unlucky Swedish part in colonization (Sierra Leone and St. Barthélemy) concern the readers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Borås: Högskolan i Borås, Institutionen Biblioteks- och Informationsvetenskap , 2009. Vol. 17, no 1, 1-27 p.
Keyword [en]
Swedish colonialism; travel literature; colonial translation; imperialism
National Category
General Literature Studies History History of Ideas
Research subject
biblioteks- och informationsvetenskap; Social and Economic Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-19623OAI: diva2:202177

The essay includes a number of illustrations

Available from: 2009-03-08 Created: 2009-03-08 Last updated: 2012-09-03

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Other links and Its World Views: Commerce, Civilization and Colonialism Examined. Svensk Biblioteksforskning, 17:1, 1-21.

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Granqvist, Raoul J.
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