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(Re)producing a "peripheral" region: Northern Sweden in the news
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography.
2008 (English)In: Geografiska Annaler. Series B. Human Geography, ISSN 0435-3684, Vol. 90, no 4, 369-388 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Building on theories of internal orientalism, the objectiveof this study is to show how intra-national differences arereproduced through influential media representations. By abstractingnews representations of Norrland, a large, sparsely populatedregion in the northernmost part of Sweden, new modes of“internal othering” within Western modernity are put on view.Real and imagined social and economical differences between the“rural North” and the “urban South” are explained in terms of“cultural differences” and “lifestyle” choices. The concept ofNorrland is used as an abstract essentialized geographical categoryand becomes a metonym for a backward and traditional ruralspace in contrast to equally essentialized urban areas with favouredmodern ideals. Specific traits of parts of the region becomeone with the entire region and the problems of the region becomethe problems of the people living in the region. I argue that thenews representations play a part in the reproduction of a “spaceof exception”, in that one region is constructed as a traditional andundeveloped space in contrast to an otherwise modern nation. Acentral argument of this study is that research on identity constructionand representations of place is needed to come to grips withissues of uneven regional development within western nations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Swedish society for anthropology and geography , 2008. Vol. 90, no 4, 369-388 p.
Keyword [en]
internal orientalism, news representations, regional development, Sweden, Norrland
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Social and Economic Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-19636DOI: 1468-0467OAI: diva2:202456
Out of the periphery - on migration livelihood and place discourses in the northern periphery
Available from: 2009-03-13 Created: 2009-03-09 Last updated: 2009-03-13Bibliographically approved

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Eriksson, Madeleine
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