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Nomadskolinspektörerna och socialdarwinismen 1917-1945
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Historical Studies.
1998 (Swedish)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The aim with this work is to investigate whether and to what extent the three first inspectors of the nomadic schools in Sweden revealed any signs of socialdarwinistic thought in their yearly reports from 1917 to 1945. For this reason I read through not only the named reports but also other official writings belonging to the inspectors as well as articles in Samefolkets Egen Tidning from that time. Darwin’s theory about the evolution of species and the human race was soon applied to explain the development of the human races and their various cultures. Furthermore it was combined with earlier notions concerning the effect of environmental influences on man’s development and a resulting cultural hierarchy. Thus leading scientists of that time placed the farming and industrial societies above gathering-hunting and nomadic societies. Societies placed on a lower level on the development scale, it was believed, would die out if they came into contact with higher societies. This was also true to the treatment of the mountain Saami population in Sweden. The nomadic school system which was introduced by law in 1913 aimed at keeping the mountain Saami segregated, not only from the Swedish population but also from the forest Saami who where regarded an even lower society. With the first two inspectors it becomes obvious that their ideology was based on socialdarwinistic thought. Vitalis Karnell even refers to racial premisis and Erik Bergström uses words that are almost directly taken from socialdarwinistic argumentation. With Axel Calleberg it is unclear whether he regarded the Saami as an inferior society. He reveals a less paternalistic attitude towards the mountain Saami than did his predecessors. The underlying ideas concerning the nomadic school system were not seen by some, or were strongly refuted by other leading Saami personalities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Forskningsarkivet, Umeå universitet , 1998. , 42 p.
Scriptum: Rapportserie utgiven av Forskningsarkivet vid Umeå universitet, ISSN 0284-3161 ; 47
Keyword [en]
nomadic schools, nomadic school inspectors, socialdarwinism
Keyword [sv]
sameundervisning, nomadskolor, Vitalis Karnell, Erik Bergström, Axel Calleberg, minoritetsundervisning
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-33289OAI: diva2:311292
Available from: 2010-04-21 Created: 2010-04-21 Last updated: 2013-05-27Bibliographically approved

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