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The birth of a national movement: The Sami and the Swedish state, 1900–1950
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Centre for Sami Research. (Arcum)
2013 (English)In: L’image du Sápmi II: Études comparées / [ed] Kajsa Andersson, Örebro: Örebro University , 2013, 12-34 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The period 1900-1950 was an establishment phase for the Sami movement in Sweden, during which it developed from a situation where individual leaders were instrumental for any actions to a national organization. The leaders had several obstacles to overcome in this process, such as a structural subordination of the Sami in Swedish society and active resistance towards Sami organization from the Lapp Administration and the County Administrative Boards. Three persons dominated the movement during the period, Elsa Laula, Torkel Tomasson and Gustav Park, but their strategies and attitudes differed significantly. Laula and Tomasson were political idealists; they wanted to strengthen the position of the Sami to negotiate with the state through the creation of an organizational network led by a national Sami organization. Their idealism seems to have bordered on naïveté, however, as the number of local Sami societies continually were too few and economically weak to achieve this. Park, on the other hand, was skeptical of the possibilities to establish a national organization, as he deemed the level of political activity among the Sami population as too low. Direct action was the strategy preferred by Park, where problems could be attacked more directly and results could be achieved quickly. He would, however, more or less by necessity, change his opinion, and in 1950 he became the chairman of the first national Sami organization in Sweden.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro University , 2013. 12-34 p.
, Humanistica Oerebroensia. Artes et linguae, ISSN 1403-6525 ; 16
Keyword [en]
Sami history, political mobilization, Sami leaders
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-81362ISBN: 978-91-7668-943-1OAI: diva2:654672
Available from: 2013-10-08 Created: 2013-10-08 Last updated: 2016-05-18Bibliographically approved

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