Nothing Swedish Here…

The ripples continue to spread from the Scandinavia-negating video commercial by SAS. The graphic below is one example (hat tip LN), as is the brief satirical essay below it by Thomas Bertonneau.

Nothing Swedish here…

by Thomas F. Bertonneau

There is nothing characteristically Swedish about generic person Fred Åkerström’s vintage televised performance of the entirely forgettable Fredmann’s Epistle No. 48“Solen glimmar blank och trind” [“The Sun is Shining Smooth and Round”] — by the generic poet-musician Carl Michael Bellman (1740-1795), who only accidentally wrote in Swedish. Notice Åkerström’s two accompanists — the Bantu flutist and the Samoyed violoncellist. It is well known that Bellman’s poetry is based on the oral traditions of the ancient Peruvians, which were culturally appropriated by the Vikings during their imperialistic voyages in the eleventh century. Of course, there was nothing characteristically Scandinavian about the Vikings either. Their “dragon ships” were plagiarized from the hull-form of the Polynesian Kon-Tiki rafts.

Below are the first three stanzas in English. The full verses may be found here.

The sun is shining bright and round
The water is like a mirror
After a while a wind starts blowing
into slacking sails
The pennant is unfolded and with an oar
Olle is standing on a hay-boat
Kerstin comes out from the cabin
locks the door

The steel is shining, the pipe is light
Olle scratches his ear
The rudder is turned, the boat turns around
The old man is busy
Beneath strong eyebrows
he grins against the sun in the sky
Kerstin, the sweetheart of the old man
will tend to the sails now

The sails are flapping, the boat is moving forward
Jerker grabs his lyre
The lyre hums, the waves hit against the boat
With force and frenzy
The boat creaks, fragile, thin
The wind is seen in the top of the boat
The rooster crows so harsh and hoarse
The clock just struck four

For previous essays by Thomas F. Bertonneau, see the Thomas Bertonneau Archives.

9 thoughts on “Nothing Swedish Here…

  1. “Few debates about national populism fail to mention immigration; this is why it is crucial to explore exactly how this issue and the wider ethnic transformation of the West are creating room for revolts like Brexit, Trump and populists in Europe. Again, we need to step back and take in the broad view. While many Western nations, not least the US, have experienced immigration in recent centuries, more recent flows have often been unprecedented in size, involved different types of migrants, and are more broadly ushering in an era of what we call ‘hyper ethnic change’. This is causing significant fears and resentment among large numbers of voters, which will likely accelerate. However, we reject the popular claim that national populism is simply a refuge for racists and people driven by an irrational fear of ‘the other’. While racists are undoubtedly drawn to national populists, by no means everybody who votes for them is racist. Rather, national populists often raise legitimate questions such as what number of immigrants can be accommodated, what skill set they should have and whether new arrivals should have access to the same benefits as long-standing citizens. Anxieties about the scale and pace of ethnic change are not simply rooted in economics and the availability of jobs. Despite what many on the liberal left claim, and as nearly twenty years of research have shown, what is just as important, if not more so, are people’s fears about how immigration and ethnic change are seen to threaten their national identity. Our overarching argument is that national populism partly reflects deep-rooted public fears about how a new era of immigration and hyper ethnic change could lead to the destruction of their wider group and way of life.“

    Roger Eatwell
    National Populism: The Revolt Against Liberal Democracy

    • The instantaneously nefarious SAS video certainly has a connection with immigration. Its immediate claim, however, that no such a thing as Swedish culture exists, is — I am trying to moderate my words — ferociously nihilistic, in that it lays the rhetorical ground for full-court cultural annihilation. It says to actual Swedes, “You have no actuality,” and, “there is no such thing as Swedishness.” A further implication is that, in the eyes of the filmmakers, people who maintain contact with Swedish traditions deserve to be treated as though they were nothing. I have read that when Swedish farmers, in ploughing their fields, turn up ancient artifacts and pass them along to the Ministry of Culture, the new policy is to discard them; or, if they are metallic, to melt them down.

      I hope that readers will audit Fredmann’s Epistle No. 48 by Bellman in Akerstrom’s rendition. Bellman, as thoroughly Swedish as one can be, wrote some of the finest songs of the late-classical, early-romantic period. Swedish culture, from its folk-basis to high art, is extraordinarily rich and accomplished. All this the people who control Sweden would deny.

    • When the UN declared that the only indigenous Europeans are the Sami, it then became standard in school to teach the young ones that ‘their’ countries and lands never belonged to them, therefore any and all are welcome and you MUST accomodate them. Of course the EU has further pushed this brainwashing every minute of every day.

      Make no mistake, the UN is a hideous front for destruction of Europe, and the EU is the hammer and sickle.

      • You can claim and name anywhere you want any way you want. Better be able to back it up. Just like mankind has been going since the beginning of time. Western European governments are a shambles. I imagine the first half [tushed] flushes of force for omg violent defence of the pc homeland will be blown away with surprises. The rest I hope not.

    • I remember Roger Eatwell from my time as an undergraduate at Bath University in the 1970’s, he was my politics tutor. Nice guy. Lefty though, well he was then.

  2. Such a queer recall. In Ireland the towns of Dublin, Waterford and Wexford are celebrated today for their pillaging, plundering, destruction, slave trading Viking connections. Nary a murmur of complaint about the plunder, slaughter and enslavement of the locals. Later came the Norsemen from northern France through England with their conquered Celt and Saxon manpower. Etcetera. I imagine the immigrants are planning to take full advantage of the lie the locals are living.

  3. The Norse, when they converted to Christianity, generally ceased their Viking predations although they continued their nasty habit of feuding and letting their feuds get out of hand. Islam has never cast off its predatory character, but has continued the jihad for fourteen hundred years.

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