’Zetterlunden’ in Stockholm inaugurated, in memory of jazz vocalist Monica Zetterlund – and meeting someone from forty years ago

What’s on my mind Facebook asks as soon as you open your account? Monica is on my mind. The great, fabolous Monica Zetterlund, musician, jazz vocalist with a broad repertoire. One of those great cultural personalities from the province of Värmland – my province 😉 Others: Selma Lagerlöf, Gustaf Fröding, Göran Tunström…

Monica died five years ago A couple of weeks ago, a park in her memory, Zetterlunden in Stockholm city, was inaugurated with music and speeches, and with a beautiful wooden ’singing sofa’ with her songs playing as soon as someone sits in the sofa.- If you do not know her music, go to youtube or to www.spotify.se to listen free of charge. For example ‘Walz for Monica’ with Bill Evans, who changed the song title from ‘Walz for Debbie

The inauguration ceremony was complete, with music and a main speech by our beloved Hans Alfredsson, author, film director and ’stand up comedian’ (before we knew that is what he also is). Afterwards,in the bar of 18th century restaurant ’Claes på hörnet’ I had an extremely interesting conversation with someone I did not meet for several decades. In Göteborg (Gothenborg).

I studied at the School of Economics and he was part of a generation of young, progressive and brilliant actors. We, some students belonging to Värmland-Dals Nation (a social organization for students coming from those two provinces) located in a nice, old cellar on Lorensbergsgatan close to Götaplatsen and Stadsteatern/ the City Theater, now and then went to Stadsteatern together to see a play. We had invited some of the young actors for a dinner we had prepared in our cellar, we went there to lay the table and the young actors, our age, came, accompanied by Harry Ahlin, a distinguished actor/gentleman in his late 60’s. — In the bar now we talked about life and ambitions then, and life today. We talked about critical theatre and research then, and now. A reference point was August Strindberg’s ‘Mäster Olof’ about the young revolutionary priest Olaus Petri, and his being forced to compromise with the king …

We had food and wine or beer and aquavit and discussed theater and culture and academia – and politics! This was during the ’student revolution’! I had been as an exchange student in Paris i June-July 1968 – in May I was not allowed to enter France. The months in an internship in an EDF power plant and in a regional main office south of Paris were fascinating and I learned a lot about life, work and politics – But that is another story…

(SD) har ‘kapat’ Facebooks valenkät – Rösta antirasistskt! — Sweden democrats (extreme right, racist, populist party) have ’captured’ a Facebook election survey, so, vote antiracist!

Jag arbetar på en artikel på temat:  ”Facebookvalet ’kapat’ av Sverigedemokraterna – Rösta bort deras inflytande!”

Short summary in English:  Sept. 15 there will be general elections in Sweden. There is a risk that for the first time Sverigedemokraterna (SD), the Sweden Democrats, a xenofobic, right wing populist party, will get seats in the parliament/Riksdag. SD is very active on the webb, not least Facebook, and in a survey, and ’net election’ with a Facebook app. the SD come out as the largest party among all young ’voters’, up until 30 years of age. SD is using these figures to strenghten their propaganda. Conclusion for my Swedish friends it to go to the Facebook election app.  and vote non-racist.

På Facebook kan man gå till ’Riksdagsvalet 2010’ och lägga sin ’röst’. Utfallet hittills är gynnsamt för Sverigedemokraterna. SD är största parti bland unga upp till 30 års ålder. De utnyttjar siffrorna för sina syften, för att stärka sina medlemmar och för att dra med sig andra till det de själva ser som ett parti på frammarsch – om än bara i en icke-representativ enkät, färgad av SD:s effektiva utnyttjande av nätet.

Ett bidrag till att få ett sannolikt mer rättvisande utfall, och vrida facebookvapnet ur Sverigedemokraternas näve är att gå man ur huse, ut på nätet och rösta antirasistiskt, för en human politik för invandring och social integration  nu genast på Facebook och på valdagen den 19 september. Därtill bör man begrunda opinionsläget och rösta genomtänkt så att risken för en minoritetsregering med Sverigedemokraterna som stödparti minimeras. Kanske kommer någon att välja att bli blockbytare?”

Bakgrund: Jag har inte i min forskning undersökt frågor om främlingsfientlighet. Däremot har jag konfronterats med främlingsfientlighet genom många besök i Danmark de senaste decennierna och genom uppväxt och besök i ett värmländskt brukssamhälle, som varit ett fäste för en avdelning av ett rasistiskt MC-gäng. Jag har haft anledning reflektera över frågan som medborgare och i samband med studier av arbetsmarknadens förändring, och de EU-domar och regeringsbeslut som försvagar svenska kollektivavtals tillämpning för arbetare från andra länder på svenska arbetsplatser. Det kan bli en slags ’illojal konkurrens’ mellan ’lågprisinvandrare’ och svenska arbetare som har avtalsmässig lön och arbetsmiljö  – och en grogrund för främlingshat och SD.

Ovan är temat i en kommande artikel. Jag arbetar vidare med texten och återkommer…

New site design ready to roll! Rock on!! In search of followers and comments …”

Kära vänner och kollegor / Dear friends and colleagues / Chers amis et collègues / Liebe Freunde und Kolleg(inn)en and etc.  …

”Rock on!!” says my friend Björn, who designed this site for me. (By the way – Any comments on the site design and usability are welcome, to both Björn and me. I myself am now getting acquainted. )

I will continue slowly filling the various pages of my site with content, mainly from my work and research, and also try to write now and then some more substantial blog posts; so far, as you noticed, blog posts have but announced site updates. As usual, as autumn begins, ambitions are high, there is energy uploaded during a long and sunny summer in the Stockholm archipelago and on Danish island. The result may be somewhat less sporadic blog posts.

I also have another blog (almost exclusively in Swedish) on Blogger, at http://akesandberg.blogspot.se. Most posts are opinion texts, comments to ongoing debates and processes in the Swedish society: Culture, media, IT, work, organization – and politics, especially now with elections to the Riksdag (Parliament) coming up, on Sunday Sept. 19.

The outcome may turn out to be of fundamental importance for the the economy, competitiveness and welfare. Can competitiveness and material prosperity be combined with a high ambitions in social welfare, high taxes, equality/solidarity, strong union and employer organizations and collective agreements between management and labour?

Some believe that the above characteristics constitutes the ’Swedish model’  that has served us so well for decades. Others seem to believe that essential principles and parts of the welfare system must be dismantled in order to secure economic development – while repeatedly saying they want to maintain and develop the ’Swedish welfare model’.  I may come back to the election in a blog post in English here soon.

My blog at blogspot.com,  in Swedish, thus mostly contains opinion articles, while the blog here will have a leaning more towards research-related issues, which is not to say neither that my other, Swedish, blog is not influenced by research –  It certainly is! – nor that my English blog here would not present opinion and comments.

This is my first real and substantial blog post.  So I now hope I will find followers, and also get comments. If not immediately, as this post is rather general and introductory, but on posts to come.

Hej då, Cheers, Salutations, Ciao  / Åke

Hello there!

April 30 2010:  Welcome to my new home page. Slowly I intend to build it up with information about my work and reseaarch (and perhaps my life). There will among other things be presentations of research projects and lists of publications and some links to full texts.