Forståelsen av 22. juli [Understanding 22 July]

Book Chapter

Kolås, Åshild (2018) Forståelsen av 22. juli [Understanding 22 July], in Henrik Syse, ed., Norge etter 22. juli: Forhandlinger om verdier, identiteter og et motstandsdyktig samfunn [Norway After July 22, 2011 Negotiating values, identities and a resilient society]. Oslo: Cappelen Damm Akademisk (109–125).

​How was Norwegian society affected by the attacks on the government headquarters in Oslo and the Labour Party’s youth camp on Utøya on July 22, 2011? This chapter examines what changed and what remained unchanged in Norwegian society after the July 22 attacks. With the help of a data set of commentaries, op-eds and letters to the editor in five Norwegian newspapers, I have identified important topics that were addressed in the wake of the terrorist attacks and examined each topic in view of the policy measures or changes that were put into effect in the aftermath. In an attempt to elucidate the social consequences of the July 22 attacks, I have further investigated the frameworks of understanding that were used in the print media to describe and make sense of the attacks, the problems and possible solutions the attacks were related to, and the categories, codes and meanings that were mobilized to interpret what had happened. The study suggests that the overwhelming social mobilization just after the attacks was followed by a hesitant political debate that was confined within narrow frameworks of understanding.

Read the chapter here (Open Access)

Authors

Åshild Kolås

Åshild Kolås

Research Professor

Editors

Henrik Syse

Henrik Syse

Research Professor. Editor, Journal of Military Ethics