'All people living in Norway could become Norwegian': How ordinary people blur the boundaries of nationhood

Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Strømsø, Mette (2018) 'All people living in Norway could become Norwegian': How ordinary people blur the boundaries of nationhood, Ethnicities. DOI: doi.org/10.1177%2F1468796818788589.

​This article draws on 60 semi-structured interviews conducted in 2015 to explore how ordinary people produce and reproduce boundaries of Norwegian nationhood in their everyday lives. This is achieved by unpacking the entangled relationship between individuals’ perceptions of nationhood and their everyday experiences. The finding is that individuals are inconsistent when producing and reproducing boundaries of nationhood in their everyday lives, drawing on various symbolic resources at different times and places. Exposing the inconsistency – both within and between individuals – challenges the structures and preconceived notions of a fixed and stable boundary demarcating Norwegian nationhood. When boundaries are produced or reproduced, they are clear; however, by approaching boundary-making as a contingent event, the uncertainty of wherewhy and if a boundary will be produced and/or reproduced blurs people’s perceptions and experiences of these very boundaries. The study examines this contingency through individuals’ unique and changing circumstances and along public and private dimensions.

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