Welfare State Criticism as Elite Criticism in 1970s Denmark

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This chapter describes the advent of welfare state criticism as elite criticism in the Danish political debate. It focuses on three of the most prolific contemporary critics of the welfare state: founder of the libertarian populist party Fremskridtspartiet, Mogens Glistrup; Marxist and economist Jørgen Dich; and Bertel Haarder, member of the Danish Liberal Party. The chapter highlights how welfare state criticism as elite criticism came about in processes of conceptual circulation and transformation, which, at times, eluded individual intentions and control but nonetheless signified an ideational convergence. While many politicians, scholars, and intellectuals from different ideological camps voiced welfare state criticism as elite criticism, some played more crucial role than others in framing debate on crisis of the welfare state. Welfare state criticism as elite criticism was constructed in processes of circulation through which social commentators picked up, appropriated, and transformed rhetorical styles and political concepts to fit several highly diverse political agendas.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHistories of Knowledge in Postwar Scandinavia : Actors, Arenas, and Aspirations
EditorsNiklas Olsen, Johan Östling, David Larsson Heidenblad
Number of pages16
Publication date2020
ISBN (Electronic)9781003019275
Publication statusPublished - 2020
SeriesKnowledge Societies in History

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