Ancient Constitutions and Modern Monarchy
Førsteamanuensis i idéhistorie Håkon Evju er aktuell med en bok som handler om historieskrivning og dens politiske betydning i dansk-norsk opplysningstid.
What was the role of historical thought and historical inquiry in debates over reform during the Enlightenment? In Ancient Constitutions and Modern Monarchy, Håkon Evju addresses this issue by considering the case of eighteenth-century Denmark-Norway. He argues that historians contributed crucially to the rethinking of Dano-Norwegian absolutism in the face of a shift towards commercial society. Their vision of an ancient Nordic constitution helped recast the monarchy as moderate and influenced debates over agricultural improvements in Denmark and Norway. In an innovative comparative analysis, Evju demonstrates how notions of a common political past were used differently in the two kingdoms. Yet in both cases, such appeals to tradition were vital in controversies over monarchical reform politics during the Enlightenment.
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