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Harald Bluetooth’s Welfare State: The Archaeology of Danish Royalty and Democracy

Author(s): Margaret Comer

Year: 2014

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Summary

Although much has been written regarding the ways the ancient past is used to construct Danish national identities, the role of historic archaeology in these politically-concerned endeavors also merits attention. In particular, historic museums and archaeological sites that are related to the Danish royal family and others who played parts in Denmark’’s transition from a kingdom to a modern nation-state perform an active role in the creation and dissemination of ideals of ‘Danish-ness’ and belonging. The deliberate placement of past members of the Danish royalty, along with their material culture, within constructed narratives of Danish and European history and identity represents an attempt to connect the non-democratic governments and people of the past with today’’s modern, democratic polity and its contemporary political agendas and identities. These historic places remain active sites of manufacturing and strengthening ideologies related to the Danish state and what being and becoming a Danish citizen entails.


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Harald Bluetooth’s Welfare State: The Archaeology of Danish Royalty and Democracy. Margaret Comer. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. 2014 ( tDAR id: 436966)


Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): SYM-42,05

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America