June 16, 2013
One of my Swedish readers has volunteered to answer some frequently asked questions about Sweden and Swedes. So, just ask away in the comments and he may answer them. (Or not -- it's just voluntary on his part.)
Sweden is an interesting country, in part because its doom has been widely forecasted on the Right for, roughly, ever. I started reading National Review in my high school library in 9th grade in 1972. At the end of the school year in June 1973, the librarian told me they were tossing out all the issues of National Review from 1969-1971 to free up space, and did I want them? So, I read two or three years worth of back issues over the summer. I came away convinced -- among much else (14 is an impressionable age) -- that Sweden was about to collapse at any moment.
Sweden tends to represent one extreme pole of Northern Europeanishness. But, there's also much that's idiosyncratic to Sweden that distinguishes it even from other Nordic countries. Even for bookish Americans, its history -- like that of most countries besides England and France -- is kind of a blur. Although I probably know more isolated facts about Sweden than most other countries -- Vikings, Gustavus Adolphus, that other king who was like Gustavus Adolphus, the playwright Strindsen (Ibsberg?), Pippi Longstocking, and that furniture that comes in really heavy cardboard boxes -- I have little idea how it fits together.
By Steve Sailer on 6/16/2013