the almost nearly perfect people behind the myth of the scandinavian utopia

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The Almost Nearly Perfect People

Author : Michael Booth
ISBN : 9781250061973
Genre : Travel
File Size : 31. 72 MB
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NAMED THE #1 BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR, A WITTY, INFORMATIVE, AND POPULAR TRAVELOGUE ABOUT THE SCANDINAVIAN COUNTRIES AND HOW THEY MAY NOT BE AS HAPPY OR AS PERFECT AS WE ASSUME Journalist Michael Booth has lived among the Scandinavians for more than ten years, and he has grown increasingly frustrated with the rose-tinted view of this part of the world offered up by the Western media. In this timely book he leaves his adopted home of Denmark and embarks on a journey through all five of the Nordic countries to discover who these curious tribes are, the secrets of their success, and, most intriguing of all, what they think of one another. Why are the Danes so happy, despite having the highest taxes? Do the Finns really have the best education system? Are the Icelanders as feral as they sometimes appear? How are the Norwegians spending their fantastic oil wealth? And why do all of them hate the Swedes? In The Almost Nearly Perfect People Michael Booth explains who the Scandinavians are, how they differ and why, and what their quirks and foibles are, and he explores why these societies have become so successful and models for the world. Along the way a more nuanced, often darker picture emerges of a region plagued by taboos, characterized by suffocating parochialism, and populated by extremists of various shades. They may very well be almost nearly perfect, but it isn't easy being Scandinavian.

The Almost Nearly Perfect People

Author : Michael Booth
ISBN : 9781448192281
Genre : Travel
File Size : 49. 31 MB
Format : PDF, Docs
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'The next Bill Bryson.’ New York Times Winner of the Best Narrative Travel Book Award from the British Guild of Travel Writers The Danes are the happiest people in the world, and pay the highest taxes. 'Neutral' Sweden is one of the biggest arms manufacturers in the world. Finns have the largest per capita gun ownership after the US and Yemen. 54 per cent of Icelanders believe in elves. Norway is the richest country on earth. 5 per cent of Danish men have had sex with an animal. Michael Booth has lived among the Scandinavians, on and off, for over ten years, perplexed by their many strange paradoxes and character traits and equally bemused by the unquestioning enthusiasm for all things Nordic and hygge that has engulfed the rest of the world. He leaves his adopted home of Denmark and embarks on a journey through all five of the Nordic countries to discover who these curious tribes are, the secrets of their success and, most intriguing of all, what they think of each other. Along the way a more nuanced, often darker picture emerges of a region plagued by taboos, characterised by suffocating parochialism and populated by extremists of various shades.

The Nordic Theory Of Everything

Author : Anu Partanen
ISBN : 9780062316561
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 58. 5 MB
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A Finnish journalist, now a naturalized American citizen, asks Americans to draw on elements of the Nordic way of life to nurture a fairer, happier, more secure, and less stressful society for themselves and their children. Moving to America in 2008, Finnish journalist Anu Partanen quickly went from confident, successful professional to wary, self-doubting mess. She found that navigating the basics of everyday life—from buying a cell phone and filing taxes to education and childcare—was much more complicated and stressful than anything she encountered in her homeland. At first, she attributed her crippling anxiety to the difficulty of adapting to a freewheeling new culture. But as she got to know Americans better, she discovered they shared her deep apprehension. To understand why life is so different in the U.S. and Finland, Partanen began to look closely at both. In The Nordic Theory of Everything, Partanen compares and contrasts life in the United States with life in the Nordic region, focusing on four key relationships—parents and children, men and women, employees and employers, and government and citizens. She debunks criticism that Nordic countries are socialist “nanny states,” revealing instead that it is we Americans who are far more enmeshed in unhealthy dependencies than we realize. As Partanen explains step by step, the Nordic approach allows citizens to enjoy more individual freedom and independence than we do. Partanen wants to open Americans’ eyes to how much better things can be—to show her beloved new country what it can learn from her homeland to reinvigorate and fulfill the promise of the American dream—to provide the opportunity to live a healthy, safe, economically secure, upwardly mobile life for everyone. Offering insights, advice, and solutions, The Nordic Theory of Everything makes a convincing argument that we can rebuild our society, rekindle our optimism, and restore true freedom to our relationships and lives.

The Year Of Living Danishly

Author : Helen Russell
ISBN : 9781848318137
Genre : Travel
File Size : 29. 14 MB
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'A hugely enjoyable romp through the pleasures and pitfalls of setting up home in a foreign land' PD Smith, Guardian When she was suddenly given the opportunity of a new life in rural Jutland, journalist and archetypal Londoner Helen Russell discovered a startling statistic: the happiest place on earth isn’t Disneyland, but Denmark, a land often thought of by foreigners as consisting entirely of long dark winters, cured herring, Lego and pastries. What is the secret to their success? Are happy Danes born, or made? Helen decides there is only one way to find out: she will give herself a year, trying to uncover the formula for Danish happiness. From childcare, education, food and interior design (not to mention 'hygge') to SAD, taxes, sexism and an unfortunate predilection for burning witches, The Year of Living Danishly is a funny, poignant record of a journey that shows us where the Danes get it right, where they get it wrong, and how we might just benefit from living a little more Danishly ourselves.

A History Of Denmark

Author : Knud J. V. Jespersen
ISBN : 9780230345423
Genre : History
File Size : 53. 60 MB
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The history of modern Denmark is essentially the story of how a once extensive and diverse empire slowly fragmented under the changing circumstances of the times. In this introductory guide, Knud J. V. Jespersen traces the process of disintegration and reduction which helped to form the modern Danish state, and the historical roots of Denmark's international position. Beginning with the Reformation in the sixteenth century, Jespersen explains how the Denmark of today was shaped by wars, territorial losses, domestic upheavals, new methods of production, and changes in thought. Thoroughly revised and updated in light of the most recent research, this second edition includes new discussions of the Danish Enlightenment, Denmark's role in World War II, the Cartoon Crisis of 2006 and current NATO debates, bringing the diverse and turbulent history of the country right up to the present day.

The Age Of Social Democracy

Author : Francis Sejersted
ISBN : 9780691147741
Genre : History
File Size : 77. 16 MB
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This is the history of how two countries on the northern edge of Europe built societies in the twentieth century that became objects of inspiration and envy around the world. Francis Sejersted, one of Scandinavia's leading historians, tells how Norway and Sweden achieved a rare feat by realizing grand visions of societies that combine stability, prosperity, and social welfare. It is a history that holds many valuable lessons today, at a time of renewed interest in the Scandinavian model. The book tells the story of social democracy from the separation of Norway and Sweden in 1905 through the end of the century, tracing its development from revolutionary beginnings through postwar triumph, as it became a hegemonic social order that left its stamp on every sector of society, the economy, welfare, culture, education, and family. The book also tells how in the 1980s, partly in reaction to the strong state, a freedom and rights revolution led to a partial erosion of social democracy. Yet despite the fracturing of consensus and the many economic and social challenges facing Norway and Sweden today, the achievement of their welfare states remains largely intact.

Sushi And Beyond

Author : Michael Booth
ISBN : 9780099516446
Genre : Cooking, Japanese
File Size : 61. 35 MB
Format : PDF, Mobi
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Japan is the pre-eminent food nation on earth. The creativity of the Japanese, their dedication and ingenuity, not to mention courage in the face of dishes such as cod sperm and octopus ice cream, is only now beginning to be fully appreciated in the sushi-saturated West, as are the remarkable health benefits of the traditional Japanese diet. Food and travel writer Michael Booth sets of to take the culinary pulse of contemporary Japan and he and his young family travel the length of the country - from bear-infested, beer-loving Hokkaido to snake-infested, seaweed-loving Okinawa. What do the Japanese know about food? Perhaps more than anyone else on earth, judging by this fascinating and funny journey through an extraordinary food-obsessed country. Winner of the Guild of Food Writers Kate Whiteman Award for the best book on food and travel.

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