Sweden 

Sweden and the Coronavirus

So everyone in the world now knows that when it comes to dealing with the coronavirus Sweden has gone its own way. In fact it seems to be in a very small minority (along with the Netherlands) when it comes to how it has responded as a nation. It is not in lockdown and, as yet, has no plans to be in lockdown. It doesn’t even has plans to quarantine Stockholm which is by far the worst affected region. If you want the numbers and compare Sweden to other countries,…

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Reviews Sweden 

Book Review: A Utopia like any other

A Utopia Like Any Other: Inside the Swedish Model by Dominic Hinde My rating: 4 of 5 stars Sweden, for a relatively small country, occupies a rather large role in global discussions. It is held up as either an example of statist groupthink or an ecological utopia. Swedes themselves would never call it a utopia but they would also unquestionably say the world would be a better place if everywhere else was more like Sweden (just with better weather). In this highly readable book, journalist Dominic Hinde takes you on…

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Sweden 

The Curiosity Index: Swedish Edition

There are a few pieces here that should reveal a lot about some of the best and less than best features of Swedish culture. I’ll let you decide which is which. Swedish priest defrocked A priest in the Svenska Kyrkan (Church of Sweden) had their orders revoked just before Christmas for, earlier in the year, telling a confirmation group that homosexual relationships go against the Bible. As Daniel Ringdahl (in Swedish) points out in the Church of Sweden you can be an archbishop even if you question the Virgin Birth…

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Sweden 

Christianity has a problem with science in Sweden

Sweden is a secular country. That’s not news. The more interesting question is why? There is of course no one single answer – there are lots of answers and each one is a part of the puzzle. But one big piece of the puzzle seems to be that secular Swedes seem to have concluded en masse that science has disproved religion. Which is charmingly naive but they seem to have swallowed that so thoroughly that it’s going to be really hard to shift. So why do I say that? Consider…

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Sweden 

Sweden is in the red

It’s fairly well known that Sweden is a pretty secular place. If you’ll click through here you’ll see that four years ago I wrote about a map that showed the countries where the evangelical church is growing. All over the world. There were also a handful of countries where the evangelical church was growing but not quite as fast as the host population (the UK being one of those) and then there were about 4 countries where the evangelical church is declining (and Sweden is one of those). So I…

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Sweden 

Was Sweden ever a Christian country?

It’s reasonably well-known that Sweden is one of the most agnostic or atheistic countries on the planet. Their lack of interest in all things related to the church is famous. Couple that with their generally ordered, well-run, democratic and prosperous society and Sweden has become the poster-country for secular people everywhere. But was Sweden ever really Christian? If we mean did Sweden have an official state religion then the answer is yes – Sweden had a state religion and a state church for centuries right up until 2000. If by…

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Sweden 

Where did Swedish schooling go wrong?

Tyler Cowen links to some new research about the Swedish education system.  Both of our children are in this system so it’s a pretty important issue for us and it doesn’t make for happy reading. The Swedish school system suffers from profound problems with teacher recruitment and retention, knowledge decline,and grade inflation. Absenteeism is high, and psychiatric disorders have risen sharply among Swedish pupils in the last ten years. In this pioneering analysis of the consequences of combining institutionalized social constructivism with extensive marketization of education, we suggest that these…

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Sweden 

Sweden (doesn’t) decide

Sweden voted in its four-yearly general election on Sunday. We were able to vote in the local and county elections but not yet the national as our citizenship application has not yet been processed. The big question was how big would the nationalists (Sweden Democrats) share of the vote be? And the answer was bigger than before. So despite the fact that 83% of the Swedish electorate did NOT vote for them the focus was still on the 17% that do. That would make them the second-biggest party. So what…

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