Themes

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Industry

Caspar Jørgensen

Industry - From mills to computers

Even though Denmark is known as an agricultural nation, industry has played a major role in the development of the welfare state. Around 1840, factories began to appear in earnest, and soon more were working industrial jobs than in agriculture. And between 1930 and 1970, the industrial sector was…

World War II

Niels Wium Olesen

World War II - Sleeping with the enemy

The German occupation in 1940-45 was the most dramatic episode in Denmark in the last hundred years. Compared with the brutality other Nazi occupied countries faced, conditions in Denmark were mild, and the democratic system functioned during most of the Occupation. But the price for the…

Denmark as a colonial power

Birgitte Holten

Denmark as a colonial power - Spices, sugar, slaves and a special relationship

Denmark has had colonies in places as exotic at Tranquebar in the east, and St Croix in the west. Even though Denmark was only a minor colonial power, it was at times profitable. Two of the original northern colonies, the Faroe Islands and Greenland, remain a part of the Kingdom of Denmark.

Crime and punishment

Tyge Krogh

Crime and punishment - From the noose to the electric tag

That crime doesn't pay is something punishment has always needed to prove. But the way criminals are punished has changed radically down through history. At one point capital punishment was common, and the sentence was often justified by citing God's law". Today, criminals need not…

The social welfare state

Klaus Petersen

The social welfare state - Paradise found?

In the years following World War II, Denmark became a welfare society. It is tempting to think of the developments as a clearly defined project, but that fails to take into account the coincidental interplay between the political visions and the actual changes. No-one in 1945 could have predicted…

Planned and unplanned towns and cities

Ulla Tofte

Planned and unplanned towns and cities - Urban development, from castle to council

The evolution of urban planning in Denmark begins with the star-shaped street layout that had castles or churches at their centres. The development includes the French-inspired designs that served as monuments to royal power and today’s municipal planning. But some elements such as the use of…

The cradle of democracy

Uffe Jakobsen

The cradle of democracy - From absolute monarchy to parliamentarism

Starting in the 1830s and until 1915, three decisive changes were implemented that were crucial for the development of democracy in Denmark. Citizens were given a legislature, the right to vote was expanded from just a small percentage of the population to nearly all adults and the introduction of …

Relations with Sweden

Anders Linde-Laursen

Relations with Sweden - Neighbours, for better and for worse

Denmark and Sweden have always had a special relationship. For many years, we were engaged in open warfare for power, territory and control of Øresund, the Sound between Denmark and Sweden. When the wars ended, our arch enemy" became the epitome of everything that wasn't Danish.…

The Cold War

Thomas Wegener Friis

The Cold War - The Russians never came

No sooner was World War II over than a new war had begun. Until the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Cold War divided not just the world, it also divided countries and even families. It was a conflict that pitted democracy against dictatorship, and with both sides armed with nuclear weapons, it was a…

European stories

Per Nyholm

European stories - Europe - the beautiful story

From cannons to coffee tables. Denmark and Europe across a cultural millennium.

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