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The population discourse : a transnational matrix ; the case of Germany and Sweden

Der Bevölkerungsdiskurs : eine transnationale Matrix ; Deutschland and Schweden im Vergleich
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Etzemüller, Thomas

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Abstract "Since the 19th century, the question of population has been discussed in the form of a specific matrix. Population is described as human capital. It can serve a modern nation as a resource if it is biologically and socially optimized, but could also pose a threat if 'degeneration' escalates. Thus, the demographic question is always dealt with in a dualistic manner. The human capitals' 'valuable' part does not breed enough children, the socially or biologically problematic or even 'substandard' part of the population produces far too much offspring. The fact that this pattern shapes the speaking about population transnationally, can be shown by comparing such very different social systems like Sweden and Germany." (author's abstract)
Keywords Sweden; Federal Republic of Germany; historical development; population development; comparative research; welfare state; nineteenth century; twentieth century; biotechnology policy; regulation; population; Malthus, T.; genetics; theory; race; biological factors; declining birth rate; discourse; transnationalization
Classification Population Studies, Sociology of Population; Social History, Historical Social Research
Method historical; theory application
Document language English
Publication Year 2011
Page/Pages p. 101-119
Journal Historical Social Research, 36 (2011) 2
Issue topic Fertilität in der Geschichte des 20. Jahrhunderts: Trends, Theorien, Politik, Diskurse
ISSN 0172-6404
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works