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Den sociala differentieringens retorik och gestaltning: Kritiska perspektiv på funktionalistisk förorts- och bostadsplanering i Stockholm från 1900-talets mitt
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Culture and Aesthetics.
2016 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
The rhetoric and realisation of social differentiation : Critical perspectives on functionalistic suburban and housing planning in mid-20th century (English)
Abstract [en]

In this thesis, I analys suburb- and housing planning and interior decoration carried out primarily in Stockholm between the 1930s and the 1950s. Functionalism, the overall concept of the period, has perhaps been interpreted in terms of ideological concepts, interpreted as "democratic" and as a progressive dividing line between the past and the future. I examine how housing and suburban planning in Sweden in the mid-20th century was affected by how housing and town planning related to that period's clear class boundaries and well-defined gender roles. I analyse both rhetoric and physical planning. Whether the architect had explicit ambitions to achieve spatial differentiation of socio-economic categories, how suburban planners dealt with their historical inheritance and the principles about categorisation and spatial separation. I also analyse how ideas of class, gender and spatial differentiation of family members affected the organisation and design of rooms in the housing planning of the mid-20th century. The general conclusion of the thesis as a whole is that ideas about class, sex and familial hierarchy were reflected in functionalist housing and interior decoration. The planned suburbs in Stockholm involved explicit strategies for differentiating population categories in different suburbs. The planned suburbs, which were regarded as paradigmatic cases for the suburban planning of the period, involved explicit strategies for differentiating population categories in different suburbs, a strategy that was concretised in physical suburban planning. Terraced housing in one area, småstugor in another, blocks of flats in a third, detached houses in a fourth. Sociological arguments justified this type of suburban planning. The emotional affinity between neighbours was considered to be better if the neighbours belong to the same socio economic category. Planned homes, which were regarded as paradigmatic cases for the housing planning of this period, involved explicit strategies for differentiating family members into different rooms, distinguishing between private and public rooms within the sphere of the home, a strategy that was concretised in physical housing planning. I analyse how the magazine's editorial content contributed to producing a middle-class housing ideal. A central aspect of modern housing planning and the debate in around 1930 was the launch of the home as an essentially private sphere. The editorial team behind the magazine Hem i Sverige launched the home as a reaction against the idea of the home as essentially a private sphere, with a clear spatial hierarchy and division between different family members, between private and public spheres. I examined the participation of the Nordiska Kompaniet department store in the 1930 Stockholm exhibition. As an influential commercial actor, the store's management had a strategy of combining consumption with both benefit and enjoyment, dreams, pastimes and goal-oriented purchases. The starting point for Nordiska Kompaniet's interior decoration approach was the organisation and content of the upper middle-class home. The drawing rooms, the dining room, the serving area, the homes with clear dividing lines between private and public sphere. Family structures and familial hierarchy were emphasised on the basis of the upper middle-class family's tradition.


Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Institutionen för kultur och estetik, Stockholms universitet , 2016. , 243 p.
Keyword [en]
Swedish welfare state, Stockholm, Functionalism, Suburban planning, City planning, Urban Policy, Differentiation, Segregation, Spatial separation, Housing planning, Interior decoration, Upper middle-class, Private sphere, Public sphere, Gender coded rooms, Consumption
National Category
Research subject
Art History
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-125914ISBN: 978-91-7649-317-5OAI: diva2:896054
Public defence
2016-02-25, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 10:00 (Swedish)
Forskarskolan för estetiska vetenskaper
Available from: 2016-02-02 Created: 2016-01-20 Last updated: 2016-03-02Bibliographically approved

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