Fascism is on the rise again in Europe and beyond its historical heartland. Its current revival is linked to a global resurgence of ‘post-fascist’ radical nationalism centered on monoculturalism, gender essentialism and anti-immigrant, anti-egalitarian, and anti-establishment opinion.
The Nordic countries are not immune to these developments. The democratic welfare states of Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark have in recent years experienced an upsurge in fascist-inspired activities, including rising levels of hate crime and political violence. Fascist parties enjoy increased visibility and fascism has a strong online presence through radical nationalist social media platforms, misinformation experts, and digital media hubs that denigrate established democratic political institutions.
Transnational nationalism is by no means a novelty. Radical nationalists have interacted and evolved across their respective national borders since the inception of the first fascist movements in the 1910s. This is also true for fascism in the Nordic countries, which throughout its hundred years of history has transcended national borders in various complex and formative ways.
NORFAS contends that to understand the formation, transformations and recurrent appeal of fascism, individual Nordic countries cannot be the sole unit of analysis. Neither will a comparative study of fascism in Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland suffice. We therefore use the perspective of entangled history to study the centennial development of fascist thought, practices and culture in the Nordic countries.