Capitalism Under Attack: Economic Elites and Social Movements in Post-War Finland
For Finland, the post-war era began in September 1944 when it switched sides in the Second World War. The country, which had fought alongside Germany against the Soviet Union from the summer of 1941 onwards, was now left within the Soviet sphere of influence. In this altered political situation, new social movements, in particular those led by communists and other leftist activists, challenged the existing economic and political order. However, this article argues that the traditional economic elites were remarkably successful in defending their interests. When the ‘years of danger’, as the period 1944–1948 has been called in Finland, ended, it remained a country with traditional Western-style parliamentary democracy and a capitalist economic system.