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Iceland: Ever-Lasting Independence Struggle

  • Eirikur Bergmann
Chapter

Abstract

Iceland’s national identity was carved out in the more than 100 years’ long independence struggle from Denmark. Since then, an ever-lasting independence struggle has been embedded in the tiny country’s politics, based on a fundamental belief in its formal sovereignty, which still dictates the country’s foreign relations. Fascist or Nazi parties never gained much ground in Icelandic politics in the interwar years, only factions of that sort survived within mainstream parties on the right, which will be analysed in this chapter.

   During the financial crisis of 2008, a completely renewed leadership took over the country’s old agrarian party, the Progressive Party (PP), which was rapidly retuned in a more populist direction—geared against foreign creditors, international institutions and eventually partly towards anti-Muslim rhetoric, which until then had been absent in the country (there is no significant Muslim minority in Iceland). In a 2016 leadership change, the party reverted back to its mainstream roots while a more fringe Icelandic National Front was established on a firm nationalist populist platform.

   This chapter contextualizes developments in Icelandic politics since the nineteenth century and analyses its emphasis on independence and sovereignty. Then I will map the political movements, which can be understood to either be nationalistic or populist, and analyse whether examples of populist communication documented in the proposed research can be found within the Progressive Party’s discourse under leadership of Sigmundur Gunnlaugsson between 2009 and 2016.

Keywords

National Identity Asylum Seeker European Monetary Union Foreign Relation Debt Relief 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eirikur Bergmann
    • 1
  1. 1.Bifrost UniversityReykjavikIceland

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