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New Left Review I/34, November-December 1965


Goran Therborn

The Swedish Left

The general societal setting of contemporary Swedish politics has been analysed elsewhere [1] ‘Power in the Kingdom of Sweden’, International Socialist Journal, Vol. 2, No. 7. by the present writer in terms of the combination of—to use Gramscian categories—working-class political dominance with a continuing latent hegemony of the bourgeoisie. This situation has positive implications for left-wing action and thinking. Working-class political dominance offers left-wing projects a higher degree of realistic possibility than is common in a bourgeois-dominated country. And the latent nature of bourgeois hegemony in Sweden—where it is not derived from a mystical legitimation of a bourgeois right to rule but is based almost exclusively on the economic role of the bourgeoisie—confers a certain intellectual openness upon the social system.

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