Representation, Nation and Time. The Political - JYX front page

Representation, Nation and Time. The Political - JYX front page


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Jussi Kurunmäki



ISBN 951-39-0825-9 (nid.), 978-951-39-5223-5 (PDF) ISSN 0075-4625 Copyright © 2000, by Jussi Kurunmäki and University of Jyväskylä Jyväskylän yliopistopaino and Sisäsuomi Oy, Jyväskylä

ABSTRACT Kurunmäki, Jussi Representation, Nation and Time. The Political Rhetoric of the 1866 Parliamentary Reform in Sweden. Jyväskylä, University of Jyväskylä, 2000. 262 p. (Jyväskylä Studies in Education, Psychology and Social Research, ISSN 0075-4625; 170). ISBN 951-39-0825-9 (nid.), 978-951-39-5223-5 (PDF) Tiivistelmä: Edustus, kansakunta ja aika. Poliittinen retoriikka Ruotsin vuoden 1866 valtiopäiväreformissa. Diss. In several European reform campaigns since the French Revolution, the represented have been viewed in terms of a “nation”, as opposed to the particular interests and privileges of estates and orders. In Sweden, the political Estates – Nobility, Clergy, Burghers, and Peasants – were abolished in 1866 and substituted by a bicameral body of representation. This dissertation analyses the rhetoric of “national representation” in the debate on the 1866 Parliamentary Reform. The debate is analysed by applying methods of conceptual history and rhetorical analysis. Political concepts are understood as historical and contested in regards to their meanings. Special attention is paid to rhetorical redescriptions of the existing political situation as well as political tradition. By focusing on the political language the political actors used, the study aims to go beyond common explanations of the reform, which take the reform as a consequence of structural changes in society or view it as a part of general progress of democratisation. The debate is analysed against a historical and theoretical background. The Swedish national liberals used “national” and “patriotic” rhetoric in their campaign for the abolition of political Estates. The reform proposal was characterised as a “rebirth of the nation”. Moreover, a rhetoric of “public opinion” and “progress” was used in the debate on the reform proposal. There were two main understandings of the concept of “national representation” in the debate. It referred to the traditional institution of representation and included the four Estates. The concept was also understood as being based on individual citizens. The Estates were thus excluded form the concept of “the nation”. However, this understanding was also attached to political privileges due to its application of the census. After the reform, the right to vote was as restricted as it had been before. The national liberal supporters of the Bill watered down their republican brand of patriotism by combining it with the ethos of togetherness, which in turn was based on common origin and tradition. Keywords: nation, representation, patriotism, political rhetoric, conceptual history, parliamentary reforms, Sweden

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS It is a lonely business to write a dissertation. Yet, one cannot do it alone. During many years of researching and writing, I have been fortunate to gain inspiring and kind help from many colleagues, friends and institutions. It is a great pleasure for me to acknowledge these debts. As a young student at the University of Jyväskylä, I first became interested in political science in the 1980s. Kari Palonen first made me realise that the study of politics might be exiting. Kari has been my supervisor during all these years. It is hard to imagine this study being started, not to mention being finished, without his intelligent comments and encouraging support. My thanks also to the Department of Social Sciences and Philosophy in Jyväskylä. This dissertations was written at the Department of Political Science at the University of Stockholm. What was initially intended to be a visit has now become a several years stay. Björn Wittrock kindly took me as a visiting graduate student. Björn and his students have offered me an intellectual atmosphere which has been friendly and inspiring. Maud Eduards and Claes Linde have made my stay at the department possible and pleasant. Thank you all. Apart from universities of Jyväskylä and Stockholm, I have always been kindly welcomed at the Renvall Institute, University of Helsinki. Henrik Stenius has incorporated me in the academic milieu which I am proud of having been part of. I would also like to thank Matti Hyvärinen and the Finnish Project of Conceptual History for enabling me to join the scholarly discussions the project has generated. Matti and Henrik have read the manuscript and provided me with invaluable comments. Peter Hallberg and Birgir Hermansson have read and reread final versions of the chapters of this work. Their suggestions and practical help cannot be over-evaluated. I am also grateful to Magnus Enzell and Jacob Westberg who have read parts of an earlier version of the study. I am greatly indebted to Michelle Ariga and Elliot Head for helping me with the language. Any errors in this book are due to the additions I have made afterwards. This project has been financially supported by Alfred Kordelinin rahasto, University of Jyväskylä, Väinö Tannerin säätiö, Letterstedtska föreningen, VAKAVA, NorFA, Oskar Öflunds stiftelse, and Suomen Kulttuurirahasto. I would also like to thank Sakari Hänninen, Marja Keränen, Pauli Kettunen, Heino Nyyssönen, and Kari Saastamoinen, as well as my friends in Helsinki. My warm gratitude is indebted to my mother and father who have always supported me. Finally, I want to thank Tatja Hirvikoski, who with her love and sharp mind made the hardest part of the work possible. Stockholm, October 2000

CONTENTS PART ONE: INTRODUCTION 1 INTRODUCTION .................................................................................................11 2 THE FORMATION OF 1866 RIKSDAG ACT .................................................... 27 2.1 Actors, factions, strategies ........................................................................... 27 2.2 The campaigns against and for the reform .................................................. 34 2.3 The final vote ............................................................................................... 39 3 COMMON INTERPRETATIONS ON THE REFORM OF 1866 ........................ 43 3.1 Social changes and the demands of the times.............................................. 43 3.2 The significance of the reform..................................................................... 50 4 A RHETORICAL ANALYSIS OF KEY CONCEPTS USED IN THE DEBATE ......... ..................................................................................................... 61 4.1 Historicising and rhetoricising the reform ................................................... 61 4.2 On the conditions of histories of concepts across time ............................... 63 4.3 Rhetorical aspect of conceptual change....................................................... 68 4.4 Historical aspect of a rhetorical situation .................................................... 71 PART TWO: THEMES

5 NATION AND POLITICAL REPRESENTATION .............................................. 75 5.1 On the history of the concepts of ”representation” before the French Revolution ................................................................................................... 76 5.2 The combination of ”representation” and ”nation” during the French Revolution ................................................................................................... 82 5.3 On the language of ”nation” and ”patriotism”............................................. 88 5.4 Breakthrough of the idea of national representation in Prussia ................... 94 5.5 Prominent ”liberal” reflections on ”representation” and ”nation” in the nineteenth century .................................................................................. 98 5.5.1 Modern liberty, property and capacities, and the separation of powers: Benjamin Constant and François Guizot............................ 98 5.5.2 Against the tyranny of majority: Alexis de Tocqueville ................ 104 5.5.3 John Stuart Mill and representative government ........................... 107 6 TEMPORAL ASPECTS OF A CONSTITUTIONAL CHANGE ........................113 6.1 Revolutionary constitution as a ’year zero’ ................................................113 6.2 Traditionalism vs. natural rights of men: Edmund Burke vs. Thomas Paine ...........................................................................................................117 6.3 Language of progress................................................................................. 125

PART THREE: ANALYSIS 7 ON THE HISTORY OF NATIONAL REPRESENTATION IN SWEDEN ....... 133 7. 1 Introduction of the concept of ”national representation” in Sweden in 1809-10 ..................................................................................................... 133 7.2 On the Swedish history of political representation .................................... 140 7.3 Geijer’s two conceptions of ”national representation” .............................. 146 7.4 ”Liberal” initiatives to ”national representation” ...................................... 159 8 DEBATE ON THE PRINCIPLES OF REPRESENTATION IN SWEDEN, 1860—1865 ..... ................................................................................................... 165 8.1 The “principle of persons” and representation of interests........................ 165 8.2 Separation of powers, bicameral representation, and parliamentary government ................................................................................................ 176 9 ”NATION”, ”FATHERLAND”, AND “PATRIOTIC CITIZEN” IN THE RHETORIC OF REPRESENTATION................................................................ 191 9.1 Identification with ”the nation” and ”the fatherland” ................................ 191 9.2 Ethos of togetherness and pathos of obligation ......................................... 200 9.2 On patriotic citizen .................................................................................... 204 10 TEMPORAL ASPECTS OF THE PARLIAMENTARY REFORM ................... 207 10.1 ”Public opinion”, deliberation and consequences of daily politics ........... 208 10.2 Redescription of the constitution of 1809 and the Riksdag Act of 1810.. ..........................................................................................................211 10.3 The historical role of the Estates ............................................................... 213 10.4 Continuity and constitutional change ........................................................ 219 11 CONCLUSION ................................................................................................... 233 TIIVISTELMÄ REFERENCES





The purpose of this study is to analyse the rhetoric of “nation” in the debates on the 1866 Riksdag Act in Sweden. My main question is, what was understood by “national representation”? In other words, the reform of political representation deals with the questions what and who are to be represented, and by what means. Since the French Revolution, the represented were viewed in several European pro-reform campaigns in terms of “the nation” as opposed to particular interests and privileges of estates and orders. This led to a contest over the right meaning of the term “the nation”, a contest which became one of the main issues of political struggles in nineteenth-century Europe. By analysing the rhetoric of “the nation” in the Swedish reform of political representation, it is possible to make a case of an important period of the formation of the modern nation-state, when the political Estates were replaced by something else which was supposed to represent “the whole”. For example, a pro-reform journal Politisk Tidskrift stated in 1863 that the question of parliamentary reform is the question of “a political rebirth of the nation” (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1862 [1863], 138). In addition, the analysis of the rhetoric of “the nation” offers me an opportunity to study the political aspects of the concepts of “citizen” and “patriot” in the context where political “persons” entered into the arena of parliamentary politics. Also, my study of the rhetorical and conceptual conditions of the debate gives a new perspective on the role of the Riksdag Act of 1866 in relation to political democratisation in Sweden. In 1866, the political Estates 1 — Nobility, Clergy, Burghers, and Peasants — gave way to the bicameral Diet in which the chambers were equal in power, but different in terms of socio-economic background. The political atmosphere was somewhat tense in Stockholm during the first days of December, 1865. The 1

I use capital letters when I refer to the political Estates that represented the people at the Riksdag.

12 destiny of the Government’s reform Bill was in the hands of the Noble Estate. The Burghers and the Peasants had been in favour, and the Clergy waited for the Nobility. The radical “national liberal” press pushed for the Bill, voluntary military “rifle clubs” demonstrated their manpower, and the Government’s troops were gathered in Stockholm. The crucial question was whether the Nobility was ready to abolish itself as a political Estate. The problem the conservative opponents of the Government’s Bill faced was that they were against the Bill which was presented in the name of the King. In short, patriotism that grew from the loyalty towards the monarchy and the state was now in conflict with the patriotism that was based on the estate privileges, and on the honour these privileges created. The Nobility voted for the reform Bill on December 7, 1865. According to the 1866 Riksdag Act, the suffrage was limited by a high census in the case of the Second Chamber, and by even higher tax and property qualifications in the First Chamber. 2 Only about six per cent of the population were able to partake in Parliamentary elections, which represented about 20 per cent of the adult male population. The election was joint and direct to the Second Chamber, indirect to the First Chamber, which was elected by the Provincial Councils and by the representatives of the larger towns. Only 6000 men were eligible as candidates for to the First Chamber The Minister of Justice, Baron Louis De Geer, has been attributed as having created the 1866 reform. He took the initiative and wrote the proposal for the reform. In his statement to the minutes of the Council of the State, he defended the need for a reform by maintaining that “the changes in the nation and of the times requires changes to the form of representation” (e.g. CentralKomité 1864, 17). The issue of political representation was clearly a “national” matter in Sweden in the 1860s. As Politisk Tidskrift argued, the reform dealt with the rebirth of the nation. Those who opposed the Bill, in turn, often claimed that the proposal was not based on a national political tradition (e.g. KU 7 1863, 14-21; Nordström 1865, 90). On the one hand, the struggle for the Parliamentary Reform dealt with a redefinition of a polity, i.e. the political nation. On the other hand, and more often, “the nation” was used as a rhetorical tool in order to legitimise the need, or the lack of need, for the reform in the debates. There were thus two different, yet not mutually exclusive, views of “representation” and “nation”, the one that took as its point of departure the idea of nation-by-representation and the other that was based on the idea of representation-by nation. Such ideal typical constitutive and legitimising uses of “the nation” in the debate on the reform of representation can be related to different views on “representation”, for there is an — albeit sometimes unclear — link between, on the one hand, the constitutive use of “the nation” and a constructive model of representation, and, on the other hand, between the legitimising use of “the nation” and a descriptive model of representation. According to the former model of representation, a collective


This means the upper chamber, not the lower as is the case in Britain.

13 has no prior form before it is represented; according to the latter, the purpose of the representation is to replicate social reality in its diversity (Jones 2000, 17). Accordingly, there is a close relationship between the concepts of “representation” and “nation” in modern political representation. This relationship between “representation” and “nation” is not solid and unchanging, as noted by Hanna Pitkin: The history of representative government and the expansion of the suffrage is one long record of changing demands for representation based on changing concepts of what are politically relevant features to be represented. The nation is not like a geographic area to be mapped – solidly there, more or less unchanging, certainly not changed by the mapmaking process. (Pitkin 1967, 87).

Reforms of political representation therefore often involve conceptual innovations and changes. It is hence important to pay special attention to conceptual histories and conceptual changes when a parliamentary reform is analysed. The concepts “representation” and “nation” was presented first during the French Revolution by Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès who stated in his Qu’est-ce que le Tiers Etat? that a nation is “a body of associates living under common laws and represented by the same legislative assembly “ (Sieyès 1963, 58). Following Sieyès’ argument, it is possible to maintain that a nation is ‘established’ only after the creation of an independent organ of representation. Consequently, the combination of the sovereignty of the people with indirect participation in political decision making can be taken as a mark of the birth of a nation-state within which Universal Rights of Man were replaced by the exclusive rights of the citizen (Arendt 1973, 230-231). It can be noted that it was the representative system, rather than the Jacobin sovereignty of the people, which came to dominate the idea of the modern nation-state (Wokler 1998, 48-54). The combination of “representation” and “nation” was, together with the “social problem”, one of the main topics of the political debates in the era of parliamentary reforms in Europe (e.g. Podlech 1984, 509; Colley 1992, 336). My study will show that the French Revolution and its legacy in the nineteenth century was in the 1860s an important point of reference on both sides of the reform struggle in Sweden. In short, the debate on the reform of representation in the 1860s dealt with the question: What is a nation in regards to political representation? It was of great importance for the political actors to be able to show that representation was based on the national tradition instead of “theories” and that the proposed new representation was in accordance with this tradition. Because hardly anyone wanted to openly claim that the reform should be based on “theories”, it was important to be able to give the tradition an appropriate meaning. So, the reform debate was pretty much about interpretations on the past. A significant aspect of the Swedish understanding of constitutional reforms and democratisation is that the Swedish discussions of the political system have referred, and often still refer, to the domestic political tradition.

14 Accordingly, Rune Premfors has distinguished three different narratives of the democratisation of Sweden. First, there is an interpretation that there has been an ancient but lost democratic golden age, which means that democratisation has meant, or should mean, a way back into the past. The second narrative has the democratic golden age as a point of departure, but it is by no means lost. Instead, this narrative emphasises the legacy of freedom and continuity in Swedish political culture. The third narrative maintains the view that the history of Swedish democracy is a history of people’s movements. Then the process of democratisation is only a decades-long period instead of hundreds of years. (Premfors 2000, 115-116). Against this background the role of foreign impulses behind constitutional and parliamentary reforms has been an issue of some controversy. Especially in the case of the constitution 3 of 1809 there has been much scholarly debates on its possible Montesquieuan features. The reform of 1866 has been associated with Tocqueville by Gunnar Rexius and some of his followers (e.g. Rexius 1915). The weight of the domestic tradition has not been emphasised merely by ex post facto academic commentators, but also by the contemporary political actors. Accordingly, the rhetoric of domestic political tradition is one of the most important objects of this study. Yet, the future of “the fatherland” was in question when the reform Bill was debated. And all this was to be decided upon at once, in the present. Consequently, there was also a question of timing involved in the debate. It was asked, whether the moment was right for the reform. Different views on the nature of the domestic political tradition as well as on a constitutional change, the fact that the reform had been proposed several times during the last fifty years, and expectations of the future were all brought together in the present struggle over the reform. Accordingly, it was of the utmost importance to be able to argue with “time”. The past tense was the most important, for it was the ground for arguing in favour of as well as against the need of the reform. The future was much dependent on the interpretation of the past, yet it was quite obvious that those who could argue convincingly with the demands of the future were in a better rhetorical position in the debate. It was, after all, the future that was at issue. As opposed to common understandings of the reform, I shall argue that the reform was neither an automatic consequence of social and political demands of the times, nor an uncontested matter, as if the result of the struggle had been clear in advance for the contemporary political actors. It has often been interpreted that the realisation of the bicameral political representation and the replacement of the political Estates in 1866 was a more or less natural step in the course of political progress and a consequence of the changes in the society. In other words, the Riksdag Act of 1866 has usually been interpreted as a kind of necessary adjustment according to socio-economic demands and foreign constitutional examples. The Estates did not represent the social 3

I translate the name of the constitution, i.e. Regeringsform, into “the Instrument of Government” following the commonly used English translation in a later literature (e.g. Metcalf 1987a, 1).

15 interests adequately, goes the argument. The problem with this manner of reasoning is, however, that it often presents a story of progress which is linear and one-sided, as if there had been only one direction for political actions at time. It is, nevertheless, understandable that the necessity-line of explanations of the reform are so common, for they often originate directly from the empirical sources. The political actors themselves used this kind of rhetoric, as the above quoted statement of De Geer showed us. It is striking that this kind of rhetoric has not been an object of analysis, but instead it has been taken as unproblematic. On the contrary, the rhetoric of social and economic changes and “the demands of the times” needs to be analysed from the empirical sources. The role the other countries’ constitutions have played should be taken as a question of reception and not as inevitable influences, as well, for political “progress” must be struggled through in each and every country separately. I want to offer an understanding of the parliamentary reform, which stresses different political possibilities of the reform situation by taking seriously the political rhetoric the political actors of the struggle used and not reducing the reform merely to a consequence of some deeper reasons beyond the political agency. Such an understanding of a political reform has the aim to avoid a Whig historical view on a political change, according to which a change is explained anachronistically from later consequences of the change in question, and as a part of a linear process of progress. The idea can be formulated as follows: Inversely, inasmuch as the extension of the franchise in Western Europe in the course of the nineteenth century was achieved in a fairly gradual and peaceful manner, the temptation is to think that opposition to that process was not particularly strenuous. Nothing could be farther from the truth. (Hirschman 1991, 20).

In order to avoid a predestined interpretation on the reform due to ex post facto experiences, as well as to avoid repeating thoroughly done historical reconstructions of the Sachegeschichte around the reform, I will concentrate upon conceptual and rhetorical aspects of the reform struggle. When we take political and social concepts as historical and always at least potentially contested (e.g. Koselleck 1972, XXII), we can better understand that political struggles were not executed, for example, in terms of some clearly definable ‘isms’, but rather, political struggles often were (and still are) a matter of redefining what actually was the question in dispute. The reform debate is thus taken as a matter of a rhetorical redescription in relation to the key concepts involved in the debate (Skinner 1996a, 138-180). My concern is then in “namings”, “meanings”, “assessments of significance”, and “evaluations” of the central concepts that were used in the debate. This will be analysed against general European conceptions of “representation” and “nation” as well as against earlier uses of the concepts in Sweden, albeit in a selective manner. The debate in the 1860s is then analysed in relation to earlier relevant discussions

16 and conceptual histories. By this means, it is hoped to be able to give a historical and intellectual background to the primary sources of the study, for the aim is to give a historical context to the debate in question. There are three aspects of this approach. Firstly, it is possible to introduce a conceptual historical dimension to the historical debate. Secondly, the rhetorical analysis is historicised so that it goes beyond merely introducing the arguments, figures, and audiences of the rhetoric and thus pays attention to the uses of historical concepts. Thirdly, by employing the rhetorical and conceptual historical perspectives it is possible to shed new light on interpretations of Swedish parliamentary reforms, and on the reform of 1866 in particular. If we agree, as I do, with the view that new forms of political mobilisation took place during the first half of the nineteenth century in Sweden, we could perhaps agree with Lars Petterson, who claims that studies in the Swedish political history have focused too much on the established political institutions, for example on the institution of political representation, and thus left out the importance of other forms of political forums, such as, for instance, associations, clubs, and newspapers (Petterson 1993, 11). How, then, can we motivate a new study of parliamentary reform? My answer is that the study of institutionalised political representation is especially important during periods of change of political culture. It is not enough if we concentrate only upon new forms of political activity – however important it is – if we neglect the link between a political activity and institutional change. The change of the institution of political representation should be related to the changes of political activity. This relation can be studied in terms of discursive changes. Rhetorical analysis of an institutional change can bring light to the relationship between actions and institutions, for human actions create new grounds for institutional change and every institutional change means, at least potentially, new possibilities for political actions. In this study, the debate in the 1860s is analytically divided into three argumentative aspects which however overlap each other. Firstly, there is the debate on the principles of representation and its technical applications. My attention focuses on arguments which deal with some procedural aspects and the political role of the representative body. Discussions on the separation of powers as well as on parliamentary government are of main interest here. Secondly, there is the debate on the representation which is based on national and patriotic rhetoric. The relationship between “representation” and “nation” (or “fatherland”) is analysed both from the constitutive and legitimising perspectives. In addition, the concept of citizen denoting a political or nonpolitical member of the nation-polity is discussed in more detail. Thirdly, there is the rhetoric of “time” and different temporal commitments in the debate. The legitimising role of “time” is highlighted as the temporal dimensions of the rhetoric of “representation” and “nation” are brought together. As a comparative perspective, I shall pay special attention to interpretations on

17 British 4 parliamentary reforms. There are two main reasons to this: firstly, British parliamentary politics was in the nineteenth century a common point of reference in European countries; secondly, Swedish understanding of the constitutional development has often been associated with the English one (e.g. Fahlbeck 1904, 3). Historians and political scientists have usually noted that De Geer explicitly stated that the goal of the reform was to give the right to vote to the “politically thinking part of the nation”. It has also been noticed that the rhetoric of “nation” and “fatherland” were involved in the debates on the reform, especially in the last speeches at the House of Nobility (Riddarhuset) before the final voting on December 1865. The combination of plans for a Scandinavian Union and agitation for the parliamentary reform is also known to many scholars. Consequently, the concept of “nation” was a central one. For instance, Georg Andrén has paid attention to the idea of national representation behind the reform (Andrén 1937, 16-17). Rudolf Kjellén, in turn, has concluded that this idea was only partly carried out in 1866. The goal was not “the entirety of the nation” (nationens helhet), but instead, “the unity of the nation” (nationens enhet). The former means a universal suffrage, whereas the latter a joint yet exclusive suffrage. The realisation of the unity of the nation meant that the parliamentary reform was a compromising and a re-organising correction, in which “the middle class” (medelklass) and “the people” (folket) were interchangeable and set against the masses. The entirety of the nation was completed, according to Kjellén, in 1909 when the Second Chamber was chosen by the universal male (sic) suffrage. (Kjellén 1915, 13-15, 167, 183). 5 Although there has been some interest in the Swedish nationalism during the 1990s, the issue of political representation and the concept of nation has not been the focus of the Swedish studies on nationalism. True, Torkel Jansson has used the subtitle Från ståndsrepresentation till nationalförsamling (From representation by Estates to National Assembly) in his article on the formation of the Nordic nation-states (Jansson 1997, 74). Moreover, another article by Jansson states that there was a link between, on the one hand, the national liberal struggle against the dividing estate system and for the “national” “representation”, which was based on individuals, and, on the other hand, the formation of Swedish national uniformity (Jansson 1990, 349). If the issue has otherwise been noticed, then it has touched upon the controversies between “left” and “right” during the struggle over universal suffrage at the end of the nineteenth century and at the beginning of the twentieth century (Jansson 1990,


In Sweden the term British was hardly used. Instead, the reference was usually made to “England” and “English” (see Verney 1957, 46). 5 Kjellén’s own idea of a nation was not contractual or voluntaristic, but instead, according to him, a nation was an organic unity even in a biological sense. The national identity was a unified identity of the nation-state in which individuals were tools of the nation. Universal male suffrage (via corporations) was acceptable and social reforms were needed in order to bring about an organic coherence in the folkhem. (see Hall 1998, 217-224).

18 351). However, there are no special studies on nationalism and political representation of this period, either. 6 Sweden is usually not regarded as one of those countries which created the “century of nationalism” in the nineteenth century, and in the modern folkhem, “nationalism” was has been regarded as a strongly pejorative concept (Linnell & Löfgren 1995, 17-18). When nationalism has been analysed, it has very often been the national romantic current during the first two or three decades of the nineteenth century, and/or the state conservative patriotism at the end of the same century, that has been the focus. The main problem with Swedish literature on nationalism, from my perspective, has been the lack of interest in national rhetoric in the middle of the nineteenth century. For example, The Cultural Construction of Norden (1997) maintains that the lack of domestic conflicts made the nationalists’ efforts in Sweden more like a spectator’s role in watching a play enacted abroad (Nilsson 1997, 215; cf. Witoszek 1997, 72-90). I want to argue that arguments of foreign national conflicts, especially in Poland and in Italy, were eagerly introduced in Sweden in order to participate in domestic political struggles. The national liberal campaign for the parliamentary reform in the 1860s is a sign of that. The national liberals in Sweden were a relatively small but, in the context of reform agitation, loud group consisting primarily of publicists. They took up ‘modern’ topics in Swedish political life. One such topic was the demand for political representation in combination with the idea of “nation” which was based on individuals. Accordingly, the issue of political representation in Sweden can be viewed in terms of a new nation. The idea of creating a representative body based on a national gathering of individuals instead of the representation based on corporate privileges had already been discussed in 1809. The 1809 Instrument of Government and the Riksdag Act of 1810 were not, beyond any doubt, 6

There is a more or less common character in later interpretations on Swedish nationalism. It is the view, known from the works of, for instance, Ernest Gellner and Benedict Anderson, that nationalism is something which is constructed and not natural. For example, an anthology of Swedish national texts, Svenska krusbär, is provided with an argument that “the national” is a construction, which is used in various and often opposing purposes (Linnell & Löfgren 1995, 13; see also Petterson 1992, 139). Patrik Hall’s discourse analysis on nationalism in Sweden, The Social Construction of Nationalism – Sweden as an Example (1998), holds the same view. According to Hall, “there is nothing ’natural’ whatsoever in nationalism. As all other social phenomena, nationalism is constructed in social relations. The discourse of naturalism belongs to this social construction of nationalism by lending it arguments of ’naturalness’” (Hall 1998, 37). Moreover, the rise of nationalism and the changes in nationalism often follow the rise and fall of Habermasian bürgerliche Öffentlichkeit, i.e. the transformation of the public spheres from representative public to bürgerliche Öffentlickeit and thereafter to the Vergesellschaftung of the state. Hall’s study deals with three case studies, which fit well into the tripartition. (Hall 1998, 135). My point is not to argue for or against the constructed character of nationalism nor even to write about nationalism as a phenomenon, although my reading often comes close to those who pay attention to the constructivistic aspect of nationalism. It should be noted that when I speak about “nationalism” I use the word as the commentators have used it. In other words, I do not claim that the rhetoric of “nation”, “national”, and “nationality” necessarily means nationalism. I am interested in the rhetoric of “nation” as well as in the rhetoric of “patriotic” vocabulary.

19 “Swedish history translated into legal paragraphs”, as has been maintained (Lagerroth 1942, III), but what was then created was certainly not “the young nation” as the radicals had hoped (Petterson 1993, 34). Consequently, radical proposals presented in the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution in 1810 fell silent in 1815 (e.g. Hildebrand 1896, 629; Edén 1935, 229). Of course, Sweden was not on a threshold of a revolutionary republic in the 1860s, nor was the Bill aimed at creating a unicameral, i.e. undivided, representation. Nevertheless, my point is to show that the rhetoric of the national liberals in Sweden enjoyed the idea of a national representation which is undivided in principle and based on individuals. According to Politisk Tidskrift, the Swedish nation had become weaker because of the Estate privileges (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1862, 103-104). It was argued that a just representation would lead to the reunion of the nation (Politisk Tidskrift 1864, 576). The European political climate became reactionary after the revolutionary years of 1848 and 1849. Political radicalism took more cautious paths, and moderate liberals often found their collaborators among conservatives during the 1850s. At the same time, conservatives became more willing to support reforms. In the 1860s, Napoleon III’s strategy to use liberal reforms in order to calm down the criticism and further his imperialistic goals, together with Bismarck’s politics in Prussia, made it possible for many conservatives to view democratic reforms as possible and not too risky. At the same time, Disraeli broke the Whig monopoly on reforms in England, although the outcome of the reform was more radical than intended. As a matter of fact, the 1860s was the period of utilitarian law reforms in many European countries. The importance of Parliaments in comparison to governments tended to increase. (Andrén 1937, 67). These tendencies are to be found in Sweden, too. After the reactionary peak in the early 1850s, conservatives and liberals often met in the middle. As in many other countries, some bourgeois entrepreneurs were leading reformers. In fact, the late 1850s and early 1860s was a period of economic and social reforms in Sweden. (Andrén 1937, 72-73; Nilsson 1969a, 257-259, 269-270; Carlsson 1987, 186-187; Norberg 1998, 145-157). 7 commercial treaty with France placing low customs duties on French textiles and wines, as well as on Swedish wood products. Much of the domestic economic life was liberalised, too. The government had abolished the requirement that all craftsmen must belong to a guild in 1846, but some restrictions still remained. In 1864, the thirty-kilometer limit from a town of retail trade in the countryside and the remaining requirements concerning master craftsmen were abolished by the government after having been supported by all the four Estates at the Riksdag of 1862-63. Equal rights of inheritance between men and women were allowed in 1845. In 1857, the government proposed that unmarried women over twenty-five years of age should be given full responsibility for their own legal affairs, and the proposal was approved by all the four Estates. The system of justice was made more humane under Oscar's and Karl's reign. Especially Oscar I had been initiatory in this field of social problems. For example, the abolition of whipping and the 7 The principle of free trade had been discussed at the Riksdag of 1853-54, and it was adopted at the Riksdag of 1856-58. The new policy was promoted first of all by the Finance Minister J. A. Gripenstedt, who in his speeches praised the new Swedish economic wealth which would follow free trade, and the network of trunk railroads. Gripenstedt, although often considered a laissezfaire liberal, was an eager protagonist of a state-owned network of trunk railways. Many

20 Yet, political radicalism had not been forgotten in Europe. In the 1860s, the ideas of 1848 were well remembered both among radicals and among those who feared revolutions and uprisings. Processes of unification in Italy and in Germany, the conflicts between Poland and Russia, as well as between Prussia and Denmark, Civil War in the United States, the oppression of the opposition in France, the emancipation of serfs in Russia; all these raised worries about disturbances as well as hopes for a better future. The concept of “liberalism” as well as “liberal” was commonly used yet contested in Sweden in the middle of the nineteenth century. Nevertheless, Swedish “liberalism” in the nineteenth century has been regarded in general as a “leftist” concept. (Liedman 1995, 35-37, 45). The French word “libéral” was translated in Swedish as “generous” (frikostig) and “libéralité” as “equality” (jämlighet) in 1808. A year later, the Swedish word “liberal” was used in order to denote the political group that was behind the new constitution. To be “liberal” meant first of all that one was willing to give up the privileges of the Estate. The concept was linked with the ideas of equality before the law, and the separation of powers in a constitutional manner reminiscent of Montesquieu. “Liberal” and “constitutional” were accordingly often used as synonyms. (Thomson 1926, 153-154, 169-174, 185-186). The French influence was the most important, although it was the fraction of Spanish constitutionalists who introduced the term “liberal” as a party label to European use during the first decade of the nineteenth century (Vierhaus 1982b, 751; Liedman 1995, 35). The Spanish origin can be seen in the Swedish name of the opposite to “liberal”, which was “servile” (servil) (Thomson 1926, 187-189; Hellqvist 1980, 571). “Liberal” became commonly used in the 1820s and 1830s. It meant the opposition to King Karl XIV Johan and, moreover, ideas which were imported from English and French political life by papers like Argus and Stockholms Courier (Andersson 1917, 58-63; Hellqvist 1980, 571). The first modern newspaper in Sweden, Aftonbladet, was founded in 1830 and became the flagship of “liberalism” in the country. The paper was against political and economic corporations, and according to the paper “the social question” was best answered by voluntary associations. During the 1830s and 1840s, the paper was a forum for different sorts of political radicalism. Ideas of Bentham, Saint-Simon and other utopian socialists, as well as republican ideals were expressed on the columns of Aftonbladet (e.g. Christensen 1997, 26-31). As will be shown in this study, “the principle of persons” (personlighetsprincipen) was one of the foremost slogans “the liberals” used in their rhetoric. Together with “the principle of associations” (associationsprincipen) it was set against the privileges which were understood in conservatives and liberals opposed this policy. The Peasants opposed the state-owned railways, as well as free trade. Actually, the Riksdag passed protectionistic legislation in 1860, 1863, and 1866 in order to aid Swedish agriculture, but the government refused to put the decision into effect. Consequently, many reforms of economic liberalism were achieved by the government and supported by the Burghers in the first place. In 1865, the government concluded a so-called church duty, as well as the abolition of the physical punishment of servants were all reforms which were codified in the Criminal Code of 1864. (Carlsson 1987, 186-188).

21 terms of the Estates, the guilds, the state, and the bureaucracy. In the middle of the nineteenth century, “liberals” were both protagonists of the right to create free associations, and opponents of the economic restrictions that the state had in economic life (Nilsson 1988, 17). The new political language that emerged during the first half of the nineteenth century was linked with new political and social practices which emerged at the same time. The new political activity, of which the new voluntary associations, public meetings and banquets as well as “liberal” newspapers were examples, was to a great extent happening outside or regardless of the sphere of the state. A new sphere of political life was formed and “public opinion” was viewed as the forum, the result, as well as the primary subject of the new public life. (cf. Kurt Johannesson et al. 1987; Jansson 1985). Liberal ideas were often expressed with a more or less clearly articulated confidence of a harmonising effects of liberal politics. This does not mean, however, that a pure laissez-faire politics would have been so common as it sometimes seems to be understood. For example, as Stefan Collini has shown, mid-Victorian liberal ideals in Britain were not atomistic and utilitarian, but instead considerably altruistic (Collini 1991, 58-64, 73, 175-176). It should be noted that the commonly held division between economic liberalism and political liberalism – or Manchester liberalism and social liberalism – is often somewhat difficult to maintain. Certainly, there was a tension within “the liberals” over this matter. It was perhaps possible to be somewhat “liberal” in economic questions without raising any particular demands for political reforms. However, the tradition of the Enlightenment and human rights was often linked with ideas which emphasised free enterprise and individual liberties, at the cost of the social wellbeing and political rights of every people. The masses were not included in the polity in any case. It was much more common to be “a liberal” than “a democrat”. In Sweden, the concept of “democracy” was contested in the middle of the nineteenth century. Opponents of “democracy” often referred to the terror of the Jacobins, whereas those who wanted to be called “democrats” maintained that “the democracy” did not mean any oppression of the rich by the poor, but instead the power of the whole people executed in a peaceful manner (Hansson 1989, 42-43). In a European context, the revolutionary year of 1848 has been described as a sort of watershed, after which there were both “ultra liberals” and “old liberals”. The division marked also an increased distance between “liberals” and “socialists” and other “radicals”. (Vierhaus 1982b, 751-752, 776-778). Parallel to this, the difference between “liberals” and “conservatives” became less apparent. It was possible to be “a liberal conservative” or “a conservative liberal” (Vierhaus 1982a, 554-556). The concept of “conservatism” was a neologism, which appeared as a counter concept to “liberalism”, “democracy”, and “radicalism” at the beginning of the nineteenth century. In France, the concept became common during the age of Restoration, in England and in German language, during the 1830s. However, the concept was not so willingly used by those who were labelled as “conservatives” during the early nineteenth century. (Vierhaus 1982a, 531-541, 562-564). In Sweden, too, the self-

22 identification with “conservatism” was a rather late phenomenon. During the first half of the century, it was more common to claim that one was “a true liberal” instead of “a conservative” (Heckscher 1939, 88-89). Characteristic to “conservatism” was an organic view on society and state, as well as traditionalism and anti-individualism (Elvander 1961a, 5-14; Tingsten 1939, 1119, 94; Abrahamsson 1990b, 267-269). The concept of “bourgeoisie” in the meaning of German “Bürgertum” as an indication of a social collective was hardly used in mid-nineteenth-century Sweden. There were “burghers”, but a more suitable expression for a collective identification was the concept of a “middle class” (medelklass) due to the relatively small amount of urban population in the country. The term “bourgeois” (borgerlig), in turn, was commonly used. It could imply virtuous adjectives like frugal, unaffected, honourable, independent, and benevolent. In nineteenth-century political language, it was most often connected to the concept of “citizenship” in a civic context (medborgerlig). During the end of the century, it also gained a pejorative meaning when it could denote philistine persons and triviality. (Stråth 1988, 35-36). The emergence of a Marxist labour movement clearly was involved in the increasing pejorative use of the term. “Bourgeois” was viewed as non-proletarian (Koselleck 1972, XX). “The middle class”, often used in the plural form, was associated with the enlightened and educated part of society. It was considered a mediator between the upper and lower strata of the people. On the one hand, it could be used by all who wanted to show their position as educated and reasonable mediators between the people and the state. (Petterson 1992, 18-20). For example, in the German states the aristocracy saw itself as a mediator between the people and the throne, i.e., between revolution and absolutism. This position was defended in terms of the estates and especially in terms of the middle estate. (Reif 1990, 140-144; Stråth 1990, 17). On the other hand, “the middle class” was used in order to make an identification with “the people” (folket). “The middle class” was supposed to represent and lead those members of the populace who did not have a say in political matters. The concept – however heterogeneous the content of it might have been – was ‘open’ upwards rather than ‘downwards’. (Petterson 1992, 2122). As related to the absence of Bürgertum, and the relatively weak aristocratic character of “the middle class”, it was characteristic of the Swedish concept of “the middle class” in the nineteenth century that the peasants were not automatically excluded from it. Access to the middle position was possible not least due to the fact that the peasants had formed a political Estate of their own which had existed for centuries. However, the peasants were mostly associated with “the people” and not with “the middle class”. While “the liberals” saw themselves as an enlightened “middle class” whose interests were the same as those of the whole society, the peasants claimed to represent “nine tenths of the nation” (Christensen 1997, 5). From the 1840s on, the peasants and the intellectual “liberals” had a common goal in a thorough reform of political representation. The concept of “peasant” (bonde) referred to the political Estate and was quite egalitarian in character within those who made a living from

23 agriculture and were freeholders of land, whereas the term “farm-owner” (hemmansägare) marked more clearly the social importance of ownership. The term “landman” (lantman), which was commonly used during the nineteenth century, could mean both peasants and other land-owning people like nobles. Thus, the name Lantmannapartiet for a new agricultural party in 1867 suited well due to its ‘openness’ towards upper strata of people. (Kyle 1990, 346). In this study, there is much talk about “radical liberalism”. Yet, for an analyst, the terms “radical” and “radicalism” are somewhat problematic. Firstly, there was, and has always been, extreme political opinions which were conservative and radical at the same time. Radical conservative opinions have not, however, commonly been labelled as “radicalism”, and I am following this conventional practice in my description. In fact, the contemporaries positioned “radicals” together with “revolutionaries”, “liberals”, “democrats”, “socialists”, etc. Secondly, the differences within the category of “radicalism” can be considerable. Liberal intellectuals who usually led the workers’ associations, which emerged from the late 1840s onwards in Sweden, often presented radical political demands and, at the same time, made sure that the political leadership remained in their hands instead of the workers’. Thirdly, “radicalism” is not a derivative of social background. In other words, it is misleading to maintain that social condition directly influences one’s political thinking and activity. There certainly is a greater potential for radical politics if one is unfairly treated and left without political rights, but, as for example, the case of free trade and protectionism has shown, well-off landowners and day-workers have sometimes shared the same political interests. Tactical manoeuvres can make the distinction of “radicalism” difficult, as well. For example, some “radical” papers were actually financed by the King and his Court at the beginning of the 1850s in Stockholm (Abrahamsson 1990a, 245-251). In the German language, words like Revolutionäre, Republikaner, Bewegungspartei, Entschiedene, and Demokraten often were interchangeable and synonymous with political radicalism before 1848 (Wende 1984, 125). The concept of democracy was divided between liberal democratic and marxistsocialist uses first during the decades between 1850 and 1890 (Rosenberg 1962, 10-13). There were differences already before 1848, of course, but the European ‘democratic front’ had in practice, and in many ways, common goals. After the disappointment of 1848-49, when democratic liberalism had shown its loyalty to the existing order, there began to emerge clear breakaways from the common camp (Vierhaus 1982b, 776). In the 1860s, the differentiating tendencies of political radicalism became visible. Lassalle in Germany, the British labour movement, and anarchists were examples of that. From the 1880s on, European political radicalism was divided into different national variants, on the one hand, and into the class-conscious labour movement, on the other hand. (Rosenberg 1962, 123-124, 132-134). Consequently, the concept of “class” ought to be taken as an important object of a historical study rather than as an unquestioned and solid fact on which the study should be based. Class identities may have been real for historical actors, because the classes were felt as real categories, not because

24 they existed without their articulation. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to analyse who has used the language of “class”, by which means, and in which situations (Paetau 1990, 435-436). In the middle of the nineteenth century, the concept of “worker” (arbetare) was commonly used in a respectful manner, and in order to make a distinction from other people who had to support themselves by physical labour (Jansson 1985, 199). True, the secret group of journeymen “communists”, as they called themselves, in Stockholm in the late 1840s used the expression “the working class” (den arbetande klassen) in their propaganda without any elitist connotations (Ragnerstam 1986, 121). However, it was usually used in concrete situations and often in the plural form. It gained a more common abstract usage only in the 1860s. (Karlbom 1967, 234-235). It can be noted that this change towards more abstract language of “class” was related to institutional and social changes. The legal conditions of the labouring workers changed after 1846, when the guilds were abolished and finally in 1864, when the remaining restrictions concerning trade and master craftsmen were removed. There was thus considerably greater numbers of freely moving day-workers who could promote an identity of a specific “working class”. Despite the emergence of the language of “the working class”, workers’ associations were still led by educated liberals rather than workers themselves. The associations were concerned more with questions of self-help and cooperatives than the political rights of the workers (e.g. G. K. Hamilton 1865). There are some demarcations concerning my choice of primary sources that need to be clarified. I have focused on the public debate on the reform issue. My purpose has been to study the well-documented debate from a new perspective, rather than to base my contribution on new findings in terms of new sources. This means, first of all, that the sources I have used are public instead of private, i.e. letters and unpublished memoirs. The primary focus has been on the speeches that were held at the Riksdag as well as on the pamphlet literature that was published during the reform campaigns. Regarding the supporters of the Bill, the most important source has been the journal Politisk Tidskrift, which was founded in order to promote the reform. Its articles adequately represent the views of the national liberals. Newspapers were important agents in the debate. Many of the pamphlets and speeches were quoted in the papers. This means that there is an overlap between the sources. Consequently, I have used the newspapers as complementary sources in a selective manner. Two main papers should be mentioned here: Aftonbladet and Fäderneslandet. The first was the largest paper in the country, and as a “liberal” publication it supported the Bill. The second was close to the views of the national liberals and it was more radical than the first. 8


The newspaper Wäktaren was the main forum of the conservatives’ arguments. That the paper is not referred to in my study is based only on the fact that the most important texts were also published in the form of pamphlets which are included in my sources.

25 Moreover, my study deals much more with Stockholm than, for example Gothenburg or Malmö, even if “Sweden” is used in the text. Due to the importance of the speeches at the Riksdag and the pamphlets that were spread throughout the country, the demarcation should not be too restrictive. Another demarcation I have made concerns radical papers which were against the Bill. I have found, for example, the paper Söndagsbladet highly interesting, but otherwise the radical opponents of the Bill are missing in this study, as I have focused on political actors who at least potentially had a possibility to decide upon the fate of the Bill. This means that the ‘relevant’ debate involved the supporters of the Bill and their conservative opponents. The radical opponents of the Bill who were on the ‘left’ side of the political field did not have any say in this matter and therefore they were more or less ignored in the debate on which I have focused. This does not mean that “the masses” or “the workers” would not have played a role in the rhetoric of the supporters and opponents of the Bill. On the contrary, the debate was considerably focused on how to speak in the name of “the people” so that the impression of inclusiveness would be strong. Furthermore, I have not analysed texts which were written by the King. Karl XV played an important role during the debate, but more as an tactical player behind the scenes than in public. He was much more a rhetorical figure used in the debate than a generator of arguments. This study consists of three parts and eleven chapters. Part One is an introduction and background to the empirical study. The introduction is followed by chapter two which provides a general overview of the formation of the reform Bill, and presents the main actors of the debate. Chapter three discusses common interpretations of the reform. Chapter four discusses my perspective on conceptual history and its application in this study. Part Two begins with theoretical and historical cases that involved the issue of political representation and the usage of the concept of “nation” in an international historical context. The National Assembly of the French Revolution and the reception of the revolutionary combination of “representation” and “nation” during the nineteenth century are the main topics of this chapter. (chapter 5). Chapter six focuses upon the temporal aspects of the issues discussed in chapter five. Part Three consists of the empirical analyses of the concept of “national representation” in Sweden. Chapter seven discusses the history of political representation in Sweden. It also presents my analysis of the chief architect of the idea of “national representation” in Sweden during the early nineteenth century, Erik Gustaf Geijer. Chapter eight examines how the principles of representation were understood and presented in the 1860s. In chapter nine, the rhetoric of “nation”, “fatherland”, and “patriotic citizen” are scrutinised. Chapter ten focuses on the temporal aspects of the rhetoric. The study closes with a conclusion in chapter eleven.



2.1 Actors, factions, strategies The question of reforming political representation arose again after a rather silent period during the 1850s. On October 24, 1860, both of the popular Estates, the Burghers and the Peasants, requested the government to present a bill for representation based on elections that would not be restricted by Estate or class. This chapter gives a general overview of the formation of the bill of political representation and the subsequent reform in the early 1860s. It presents an overview of the debates from the introduction of the royal 1 proposition to its final acceptance at the House of Nobility on December 1865. In the Burgher Estate, the initiative came from August Blanche, a wellknown author and journalist, as well as a radical politician (Eric Johannesson 1987, 80-172). In the Peasant Estate, the initiative came from A. W. Uhr, who had participated in the radical meetings in Örebro in 1849 and 1850 (Andrén 1937, 23). The idea of a unicameral body of representation with universal male suffrage was proposed during these meetings. Both men were influenced by the European radical enthusiasm of 1848. The Burghers referred to the constitution of 1809 and especially to the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution of 1810 in their attempt to abolish political Estates (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1861, 62). The memorandum was also the point of departure in the petition put forth by the Peasants (Bonde-Ståndets Protokoller 8 1859-60, 523526). The main point in both petitions was the abolition of political Estates. The Burghers requested a reform that was in accordance with the constitutional 1

The actors, debates, and even private correspondences has been carefully documented in earlier studies, especially in Stig Ekman's Slutstriden om representationsreformen (1966), and therefore it is not my intention to redo his study, but present an overview.


development in Europe, whereas the Peasants went further in their claim. They wanted to have a body of political representation which was, in principle, unicameral. This would mean that the upper chamber would be chosen out of the lower chamber by its own members, like in Norway (Andrén 1937, 23; Ekman 1966, 15-17). The final debate on parliamentary reform had begun. A Central Committee was founded in order to organise a national campaign in support of 2 the bill. During the next year, in 1861, about 40 000 signed the petition lists and some 70 meetings were arranged, often together with “the rifle club movement” (skarpskytterörelse), a voluntary military movement, led by the foremost “national liberals” (Ekman 1966, 15-25; Petterson 1997; Eric Johannesson 1982, 86-87). It has been argued that the liberals were not properly ready for the reform campaign, for the only claim they were able to make was the abolition of the Estates and the introduction of joint elections (Nilsson 1969a, 248). However, in order to get the bill passed it was important to have support for the reform. For example, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Ludvig Manderström, a moderate conservative, argued in his letter to Prince Oscar for a conservative coalition, instead of a moderate liberal one, as a precondition to the liberal reform (Nilsson 1969a, 252). The pro-reform movement organised lively press campaigns, which were often linked with demands for a Scandinavian union between Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. Originally a student movement, after the Crimean War (1853— 1856) Scandinavianism was closely associated with the Swedish Kings Oskar I and Karl XV who planned to govern the three countries under the Swedish Crown. Aside from the Kings and their closest collaborators, there were many “national liberals” who combined the issues of unification with political reforms— especially the proposed reform of the system of political representation in Sweden. Aftonbladet, which was the largest newspaper in 3 Sweden, campaigned for liberal economic and political reforms. Its editor-inchief, August Sohlman, was one of the leading Scandinavianists in the country. Nya Dagligt Allehanda, lead by editor-in-chief K. A. Lindström, was in turn both 4 anti-Scandinavian and protectionist . 2

The members of the Central Committee were Hugo Hamilton, Per Reinhold Tersmeden, Gustaf Cederschiöld, L.J. Lovén, A.W. Björck, August Blanche, Lars Johan Hierta, Anders Gudmundsson, Jan Persson and J.O. Almqvist (Ekman 1966, 15). 3 The radical paper Fäderneslandet had a greater number of subscribers, but Aftonbladet was published five times a week, whereas Fäderneslandet only twice. 4 The conflicting views towards Scandinavianism between the papers became apparent during “the viceroy conflict”, which involved the Union with Norway (18591860), when Karl XV was forced to recant his promise to abolish the office of the viceroy (Governor) in the Norwegian government. Nya Dagligt Allehanda had supported the majority of the Riksdag and the Council of State. Aftonbladet, together with the minority of the Riksdag, took a friendly position in their relationship to Norway (Ekman 1966, 18-19; Kaartvedt 1989, 53-54). Oscar’s effort to pursue an active foreign policy during the Crimean War created better contacts between the liberal circles and the King, a background against which we should consider the relationship between the royal and liberal Scandinavianists. This was seen in the viceroy conflict, when the liberal Scandinavianists and Karl XV were on the side of Norwegians, and the liberals were divided in this matter (Tjerneld 1983, 20).


The Minister of Justice (justitiestatsminister), Louis De Geer, took initiative 5 and wrote the proposal for the reform. On July 16, 1861, De Geer presented a memorandum to the King which laid down the principles of a bicameral system of representation based on a general electorate. In his memorandum, he stated that “it seems time to bring about a reform in Sweden where the injustice of leaving the right to levy taxes with four Estates, two of which are privileged, may in turbulent times lead to the gravest consequences” (quoted in Verney 1957, 46). Moreover, “a more rational system of representation has been adopted by the rest of Europe, with the exception of England” (ibid.). De Geer wanted to show that an upper chamber based on Nobility was not possible. He pointed out the weakness of the Estate system and the “impossibility of having strong government” and used the term “government” (regering) in a manner which included his colleagues as well as the King. Moreover, he threatened to resign if the reform was not carried out. (Verney 1957, 47; Andrén 1937, 24; Carlsson 1987, 191). Karl XV was against parliamentary reform as proposed by De Geer and considered replacing De Geer with some of his personal advisers. His plan was to steer the Council towards a pro-Scandinavian course. The goal was a united Scandinavia, lead by him. However, it has been argued that his attitude towards the proposed reform changed in the late summer of 1861, following his meeting with Napoleon III. The French Emperor advised the Swedish King to combine his Scandinavian plans with parliamentary reform. According to 6 Aftonbladet's August Sohlman, Karl XV wanted to be a Nordic Victor Emanuel. It was thought that a new form of political representation might help to catalyse the creation of a new Scandinavian union (Ekman 1966, 56; Andrén 1937, 26). Moreover, the King revealed to an English diplomat that the rivalry between Sweden and Norway was too strong, and that it was necessary to neutralise it with a third element—with a parliament à trois. He even stated that if the Riksdag would accept a Scandinavian union, then he would be willing to accept a new Parliament Act regardless of its contents (Ekman 1966, 256-259). The Scandinavianist liberals used the figure of a reformist King in their rhetoric. In turn, the King in his Scandinavianistic game, played both sides of the field. De Geer did not support Scandinavianistic plans. It was not until the autumn of 1862 that Karl XV and De Geer agreed on a government bill. However, the King remained half-hearted and did not publicly support the reform. He had his own Scandinavianistic plans and conservative doubts, and 7 there were several ministerial crises during the first half of the 1860s. In 5

De Geer entered the Council in 1858 as a young, politically inexperienced aristocrat and bureaucrat. He strengthened his position in the Government after the viceroy conflict of 1860 and he soon became the leading Minister replacing Count Henning Hamilton who was forced to resign as a result of the viceroy conflict. 6 Victor Emanuel was the King of Sardinia-Piedmont from 1849 and the King of Italy from March 1861. Together with the Prime Minister of Piedmont, Count Cavour, and Giuseppe Garibaldi, he was the leading person behind the Italian Risorgimento. 7 In the spring of 1864, Karl XV tried to lead the government towards a Scandinavianistic direction and to participate in the Danish-Prussian war by trying to replace De Geer with viceroy Gillis Bildt and governor Gustaf Lagerbjelke. Both men were


addition, the King stated in a letter that “the leftist phalanx of the Burger Estate” must stand on the side of the government before he would be willing to risk his position in front of the Noble opposition (Ekman 1966, 56-65; Verney 1957, 47-50). The statement by the King implied the existence of different political factions, at least within the Burghers. The concept of “party” (parti) was normally used in a pejorative sense. In particular, the party life of “the Age of Liberty” was not viewed positively during the nineteenth century, not even among the liberals. “The Age of Liberty” (1719 and 1772) was a period during which, in practice, the Estates had sovereign power over the Crown in political life. It has been characterised as an era of early parliamentarism, as well as, an era of party struggles and an inner division of the country. It was commonly held that the “Hats” (hattar) and “Caps” (mössor) had caused division in the country and weakened its international position. Since 1809, “party” was used together with “coterie” signifying temporary groupings (Carlsson 1987, 177). The House of Nobility was often the forum of “party” factions between the “liberals” and “conservatives” in the 1840s. As will be discussed in the next chapter of this study, modern political parties emerged only after the 1866 reform in Sweden. It should be noted that, from my point of view, it is not of primary interest whether there were “real” parties or not in the early 1860s. What is interesting, instead, is the rhetoric of “party” and of other terms signifying political groupings. There was, however, a considerable degree of continuity of political group ties in the 1850s and 60s. This was particularly the case within the Burghers 8 with its “Björcks” and “Muréns”. This division originated from the issue of whether or not to construct a railroad network, but it was commonly regarded as a question of who was friendly with the government and who was not. Between these two groups, there was a smaller “floating” group (Carlsson 1987, 177; Tjerneld 1983, 113-136; Tjerneld 1977, 90; Nilsson 1989, 274). Before De Geer’s initiative to reform the system of representation, “the Björcks” were often in opposition to the government. They were more principled than “the

known as conservatives, and it was quite a surprise when Bildt, following the King's lead, ended up with supporters for the Bill before the final vote (Ekman 1966, 227-228, 258). Already in November 1862, there were rumours that the King wanted to build a new government with a coalition of Scandinavianistic nobles and Scandinavianistic burghers, led by Erik Sparre and A. W. Björck respectively (Nilsson 1969a, 247). 8 The names come from the leading member of the respective group. Per Murén was a wholesaler from Gävle, A. W. Björck a magistrate from Gothenburg. In 1859, Björck blamed S. A. Hedlund, the editor of Handelstidningen in Gothenburg, for being willing to oppose the government only in material matters, but not in constitutional matters. Hedlund was able to retaliate in 1863 in a private letter when he accused Björck of being too hard with his “party discipline”. The leader of the “liberals” seemed to be illiberal, whereas “the Muréns” had more individual liberties to cast different votes. In fact, Björck and his supporters were accused of delimiting the deliberative rights of the member of the Riksdag before the electoral vote in 1865. Together with A. W. Björck, “the Björcks” were such leading figures as L. J. Hierta, August Blanche, and C. F. Waern (Tjerneld 1983, 21-23, 34-35, 134; Tjerneld 1977, 90).

31 9

Muréns”, who took care of practical economic goals (Tjerneld 1977, 81-82). At the opening of the Riksdag in October 1862, “the Björcks” had a majority in the Estate with 40 members countered against 27 “Muréns” (Tjerneld 1977, 67-68; Nilsson 1969a, 244). During the debate on parliamentary reform, the conservatives were pleased with the internal divisions within the Burgher Estate, despite the fact that both factions supported the reform Bill (Ekman 1966, 204; Tjerneld 1977, 90-91). Between 1847 and 1866, the Nobility was often divided between the “left”, 10 “moderates”, and “junkers”. (Carlsson 1987, 177; Tjerneld 1983, 141-147; Ekman 1966, 87, 331, 364-368). During the autumn of 1865, there were two groups within the Nobles. Those who supported De Geer’s Bill held their meetings at the Hôtel de Suède, whereas the opponents of the Bill held theirs at the Hotell Phoenix. At first, those who supported the reform outnumbered those opposed. (Andrén 1937, 164-165). The Clergy dominated the conservatives, and the opposition within the Estate came largely from rural clergymen. The Peasants were usually in opposition to the government. Between 1850 and 1854 there was a strong conservative “coterie” within the Estate, and in 1862-1863, there was a division between the liberal “Östergötland party” and the moderate, protectionist group, the “Rosenberg's party” in the Riksdag. The latter group held a majority in the Riksdag between 1865-1866, and many of its members joined the Agrarian Party (Lantmannapartiet) in 1867 (Carlsson 1987, 177-178). De Geer’s Bill did not divide the Peasants. It was generally expected that, if the Bill was passed, then the peasants and middle classes would control the lower chamber. However, it was unclear who would control the upper chamber. Karl’s father, Oskar I, had wanted to appoint some of the members, while conservatives supported the notion of an ex officio representation made up of nobles and bishops. In short, De Geer made three compromises in his proposal: first, the uneducated masses were to be excluded from the Second Chamber; second, the First Chamber would be restricted to the upper classes and yet meet liberal demands; third, there would be a demarcation of the respective authority of the chambers. The creation of Provincial Councils in 1862 had made it possible for De Geer to look for a new type of solution. Provincial Councils were elected by indirect elections according to the fyrktal, a scale of weighted votes based on income and wealth, a vote which also included women (Verney 1957, 49; Andrén 1937, 27-28, 31, 156157; Carlsson 1987, 191).


The division between “the Björcks” and “the Muréns” was to a great extent also a division between the Scandinavianists and those who were against the Scandinavian union. However, among “the Muréns” there was, Gustaf Lallerstedt, a Scandinavianist who had written the article La Scandinavie, ses craintes et ses espérances, which was published in Paris in 1856. The purpose of the article had been to introduce the idea of a Scandinavian union while the Crimean War was still a reality. Lallersted had close contacts with the Royal Family, and he can be considered one of the leading protagonists of dynastic Scandinavianism (Tjerneld 1977, 96-97; Furlani 1977, 396-397). 10 The “junkers” were a conservative faction led by aristocratic landowners who were, in some economic matters, pro-reform.


During the preparation of the bill, according to the King’s correspondence with De Geer, the King was in favour of a more conservative policy. He proposed that the Second Chamber be based on a graded scale of votes. In Addition, he preferred a longer term for the Second Chamber than the initially proposed three-year period. In the case of the First Chamber, the King opposed the use of Provincial Councils as electoral colleges. He wanted it to be based on ex officio membership for certain nobles and bishops, and on royal nominations. De Geer argued that the upper chamber was designed to represent the people and not to be a coterie of royal advisers. Moreover, the King opposed of the tendency to increase the authority of the legislature, at the expense of the royal executive power. The possibility that the annual parliamentary sessions would result in a system of parliamentary government worried the King (Andrén 1937, 32-35; Verney 1957, 58-59; Ekman 1966, 62). After having consulted with the King, De Geer was ready to make some changes. De Geer thought that the members of the first chamber ought to be paid, but the King argued that if the members were unpaid, it would be an additional guarantee of conservatism. De Geer conceded to the King on the matter of salaries and even gave up the idea of the chambers selecting their own Speakers. The most interesting proposal made by De Geer, a proposal which was rejected by the King, was the exclusion of civil servants from being Members of Parliament. The proposal, if it had been put into effect, would have considerably changed the composition of the Parliament (Verney 1957, 60). De Geer presented his proposal to the Council of State on January 5, 1863. According to the proposal, which latter became the Riksdag Act, the election to the First Chamber would be indirect. Provincial Councils (Landsting) and large towns which did not form part of the Provinces would elect one member for every 30 000 inhabitants. As mentioned earlier, the Provincial Councils were elected according to a graded scale of weighted votes. The graded vote included companies, together with individual taxpayers in municipalities. Members of the first chamber were elected for a term of nine years. To run as a candidate, one needed to be a man over thirty-five years of age who, for at least three years previous to the election, had either owned real estate with a taxable value of at least 80 000 riksdaler or had earned an annual taxable income of at least 4000 riksdaler. A member lost his seat if at any time he was no longer eligible for membership to the chamber. Members did not receive any remuneration for their services or travelling expenses. Members of the Second Chamber were elected for a term of three years. Judicial districts (domsagor) formed county constituencies; one representative could be elected for every 40 000 inhabitants. Towns could form their own constituencies, but were divided into two types. Those which had a population of 10 000 or more could elect a member for every 10 000 inhabitants, while those with less than 10 000 could join together in groups and form separate constituencies and elect a member for every 6000 inhabitants. The electorate for the Second Chamber was to consist of men entitled to vote in local elections and who, in addition, either owned real estate with a taxable value of at least 1000 riksdaler, or for at least five years, had leased farm property with a taxable value of at least 6000 riksdaler , or had a


taxable income of at least 800 riksdaler a year. Elections were to take place every three years in September. In larger towns, elections were direct while in smaller towns and municipalities which were grouped into larger constituencies, elections were indirect. In contrast to Provincial Council elections, there was to be no plural voting. Those running for the Second Chamber were required to be at least twenty-five years of age and to have been entitled to vote in the local constituency for at least a year. Members were not allowed to resign unconditionally as was allowed in the First Chamber. Furthermore, they would receive a salary of 1200 riksdaler plus travelling expenses. All Members of Parliament were required to be Swedish citizens and Protestant. On January 14, 1863, the Bill was brought before the Riksdag. De Geer presented and defended the Bill in the House of Nobility which was an example of “modern” parliamentary politics, as observed by Nils Tersmeden, a leading conservative politician and a man clearly annoyed by De Geer’s activity (Svedelius 1889, 539). The Bill was referred to the Committee on the Constitution. According to the 1809 Instrument of Government, the Committee on the Constitution was not permitted to make changes to a royal proposal, only accept it or vote it down. The proposal was adopted and the Bill was referred to the next session of the Riksdag. However, eight of the 28 members of the Committee added formal reservations to the minutes. Two of them were Nobles, the remaining six were Clergymen. One of the main concerns of the Clergy was the role of the Provincial Councils in the elections of the First Chamber, which they feared would favour agrarian interests. Moreover, they regarded the qualifications for the Second Chamber franchise arbitrary. To avoid the problems and dangers of monetary qualifications, on the one hand, and the perils of democracy, on the other, they could only suggest a partial change to the representation structure – one to be based on class instead of Estates. There was also a fear that royal power would be weakened and that both chambers would be controlled by the peasantry (Andrén 1937, 146-152; Verney 1957, 62-63). The critics notwithstanding, the conservative faction of the House of Nobility could not present a united front against the Bill (Ekman 1966, 77-89). The royal Bill was welcomed with great enthusiasm in the liberal press. Banquets and festivals were held, toasts for the King were raised and Karl’s name-day turned into a celebration of the reform Bill. The Peasants and the Burghers sent an address to the King to show their gratitude towards the monarch and the government. The debate at the Riksdag on March 1863 implied that the popular Estates would vote in favour of the Bill in the next session to be held in 1865 (Ekman 1966, 77). Plans were made to organise a campaign for parliamentary reform in order to prepare for the next session of the Riksdag.


2.2 The campaigns for and against the reform During the autumn of 1864, the campaign against the Bill began. It was organised in Uppsala, the country’s leading university town. Thus, it is not a surprise that there were no participants from Uppsala in the pro-reform delegation that gathered in Stockholm a year later in November 1865; the majority of the Uppsala professors and associate professors were against the 11 Bill. Under the leadership of Nils Tersmeden, a leading protagonist against the reform and a member of the Committee on the Constitution Committee in six sessions of the Riksdag, an extensive campaign was organised against the reform Bill. Funds were collected, pamphlets published, and speeches were given throughout the country. About 10 000 brochures were sent from Uppsala to at least 130 persons. Eleven different brochures were published and used in the campaign. The opponents of the Bill had only two major newspapers on their side, Wäktaren in Stockholm and Snällposten in Malmö. Wäktaren was a conservative paper with some 4000 subscribers. The paper supported — like the conservative critics in general — a bicameral system of representation that was based on class. The campaign for the reform was criticised and its importance belittled. It was argued that De Geer’s Bill would open the way to party dominance. The critical attitude towards the reform was often combined with criticism of the government’s free trade policy. In addition to Wäkatren and Snällposten, the conservatives were allowed to insert propagandist articles in Nya Dagligt Allehanda from the beginning of June 1865 (Ekman 1966, 90-141). The campaign texts will be analysed in closer detail in Chapters 8, 9, and 10. For now, I shall only briefly describe the general lines of arguments which appeared in the pamphlets and articles. The Councillor of Justice, J. A. Södergren, wrote a pamphlet called Satser i representationsfrågan (Statements on the Issue of Representation), also published in Wäktaren, in which he argued for a bicameral system that was based on class voting and the demise of the selfattending status of the Nobility and the bishops. However, he does not present a concrete proposal for a new Parliament Act, but only refers to an earlier critique of the royal proposal of 1848. According to Södgren, the Riksdag should be divided into two chambers. Both chambers would then be elected from five corporations, of which the Nobility would form the first (Ekman 1966, 90-97). A leading philosopher, professor C. J. Boström, who had been engaged with religious issues, was asked to participate on the conservative campaign and “leave hell for a moment and write about De Geer instead” (Ekman 1966, 95). Boström answered with a pamphlet entitled Äro rikets ständer berättigade att för svenska folket besluta och fastsälla det nu hvilande representationsförslaget (Are the Estates of the Kingdom Entitled to Decide upon and Ratify the Now Resting 11

For example, there were loud protests among the conservatives when a professor of political science, H. L. Rydin, circulated a petition in support of the Bill where 39 people from the University signed their names (Ekman 1966, 237; Verney 1957, 70).


Proposition on Representation?) which was a rewritten version of his Aphorisms published in 1850, a criticism towards the 1848 proposal for reform. Boström argued that the state was like a family, the governing of which was a moral responsibility. The Estates had been given the responsibility, one which they could not abandon (Verney 1957, 66). J. J. Nordström, a Finnish born Royal Archivist, took part in the conservative campaign under the pseudonym “Thomas Frisk.” He was one of the leading specialists in constitutional matters. He defended the Estates building his ideas upon a notion of the organic character of the state, but was, in practice, in favour of class voting. Joint elections were possible for the Second Chamber, but definitely not for the First (Lindman 1981, 105). A former Minister, O. I. Fåhraeus, argued that De Geer’s Bill would lead to peasant dominance. He stated, moreover, that De Geer’s Bill would exclude most of the craftsmen and artisans from the vote. Nevertheless, the proposal was criticised because it could bring about democracy in the future. A former Under Secretary, C. W. Ringborg, wanted to adjust the four Estates to two chambers. The upper chamber would consist of members of the Nobility, Clergy, and Academia. The lower chamber would represent town and rural interests (Ekman 1966, 103, 113, 117). It is should be noted that most of the conservatives acknowledged the need of the reformation of the estate system. Some kind of bicameral solution was usually accepted, as long as it was based on the class principle. In a nutshell, the conservative campaign was negative in character. It was more important to secure a majority against the reform Bill than to launch an alternative proposal that might have possibilities to gain enough support. The notion of a class based vote was the opponents’ standard solution. A former Minister, Carl Otto Palmstierna, and the leading politician at the House of Nobility, Henning Hamilton, both admitted the need for some kind of reform. Both Hamilton and Palmstierna developed a sort of bicameral system with the existing Estates. An opponent of the Bill, who was totally against any kind of change to the system of representation, was Vicar J. B. Runsten, whose series of articles were entitled Om tidsandan och dess syftemål (On the Spirit of the Times and Its Purpose). Another polemical text was Nils Tersmeden’s Några ord till Sveriges Allmoge (A Few Words to the Swedish Peasantry), in which he anonymously claimed to be a member of the Peasant Estate. His point was to show that De Geer’s reform would bring about a dominance of capitalists, and that no peasants would end up sitting in the Riksdag (Ekman 1966, 115-117). The conservative campaign was directed towards members of the Estates who were not known as supporters of the Bill. The peasants were not taken into account, for persuading them seemed hopeless. Special attention was placed on the undecided Noble representatives. The liberal press was critical, and Aftonbladet accused the conservatives of buying votes (Ekman 1966, 125-134). On the side of the supporters of the Bill, there were two main strategies. On the one hand, they tried to show that the reform would be a good solution even for those who opposed the Bill. On the other, they more or less openly tried to frighten the opponents (Ekman 1966, 142). These two strategies were


often used together. However, the campaign organised by the Central Committee was moderate; information was preferred over pressure. In April 1864, the committee published 15,000 copies of the brochure Om representationsfrågan (On the Issue of Representation). The informative character of the committee’s campaign policy was confirmed by the fact the brochure contained, besides De Geer’s and the Committee on the Constitution’s arguments, critical arguments against the reform, as well. Instead of threatening the opponents, the committee chose to try to appeal to the patriotism of the Nobility and the Clergy (Ekman 1966, 142-146; Andrén 1937, 158; Svedelius 1889, 556). The committee had certain instructions which were sent to local organisers throughout the country in order to control the campaign. It was actually admitted privately that a sham debate was good enough. The most important thing was to show that there was a firm public conviction. During the spring of 1865, some 130 meetings were arranged. It was not uncommon for conservative opponents of the reform to appear at these meetings, nor was it a sign of an organised sabotage or counter-attack. On rare occasion, a meeting could backfire and become a failure because the peasant majority in attendance would be against the Bill. In Stockholm, the meetings were a success. In the whole country, some 60 000 people demonstrated their support for the reform Bill by signing petitions. The low turnout was a disappointment for the committee and consequently, it was assumed that the Bill would be defeated (Ekman 1966, 147-154). It should be noted that this scepticism does not cohere with evolutionary of explanations on the inevitability of the reform, which will be discussed in the next chapter. During the autumn of 1865, the conservative position was attacked in many newspapers. The political situation was described in such manner that all opposition was bound to fail. There were even articles which could have been regarded as threats. There was a growing concern about the possibility of a revolution or popular disturbance, like the one in 1848, being voiced in many papers. The argument went, if the Bill would be defeated there would be a national disaster. In November, Aftonbladet declared that the first Estate would sink into a pariah class if the Nobility did not pass the Bill. The paper reminded 12 its readers that a professor in Political Science, W. E. Svedelius, had made a prognosis in 1863 that there would be political chaos and perhaps absolutist rule ahead if the Bill would be defeated (Ekman 1966, 165-168). Articles on the rifle clubs were used as tools to demand parliamentary reform. August Blanche’s visited several rifle club festivals around the country in the summer of 1865 and gained a lot of publicity which made some in the political establishment nervous (Ekman 1966, 155; Verney 1957, 71; Petterson 1997). Maybe the pro-reform press did not directly use revolutionary propaganda, but it surely used the fear of revolution as a weapon. The atmosphere was tense in Stockholm during the autumn of 1865. An English diplomat reported that there was a danger of riots if the Bill would be defeated. A French diplomat, in turn, expected serious disturbances and 12

There will be more discussion about Svedelius in the next chapter.


speculated whether or not the rifle clubs would pressure the Nobility to vote for the reform. The potential of riots was sparked by a demonstration supporting the Danish war against Prussia in Stockholm on March 6, 1864. The demonstration had gotten out of hand and there riots broke out between the police and the demonstrators. Military force was used, and the Police Commissioner of Stockholm was accused of having used unnecessarily harsh methods. After a year, the disturbances were repeated, this time against the police. Thus, the risk seemed to be a real one in the autumn of 1865, and the government ordered military troops from rural garrisons to Stockholm. Some 2700 men were brought to the capital. Aftonbladet wrote that the political situation had not been so tense since 1809. In order to avoid more tensions, Police Commissioner Wallenberg was sent, with a hundred pounds in his pocket, on an European study tour for four days before the decisive meeting was to take place in the House of Nobility (Ekman 1966, 163-164, 229, 293-295). It is important to note that the issue of parliamentary reform was connected with political conflicts and especially national movements in other countries. For example August Blanche, August Sohlman, and S. A. Hedin manifested their sympathies with European radical national movements and their heroes, such as Garibaldi, Kossuth, Bakunin, and Polish patriots (see Kurunmäki 1992, 153-201; Kurunmäki 1996, 108-116). Before the final vote, there were revolutionary gatherings in Blanche’s home on Malmgården in Stockholm (Ekman 1966, 173). The most radical press on the ”left” side were divided. Fäderneslandet (The Fatherland) had been against the proposal, but changed its mind after the change 13 of the editor-in-chief in December 1863. The paper considered the Bill a gradual step towards universal suffrage. According to the displaced editor, Rudolf Munck af Rosenschöld he was fired as a result of a conspiracy headed by Blanche and Sohlman. A weekly journal, Framåt, and the satirical paper Söndags-Nisse supported the Bill, whereas Morgonbladet, Söndagsbladet, and Trissan were against it. The latter proclaimed to represent the masses and the working class. The dominant political system with its institutions — the monarchy, the court, the nobility, the state church, and the bureaucracy — were highly criticised. A revolutionary example was drawn from the United States, and the Civil War was seen as a struggle between freedom of the people and the oppression of the aristocracy. It was argued that the same struggle was about to arrive in Europe. Framåt wrote that the revolution was also justified in Sweden, a country where law was nonchalantly ignored by the authorities. “Sweden’s Garibaldi”, the peasant hero Engelbrekt from the 1430s, was presented as a representative of a legitimate revolution, and in October 1865 a statue of him was unvailed in Örebro (Ekman 1966, 174-175; see also Petterson 1997, 373-375). It can be said that the pressure against the conservatives was 13

Fäderneslandet had links with worker’s associations in Stockholm and it has generally been characterised as radical liberal. The paper was at the beginning against De Geer’s reform Bill. Only after a take-over in December 1863 by the soon-to-be-called nyliberals, did the paper do an about-face to support the Bill (Abrahamsson 1990, 277).


two-fold in the most radical papers, where it was argued that radical goals would only be reached through a revolution, and if the conservatives were to manage to defeat the reform, then there certainly would be a revolution ahead. The radicals rhetorically depicted the King as being on their side. In an article, which was probably written by S. A. Hedin, Fäderneslandet stated that Karl XV would lead the revolution himself, aided by the rifle clubs and the masses. The coup d'etat could be executed very fast, as seen in 1809. The author proclaimed that all means were legitimate to insure reform. A few days later, in October 1865, the secretary of the Central Committee and a former editor of Politisk Tidskrif, Samuel Ödmann, took over the chief editor’s post which resulted in the paper taking a more cautious stance. The purpose of the change was to subdue the tense atmosphere in Stockholm (Ekman 1966, 176-177). It was also claimed that Karl XV would ennoble new persons in order to get the majority in the House of Nobility. At the same time, it was clear that the King would loose his good position and reputation if he hesitated to give the needed support to the Bill. The King was used as a rhetorical weapon against the conservatives and put under pressure. Sometimes “revolution” was used as a pejorative term in Fäderneslandet. In such cases, the conservatives were made into revolutionaries, whereas the supporters were presented as antirevolutionaries (Ekman 1966, 180-182, 255, 261-263). De Geer took part in the propaganda for the reform in the autumn of 1865, assisted by another influential person, the Minister of Finance J. G. A. Gripenstedt. De Geer’s articles on the issue of reform were republished in the form of a pamphlet, and was distributed to the members of the Riksdag. In his articles, he had answered to the critique he had met in the writings of, among others, J. A. Södergren, Henning Hamilton, and J. J. Nordström. In short, the opponents of the reform Bill attacked joint elections, plutocratic qualifications, the level of the census, the size of the chambers, annual parliamentary sessions, the graded scale, and the use of the Provincial Councils as electorates for the First Chamber. Both De Geer and Gripenstedt argued for peaceful demonstrations by the public and warned about the use of aggressive propaganda. Instead, it was important to appeal to the patriotism of the conservatives. De Geer had explained earlier in the spring that he did not believe that there would be disturbances ahead since some of the radical leftist papers were against the Bill, and thus “the left” was divided (Ekman 1966, 156, 184, 284). When De Geer spoke to the so-called “Storm Deputation” in November, he described the position of the King in a similar manner as the radical press did. He gave the King credit for being an innovator of the Bill. By doing this, De Geer also made it more difficult for the King to express his opposition in the future (Verney 1957, 70). Not surprisingly, the conservatives condemned the addresses and deputations which were viewed as restrictions on the Parliament’s deliberate decision making capacity (Ekman 1966, 248). Those opposed to the reform were presented in the liberal and radical papers as a small, exclusive group of privileged elite, who were against “public opinion” and the real will of the people. It was an axiom of the liberal propaganda to appeal to the irresistible will of the people. It was also argued


that if the Bill would be defeated, the next proposal would be much more radical. “The proposal cannot be defeated”, was the often used phrase. The opponents of the proposal were reminded that the Bill was not only an outcome of strong “public opinion” and the “will of the people”, but also an outcome of the will of the King and the Government. The position of the government had become even clearer, when it became known that the government was planning to give the budget estimates only for the next year. This meant that there would be an extraordinary parliamentary session, if the Bill would be defeated. Moreover, De Geer announced that the government was unwilling to consider any changes to the reform Bill as a concession to conservative opinion, and that the government would stay in office even if the Bill were to be defeated. Instead, the Bill would be submitted again at some time later (Ekman 1966, 159162). Nevertheless, when the 1865 session of the Riksdag opened on October 16, it was commonly believed that the conservatives would be strong enough to vote the Bill down (Ekman 1966, 185; Verney 1957, 71). As we have seen, even some proponents of the Bill were sceptical about their own prospects. The aggressive pro-reform campaign together with De Geer’s assertive and uncompromising politics were two factors behind the turn in the political situation. During the second half of November alone, there were about 120 pro14 reform meetings throughout the country (Ekman 1966, 235). The third factor was the King’s speech from the throne on 24th of October, where Karl XV stated that an execution of the bill would “increase the security for the peaceful development of society” (quoted in Ekman 1966, 290). The speech was apparently written by De Geer (Ekman 1966, 290). Moreover, there were many who obviously feared an outbreak of violence if the Bill was to be defeated. Many thought that it was useless to vote against the Bill, because the Government would just present it again, while others were worried about the threat of a more radical proposition if the Bill would not pass (Ekman 1966, 212218). Now, if the government planned to stay in office in any case, if an extraordinary session of the Riksdag would be called, and if the King supported the reform, what good would it make to vote it down? It seemed useless to fight against the political situation, which was effectively constructed by the proreform side.

2.3 The final vote The inevitability of the reform has been an dominate explanation for the formation of the Riksdag Act of 1866, as will be shown in the next chapter of this study. However, Ekman seems to be aware of the importance of rhetorical 14

In the autumn of 1865, a worker’s association in Stockholm, Enighet och Frihet (Unity and Freedom), collected 1118 names in only a few days for a larger petition which contained 4266 names in total, and which was presented to De Geer. The rest of the names came from workers and craftsmen from different industrial areas (Ekman 1966, 238).


character and thus much more sensitive to human agency than those who base their arguments on, for example, social factors. He has noted that the rhetoric of “necessity” was an important factor during the final weeks of the reform debate. Thus, the opponents had to concentrate on convincing the voters that acceptance of the reform Bill was not a necessity. The conservative opponents of the Bill had to struggle to counteract the view that “the political situation” was such that a “no vote” would not be an unpatriotic act, nor would it bring about “a national disaster” (Ekman 1966, 327-332, 366). On December 4, the Bill was passed by both the Burgher and Peasant Estates. The vote in the Peasant Estate was “a high, loud, unanimous ‘yes’”; in the Burghers, it was 60 in favour and 5 against (Carlsson 1987, 192). Three days later, the Nobility held their final vote. The atmosphere was tense with uncertainty, and it has often been commented that there was lots of pathetic rhetoric in the air. The final day of the debate lasted into afternoon, and the crowd, which had gathered outside the house, was becoming restless. The Speaker noticed the situation and asked, whether it would be better to have the vote at the scheduled time so that the members of the Estate could go home before dark. The answer to this question was “yes”, and the Riddarhus passed the Bill with 361 votes for and 294 against (Andrén 1937, 170; Verney 1957, 7275). For Ekman, the numbers were the result of a reversal of opinion. At least 22 members of the Nobility were deserters, and 47 members abstained from voting because they opposed the Bill (Ekman 1966, 351-364). Consequently, the reform Bill was passed by the Nobility despite the fact that the majority of its members disapproved of it. The disappointment, combined with the notion of the honour of the nobility, was expressed through a list of names of those members of the Estate who voted against the Bill. The names were printed at the end of the minutes (Svedelius 1889, 573-574). When the results were published outside the building, there were cries of “hurrah” at the market place. It has been claimed that no Swedish political reform has been greeted with such joy as the decision of the Riddarhus that day (Carlsson 1987, 192). However, De Geer was calm, despite the success, and did not even salute the crowds by tipping his hat (Ekman 1966, 351). The Clergy decided on December 4th to await the decision of the Nobility before bringing the motion forward. On December 8th, the Estate passed De Geer’s Bill without putting the question to a vote. The situation of the Clergy 15 can be described in a way that resembles a simple game theory dilemma. In principle, the Clergy had the keys to both the best and the worst solution. The best situation would have been if the Clergy had defeated the reform Bill before the Nobility voted on it, and the Nobility later voted the Bill down. Then the Clergy would have gotten the credit for rejecting the reform. The worst situation would have been if the Clergy defeated the Bill, while the Nobility passed it. Then the Clergy would have been left alone and it would have 15

Rational choice and game theory have been used as an explanatory pattern by Leif Lewin in his study on the democratisation of Swedish political culture from the 1880s onwards (see Lewin 1984).


seemed like the Clergy Estate was standing against all three of the other Estates — against the King and the Council, and against “public opinion”. Surely, then the status of the Clergy would have been reduced. Thus, it was better to choose an alternative which was not desirable than to take the risk of drifting into a deadlock and the Clergy decided to wait until the Nobility took its stand. This was done by keeping the speeches so long, and great in number, that the needed three days would pass (Svedelius 1889, 576; Andrén 1937, 168). Mostly, arguments against the Bill were heard, and the existing system of representation was praised; yet there were some representatives from the provinces who voiced opinions that were quite similar to those of the peasants (Svedelius 1889, 576-578). The opponents of the Bill needed a counter proposal. The proposal was written by Henning Hamilton, who had been asked to lead the conservative campaign, and was finally presented after the decisive vote (Ekman 1966, 208209, 217). According to this, the Riksdag would be divided into two chambers; the First Chamber would be constructed upon corporate principles, which entailed the Nobility to keep their status as a political corporation. The right to vote in the Second Chamber was not restricted by property and income qualifications, but graded. It was to be elected according to a much wider franchise than what De Geer had proposed, including all men who paid municipal or state taxes. It was a concession to the liberals, in order to be able to maintain the conservative nature of the First Chamber. However, the graded scale watered down the democratic impression of the proposal. Moreover, the Parliament was to meet only once every three years, unless specially called by the King (Ekman 1966, 344-345; Verney 1957, 77; Kjellén 1915, 27; Svedelius 16 1889, 570-571). There has been some speculation about why the conservative faction came out so late with its own proposal, i.e. after the final vote. Carl Göran Mörner, who was the one who presented the proposal, explained that the publication of the proposal had been delayed because the book printers in Stockholm did not want to risk their reputation and revenues by printing the brochure, and consequently it was printed in Uppsala. When the students of the University of Uppsala heard about this, they were said to have tried to prevent the publication by threatening to burn down the printing press. Yet, another explanation claims that the delay in the conservative proposal was strategic. They did not want to have their counter proposal destroyed by the liberal press before the final vote (Andrén 1937, 198-200; Ekman 1966, 349-350; Verney 1957, 75-76; Nilsson 1967, 457-458). Verney has even questioned whether the conservatives were at all willing to defeat the reform Bill. Perhaps, the Nobles


Hamilton’s proposal had a rival proposition to compete with. It was presented by Arvid Posse, an influential member of the landed nobility, who was against the idea of retaining the Nobility as an independent element in parliamentary representation. Moreover, there were those, who opposed any fundamental changes to the Diet of the Four Estates (Ekman 1966, 346-349).


only pretended that they would loose out by the implementation of the reform (Verney 1957, 77). The opposition in the House of Nobility, in principle, shared a great deal of the values of the pro-reform government, like the status and authority of the King, and the notion of a balance between the Chambers, and between the Parliament and the Crown. However, what was in dispute was the political means to reach the common goal. It is therefore too hasty to make a conclusion that those who were against the government’s Bill were per definition conservative and the others liberal. For example, according to the opposition’s proposal, the First Chamber was not to become more aristocratic than the government’s Bill proposed. On the final day at the Riddarhus, Henning Hamilton was even ready to surrender the principle of class representation. He was also ready, with certain reservations, to accept the annual sessions of the Parliament. Thus, he went beyond his own demands which the opposition was to present a few days later. The fact that the government had made it clear that if the Nobility voted this Bill down, there would just be a new bill later, might have influenced Hamilton’s strategy (Nilsson 1967, 459-470; Nilsson 1969a, 252). It is important to note that the conservative opposition did not properly try to introduce a counter proposition, but instead it tried to get the government to modify its own proposition. To reach this goal the opposition tried to play De Geer against Gripenstedt. This attempt failed. The King was not much help any more, either (Gripenstedt 1872, 29-30; cf. Nilsson 1969b, 105-113).



3.1 Social changes and the demands of the times [N]ationens och tidens förändringar påkalla fortfarande förändringar i formen för denna representation. De fyra stånd, som förr delade folket i lika många klasser, hafva längesedan börjat sammansmälta, dels med hvarandra och dels med nya klasser, som brevid dem uppstått. Till fäderneslandets båtnad kan icke stånsindelningen bibehållas inom representationen längre, än den inom sjelfva folket eger en fast grund. Det måste derföre vara angeläget att, innan denna redan vittrade grund sönderfaller, bereda en ny, tidsenligare form att sätta i den gamlas ställe. (De Geer ; quoted in Aftonbladet 14.1.1863). [T]iden hade helt enkelt gått detta riksdagsskick förbi. (Kjellén 1915, 10). Tidens egen utveckling ställde på skilda områden ståndsväsendet på avskrivning, i vårt land som i andra länder. (Andrén 1937, 16).

The formation of the Riksdag Act of 1866 and its significance has not been widely debated. Both the Constitution of 1809 and the breakthrough of parliamentarism and universal suffrage between 1907 and 1921 have been of more interest to scholars. However, the reform has been attributed to being one of the links between the constitution and the breakthrough of democratisation. Moreover, it has been regarded as a part of the modernisation process of Swedish society  a sort of starting point. The reform has been examined a little more closely as a part of the struggle over universal suffrage and parliamentarism during the first two decades of the twentieth century. The interpretations given to the reform were a part of the argument for and against the widening of suffrage. The next period of growing interest in the reform

44 took place in the 1930s in a context in which the democratised state wanted to create a self-understanding of democratisation. The reform of 1866 was then discussed as a part of the history of the Riksdag. The third wave of special attention occurred in the 1960s. There were two main reasons for this. First, the reform had its centennial anniversary in 1966; second, social history was established as a method of studying history and began questioning old interpretations and consequently offering new perspectives and arguments. The first study that deals with the reform in detail was written by a professor in political science at the University of Uppsala, Wilhelm Erik Svedelius, whose book Representationsreformens historia (The history of the reform of representation) was published in 1889. Svedelius’ work is a rich source on the history of the political representation in Sweden, but it does not specifically analyse the reform of 1866. The subject is handled in a descriptive manner with a Whig historical ethos. The political Estates had just lost their representative role and the gradual reforms which were made in order to complement the Estates had not been effective. According to Svedelius, the question of political representation had become so critical that there would have been a violent crisis without the reform. The men of 1866 ”saved the fatherland”. The Peasant Estate was no longer as radical as it had been in the 1840s. The radical edges on both sides of the political field had softened, and ”public opinion” reigned throughout the 1860s (Svedelius 1889, 318, 543-544). Gunnar Rexius’ Det svenska tvåkammarsystemets tillkomst och karaktär (The Formation and Character of the Bicameral System) (1915) is usually the oldest point of reference for those looking for secondary interpretations of the 1866 Parliament Act. 1 It attributes the social changes which Sweden underwent as the deepest reasons behind the reform. The old privileges and estates were crumbling and new social classes were taking over. At the same time, the social changes did not explain when and why the issue of representation became a reality. The existence of certain constiututional formations in other countries unquestionably played a role. Rexius’ point is that the reform was the outcome of the proposals and theoretical discussions in the 1840s. According to him, in particular Tocqueville’s interpretation on the American representative system served as an inspiring example. The Parliament Act of 1866 was, for Rexius, the rational consequence of earlier discussions and attempts, whereas the Instrument of Government of 1809 and the Parliament Act of 1810 were ”historic” reforms. Rexius views these reforms as consequences of eighteenthcentury political thought. New ideas broke through in the 1830s; on the liberal side, the idea of the separation of powers gave way to parliamentarism; on the conservative side romanticism took over. Thus, the reform of 1866 was an 1

There is one study, which is three years older than that of Rexius’. Gustaf Florén’s Tillkomsten af 1866 års R.O (1912) is interesting as it combines critical and finalistic attitudes towards the Estates, on the one hand, and emphasises domestic tradition, on the other. To Florén, foreign impulses were unimportant. (Florén 1912, 124-126). Unfortunately, the study is clearly unfinished and for the purposes of this study, less valuable since it lacks explanations for and interpretations of the reform.

45 outcome of political ideas different than those of the constitution of 1809. Rexius has recognised the innovating and imported aspects of the reform and thus emphasised the discontinuity between the old system and the new. The bicameral Diet was modelled after the American one and adjusted to Swedish conditions. It was not based on the domestic tradition (Rexius 1915, vi-vii, 2426, 322-324). For scholarly purposes a standard work is still Georg Andrén’s Tvåkammarsystemets tillkomst och utveckling (The Formation and Development of the Bicameral System) which was published in 1937 in the Sveriges Riksdag series. Andrén points out that the issue of political representation was, in the beginning of the 1860s, an old one. The parliament’s organisation was an anachronism due to the development of society. It responded neither to the structure of society nor to the demands of political life. The four Estates were too exclusive and, moreover, their positions in society had changed. Political representation based on estates was ”out of date”. The ”times” had their own demands. Andrén maintains that the gap between parliamentary sessions, which were held every third year, was too wide and undermined the attempt to stabilise politics and create a solid parliamentary tradition. Thus, he explains the formation of the parliamentary reform as something which originated from the new demands of political life. These were, in turn, linked with changes in political ideas. A breakthrough of “principle of persons” (personlighetsprincip) via romantic philosophy and liberal ideas created radical demands for changing political representation from social representation to national representation. This transformation of attitudes towards political representation had already begun among “the men of 1809”. For example, in the memorial of the 1809 Committee on the Constitution it was stated that the duty of a member of the Riksdag was to attend to the national interest first and if possible other interests, such as local or corporate interests, second. According to Andrén, there already existed an idea of national representation in the constitution based on Estates. In the 1860s this principle was too extensive to fit inside the old form (Andrén 1937, 9, 16-19). What is important in Andrén’s interpretation, is that he takes the idea of a national representation based on individuals to explain the reform of 1866. The reform has often been interpreted as an outcome of the influence of liberal ideas in political and economic thought (e.g. Edén 1935, 240-241). As mentioned earlier, those who opposed Estate privileges, the King, and his Council were usually called “liberals”. Moreover, previous studies tend to explain the reform as a, more or less, inevitable consequence of “the demands of the times”. The “times” has been used as an explanatory factor for the reform either in the sense of “social time” which means that changes occur in harmony with other broader changes in society, or in the sense of “institutional time” which means that political institutions develop following the patterns of more developed constitutions. Thus, political representation that was based on estates was ”out of date” (Andrén 1937, 19; Kjellén 1915, 10; Stjernquist 1996, 14).

46 The changing of the system of representation has always, at least partly, been explained by social changes. In fact, the emphasis on social factors has made it difficult for historians to question the inevitability of parliamentary reform. The effect of inevitability is even stronger when social explanations have been combined with a tendency to view parliamentary reforms as progressive steps. 2 This kind of constitutional Whig history runs the risk of being misleading even if we do find different interpretations of the same reform from authors with different political standpoints. Indeed, there has been a tendency to view the Parliament Act of 1866 as a part of an organic tradition of Swedish constitutionalism. This has particularly been the case among conservative historians and political scientists of the early twentieth century, but this view has also been developed by the “left” and/or liberals. Nevertheless, the traditional Swedish line of thought has left more room to alternative interpretations and political explanations than pure social historical interpretations, mainly because the political positions of the authors have varied. Even if the interpretations have been based on the same goal, it has still been interpreted in different ways. This is not reason to deny the well documented role of social changes in the fall of the estate system (e.g. Fahlbeck 1934, 453; Edén 1935, 241; Andrén 1965, 73; Tingsten 1967, 13; Carlsson 1987, 189). It has been generally accepted that the political Estates that represented the people in the Riksdag did not correspond with the social and political divisions of the population. Indeed, Swedish society went through great changes during the nineteenth century, and it is easy to maintain that the Estates did not represent the people in terms of population. However, it is questionable whether this was even the intention, since the Estates represented the Swedish people as organic corporations. According to this view, all of the most important interests were actually represented and the people were virtually represented. This system met difficulties when the Estates excluded too many people, who had gained an economic position to be counted. It has been argued that the four-estate system corresponded to the population of the country in the seventeenth century, and in many sense still in the early nineteenth century. This holds more true in Sweden than in many other countries since the peasants formed the fourth Estate in terms of political representation. The institution of representation has been regarded as a sound one, even if there were some practical inconveniences (Hildebrand 1896, 630; Kjellén 1915, 7-8; Heckscher 1943, 126-127). However, the inadequacy of the existing system became all too apparent even for those who wanted to save the

2 Torbjörn Nilsson has, correctly, noted that the concept of democratisation has been dominant in studies on the development of Swedish parliamentary life. The role and character of the First Chamber has then been neglected and described as something which is not interesting and self-evident (See Nilsson 1994). I share Nilsson’s uneasiness with the general ethos of progress in history writing, and in parliamentary history in particular.

47 political Estates. In 1840, proposals with openly conservative labels begun to compete with liberal ones (Heckscher 1943, 147, 199). 3 The problem was understood as follows: educated people of standing were a group three times larger than the two highest Estates put together. Between 1809 and 1866 several attempts were made to include these people in the four Estates. However, the first attempt was made by some non-noble civil servants as early as 1719. The Parliament Act of 1810 also acknowledged the problem, but the first extension of Estate representation did not occur until 1823 when the Clergy opened its doors to university representatives, nearly a century after the problem was first publicly voiced. Two members from each faculty and two from the Swedish Academy of Science were allowed to attend the Estate. Soon after, in 1830, the non-noble iron-masters were permitted to join the Burghers. The Burghers went through a major reform in 1858 when all those who possessed a defined amount of property  in practice the houseowners in towns  were enfranchised. A reform took place in the Peasant Estate in 1845 when peasants owning tax-exempt land (frälsehemmansägare) were admitted membership. In 1863, the rest of the property owning rural middle class men (ståndspersoner) were also enfranchised. The Nobles remained unchanged (Verney 1957, 32-33; cf. Svedelius 1889, 196-197; Kjellén 1915, 11-12; Wallin 1961, 7-8). It seems that gradual reforms were not possible in the Noble Estate, which was based exclusively on privilege. These kind of changes would have defeated the whole idea of a non-elected, self-defined Nobility in parliament. Much attention has been paid to the Estate’s attempts to try and reform itself. When the calls for total reform became more and more frequent, even those who sympathised with the old system reluctantly accepted partial reforms. These partial reforms, in turn, made the Riksdag more open for “total reform”. The critical voices became louder. There were, then, two kinds of arguments for reform: technical inefficiency and political ideology (Fahlbeck 1934, 433-444; cf. Edén 1935, 240-243). The conservatives lacked innovations and remained at a standstill. The minor victories they won in hindering a total reform were tactical ones. These, in turn, produced a strategic failure in 1866 (Heckscher 1943, 247-249). When examining social explanations, instead of asking the reasons why the reform occurred, it is helpful to turn the questions around and ask, “if the 3 The population of Sweden was approximately 1,750,000 in 1750 and 4,100,000 in 1865. The greatest increase occurred among the poorer agricultural population who doubled between 1750 and 1860 and by 1860 surpassed the number of crofters and cottagers and other poorer classes. What is important, however, is that this was generally considered a social, not a political, problem (Verney 1957, 21). While property-owning middle class people, non-noble persons of standing (ståndspersoner), who were outside the system of political representation was considered a political one. According to the last estate-based official statistics in 1855, two-thirds of the population were included in the four estates. Farmers made up 65.35 per cent of the whole population, burghers 2.24, clergy 0.42, and nobles 0.32 percent. People of education and standing, who were excluded from the estates, made up 2.18 percent of the population. About thirty percent of the population belonged to lower social groups, the so-called masses (Verney 1957, 14; see also Fahlbeck 1892, 54-55).

48 estate system did not correspond to ”social reality”, why did the reform not occur earlier?” After all, the proposals for a thorough reform, which were made between 1809 and 1866, were not successful, and it seems that the history of parliamentary reform before 1866 is the history of losers. Consequently, there must have been political manoeuvres on both sides of the struggle since the reform did not happen automatically. Or should we rely on the conclusion that the “first Swedish social historian” Pontus Fahlbeck made when he claimed that estate privileges had been abolished continuously during the last two centuries, as an accepted evolutionary inevitability? According to Fahlbeck, the division of labour in the society was the reason for the existence of the Estates as well as for their demise (Cf. Fahlbeck 1892, 24-25, 37). Or should we rather rely on Verney, who makes a somewhat two-sided conclusion in his Parliamentary Reform in Sweden 1866-1921 (1957) when he, on the one hand, refers to modern requirements and, on the other hand, states that there was no steady progress towards an inevitable and complete reform of Parliament? (Verney 1957, 3334). 4 Social structures and changes may help us to understand why a certain political reform took place, but they do not explain how it happened and what consequences the reform had. Moreover, social and economic changes, structures and institutions are themselves results of political actions and not something that is outside human agency. As a consequence, the rhetoric of social and economic changes, and the demands of the times need to be analysed from the empirical sources. The legislative and institutional changes that took place in the middle of the nineteenth century have also been cited as reasons that the reform took place. An important precondition of the reform was the fact that local representation had been reorganised in 1862 (e.g. Hildebrand 1896, 633; Edén 1935, 242-243; Carlsson 1973, 325; Carlsson 1987, 191). This reform made it easier for De Geer to construct the upper chamber in a “federalist” manner and thus create a difference of character between the chambers. Freedom of industry and commerce, free associations, and a free press were all prerequisites in building a new political culture in which “public opinion” was formed and appealed to at the same time. One general way of arguing that the reform was more or less necessary is to maintain that there was constitutional pressure from other countries (Stjernquist 1996, 14; Nilsson 1994, 62). This argument that the constitutions of other countries required a reform in Sweden is understandable, since there was no other Western European country which maintained the system of Estates for political representation after 1848. The question of foreign influences and examples has often been asked by the commentators, as well. The most important example for the Swedish reformers was no doubt the Norwegian 4

Verney also interprets the reform from a sociological perspective arguing that the construction of the railway network in the country was of great importance as it made the population less static. Only 66 kilometers of track in use in 1856, 527 kilometers in 1860, and 1305 in 1865 (Verney 1957, 21-22). The railways played a major role in mobilising the country. It is generally accepted that the expansion of the railway system, in Sweden as well as in other countries, was a part of the nation-building processes.

49 constitution. After all, the country was formally the other half of the union under the Swedish Crown. Norway created already in 1814 a unicameral body of representation, which, however, contained a kind of upper chamber. 5 Another important and obvious point of reference was the Danish constitution of 1849 with its universal male suffrage and a bicameral representative body. The bicameral system of representation in the United States played a role for the Swedish reformers, as well as the British parliamentary system, which was a kind of universal point of reference in discussions on political representation. There are two levels of foreign examples that concern us. Firstly, the actual discussion on the foreign impulses in De Geer’s proposal; secondly, scholarly debates on the character of the constitution of 1809. The latter was lively discussed especially during the two first decades of the twentieth century. Different interpretations on 1809 can be traced also to different views on the reform of 1866. In short, the question was, whether the constitutional reforms followed the domestic tradition or foreign patterns. If the Instrument of Government of 1809 was interpreted as influenced by Montesquieu and the English model, as was maintained first of all by Axel Brusewitz in the early twentieth century, then the 1866 reform could more easily been taken as a part of international constitutional variations. It is important to keep in mind that the interpretations have been more or less mixed in character, and in practice has also taken into account political action and even political struggle. The series of failed reform proposals has taught historians to see the political struggle, although this aspect has been underrated. The significance of political struggle has best been recognised mostly by those who have focused on the final stages of the formation of the 1866 Parliament Act. For example, Göran B. Nilsson discussed at length the final debates at the House of Nobility on December in 1865 in his Den samhällsbevarande representationsreformen (The Society-preserving Reform of Representation) (1969), and Stig Ekman focused upon to the contest within the Noble Estate in his Slutstriden on representationsreformen (The Final Struggle on the Reform of Representation) (1966). These studies have offered explanations which take into account an individual political action. However, it seems that these studies, in turn, refrain from explaining why the reform occurred. The social changes still lay behind the reform. There is one general aspect in the explanations for the reform, which leaves more room for political actors, and thus for political timing, than others. It views the reform as a consequence of an individual project. The credit has then been largely given to De Geer. Rexius’ main point was to show that De Geer was highly influenced by Tocqueville and the American bicameral system, and according to Verney, De Geer’s role against the originally reluctant Karl XV was crucial (Verney 1957, 47). Kihlberg maintained that without the energy and skills of De Geer’s government the reform campaign would never had succeeded (Kihlberg 1922, 74-79, 91-95). De Geer’s role was actually 5

Stortinget was split into two sections. The smaller part, lagting, was chosen by Stortinget itself. The rest was called odelsting.

50 strengthened in his memoirs (see De Geer 1892). Whether De Geer worked single-handedly or not, it cannot be denied that he was the person who formulated the reform Bill, presented it to the King, and defended it in the press and in the parliament. 6 King Karl XV has also been given some of the credit from the reform because he adopted a pro-reform stance and consequently swayed indecisive members of the Riddarhuset (Eriksson 1954, 382; Ekman 1966, 12-14). As revealed in the previous chapter, the King conceivably changed his mind in 1861, after Napoleon III advised him to combine his plans for a Scandinavian union with parliamentary reform (Holmberg 1946, 363, 370-371; Edén 1935, 243; Andrén 1937, 26; Ekman 1966, 27, 257-259). The King was bound to abandon his negative attitude towards the reform Bill in late 1865 because De Geer and his colleagues did not withdraw the proposal. Moreover, wide public support and protests across the country influenced the King (Ekman 1966, 50-51; Eriksson 1954, 319-324; Edén 1935, 249). Consequently, political protests have been regarded as one of the background factors of the reform. National liberal currents in Europe were well represented in Sweden, and the Italian Risorgimento and the Polish uprising in 1863 inspired the Swedish national liberal radicals who combined their national ideas with the demand for parliamentary reform (Johannesson 1987, 117-131; Eimer 1978, 418; Furlani 1977). This link has mainly been noted in studies on Scandinavianism.

3.2 The significance of the reform After the reform, the right to vote was nearly as restricted as before. Of adult men, 20 percent could vote in 1870 and some labourers had a vote, particularly ironworkers. The franchise for electing the Provincial Councils, which formed the electoral colleges for the First Chamber, was double that of the Second Chamber; but the graded voting scale and the admission of businesses to the voting register nullified the width of the franchise. It has often been argued that the 1866 Parliament Act was a victory for the middle classes in Sweden. There are, however, some variations in the interpretations. One dispute deals with the question, whether the bicameral system was originally intended to have a more exclusive First Chamber or both chambers ‘based on the same people’. Rexius argued that De Geer made an error in calculation, and that the First Chamber became much more exclusive and conservative than originally intended. The parliament, originally adapted from the American model, turned out to be more English. (Rexius 1915, 319-320, 347-348). Andrén, and especially Hultqvist and Nilsson, in turn, claimed that the plutocratic character of the First 6

Besides De Geer, the role of Finance Minister Gripenstedt, who is known from the liberal economic reforms of the 1850s and 1860s, has also been noticed (e.g. Nilsson 1969a, 256-258).

51 Chamber was foreseen and planned by De Geer (Andrén 1937, 134-135; Hultqvist 1959, 79-82; Nilsson 1969, 198-204, 252-255). It was actually not the middle classes who benefited from the reform, but rather the old aristocracy together with peasants. As we have seen, Nilsson characterised the reform as the “Societypreserving” reform. He maintained that the composition of the new Riksdag was more consciously planned by De Geer than what Rexius argued. Both the changes in the tax system and the reform of the Provincial Councils were imminent when De Geer presented the government’s Bill. When he stated that the power should be put into hands of the “middle classes”, he did not mean that middle class representatives would sit in the First Chamber, but rather that the middle classes would be able to elect representatives. According to Nilsson, the plural form “middle classes” (medelklasserna) was used by De Geer in order to include propertied land-owning peasants. De Geer was aware that the majority of the representatives in the Second Chamber would be peasants (Nilsson 1969a, 198-209). The fear that the peasants would win too much power was one of the major arguments against the reform proposal. De Geer acknowledged this and appeased anti-reformists by giving the towns and cities a relative advantage in his proposal. Rexius interpreted the reform as a sort of break from the old estate system in Sweden, whereas later scholars, especially Nilsson, have stressed continuity at least in the sense of exclusive class differences. According to Rexius, not only was there a calculation error, but also an ideological error in judgement behind the “English” outcome of De Geer’s bicameral creation. De Geer mistakingly relied on the liberals – for Rexius, Manchester liberals – who underestimated the social conflicts and took for granted the liberal harmony in society. They assumed that the middle classes would gain the majority in both chambers. However, they lost both. Democracy was not an issue for De Geer. (Rexius 1915, 350-352). Nevertheless, Rexius noted that it is possible to see the reform in a light of restoration. The two upper Estates had been loosing their position to the two lower ones, and the construction of an exclusive upper chamber rebalanced the power relationship (Rexius 1915, 334). Andrén agrees with Rexius when he claims that De Geer underestimated the political consequences of an exclusive First Chamber. According to Andrén, De Geer intended to strike a compromise between plutocratic and democratic principles (Andrén 1937, 135). It is generally agreed that this compromise led to an antagonistic relationship between the two chambers, between “Lords” (herrar) and “peasants” (bönder). A striking feature of the new Parliament of 1867 was its surprising similarity, rather than difference to the old estates; 57 of the new members of the Second Chamber had been in the Peasant Estate and 31 had been Burghers. In the First Chamber there were 64 former members of the House of Nobility, 5 Clergy representatives, and 13 former Burghers. The total number of representatives in the First Chamber was 125. (Verney 1957, 88-89). Verney concluded that “[i]n rejecting the hereditary principle when considering the

52 form of the First Chamber, De Geer did not necessarily show preference for the American Senate rather than the British House of Lords, as appears to be the implication of some of the comments on the 1866 Parliament Act. He was simply following his own choice of a ‘capitalist conservatism’. This suggests that he had departed from the belief that birth or title alone gave a man the right to sit in Parliament, but had not reached the stage of thinking in American terms of popular, though indirect, electing.” (Verney 1957, 87). There are, nevertheless, interpretations which defend De Geer’s genuine intent, and thus Rexius’ point. For example, Carlsson maintains that De Geer actually misjudged the consequences of the census and property qualifications. It was a kind of paradox that the reform was based on real property at the same time as the economic life was becoming more financial. (Carlsson 1973, 330-331; see also Edén 1935, 257-258). Another issue has been whether or not the reform marked a major step towards a parliamentary system and towards modern political institutions and procedures. Formally, the reform dealt with reorganisation, not necessarily something that would change constitutional relations between different institutions (e.g. Edén 1935, 251). However, the reform has been taken as a decisive event, after which the Riksdag began to develop a modern legislative body. According to Verney, the reform was as much a landmark in Swedish parliamentary history as the 1832 Reform Act was in England (Verney 1957, vii, 1). To Edén, the idea of separation of powers gave gradually way to the practice of leading Riksdag (Edén 1935, 268). In this respect, the most important innovation of the new Reform Act was the introduction of annual sessions – a necessary condition of parliamentarism. The Constitution of 1809 regulated the interval to every fifth year, which was amended in 1844 to every third year. It has been argued that annual sessions made it possible for the parliament to better control the government, which, in turn, has been interpreted as the first step towards a parliamentary system (e.g. Stjernquist 1966, 33; von Sydow 1997, 39, 57, 62; Forssberg 1931, 22). 7 What actually strengthened the position of the Riksdag was its increasing stability. Before 1866, the King could entertain the possibility that parliamentary policies would change between sessions, but after 1866, the annual Parliaments made it impossible to delay action on the hope of a differing policy (Verney 1957, 125; Herlitz, 1928, 260). Annual sessions were a feared


According to the Constitution of 1809, the Riksdag controlled the Council through its Committee on the Constitution, which examined the minutes of the Council of State. Although ministers were responsible only for their advice to the King, all executive acts were to be countersigned by another minister. However, a signature was never refused during 1809-1866. If the ministers disagreed with the King, they made a reservation in the Council minutes and, in extreme cases, resigned. There were no instances of resignations of entire Councils and there was no development of a English-style Cabinets. The Council consisted largely of senior members of the Civil Service, rather than of members of Parliament. (Verney 1957, 3-9) It was organised as the highest executive department, placed in conjunction to the King, rather than as an organ for political co-operation and independent activity (Kihlberg 1922, 13).

53 invention for the conservatives, despite the fact they had already been proposed in 1859. The uniformity and solidity of the composition of the Council changed during the 1860s (von Sydow 1997, 56-57). The King had lost against the majority of his ministers on two occasions. The first time was during the viceroy conflict (ståthållarstriden) in 1859-1860 when Karl XV had personally promised the Norwegian parliament to abolish the office of the Governor of Norway without consulting his ministers and the Parliament. As mentioned in the previous chapter, the King later gave way to the “Swedish” majority in his Council as well as in Parliament. The Second time was in 1863-64 when the King promised to give military support to Denmark, a promise which he later recanted. (e.g. Forssberg 1931, 21; von Sydow 1997, 46-48; Torbacke 1990, 49). The King was left with only his conservative advisors and liberal Scadinavianists. Despite several attempts, he had failed to change the Government (von Sydow 1997, 48, 56). To make the Council a more serviceable instrument for his policy, Karl XV had made it more homogenous in both composition and method, but failed to give it the firm leadership it required. This created a paradox when the serviceable instrument soon proved to be the master. (Verney 1957, 44; von Sydow 1997, 39). The role of De Geer was central in this matter. In 1861, in one of his memorandums to the King, he implied an eventual change of ministerial policy, threatening that “if the Government (regering) was unwilling to put its moral weight into the scale on the side of reform” he would resign (Verney 1957, 47; Kihlberg 1922, 93; Edén 1935, 243-245). De Geer made the issue of reform, an issue for the whole ministry. De Geer warned, or threatened, that if the reform would not pass the entire government would resign. However, he did not want to create any form of parliamentary government, but rather remodel the legislature. He believed that the government should stay outside of party struggles. As a civil servant, he did not have think like a politician; he did not strive to become the leader of the governmental party after the reform (Verney 1957, 85). He saw himself as a president of a Council rather than a Prime Minister (Forssberg 1931, 25). He saw the weakness of the Estate system, and the “impossibility of having strong government” and wanted to improve it. He did not consider the introduction of a bicameral legislature an implied challenge to the Executive’s authority of the legislature (Verney 1957, 47, 68). De Geer’s Ministry was the first Government to have wide public support and “public opinion” was on their side on the issue of parliamentary reform (Edén 1935, 245-246). During the debates on the reform proposal, the Government was labelled as the “Ministry of reform”, the “Ministry of public opinion”, and the “National Ministry” (Kihlberg 1922, 100). The Ministry was strong during the debates on parliamentary reform, but it soon became weaker. Resignations from the Council continued to be individual. In many respects, the Crown managed to retain its superiority. (Verney 1957, 93, 113-119). 8 8

The Ministry faced its first important crisis in 1868 when the Second Chamber refused to give the money for the defence budget. Four Ministers tried to resign, but the

54 Although the Minister of Justice was called the Prime Minister after 1876, there was no resignation of office by a whole Ministry until 1905. The introduction of the office of the Prime Minister (Statsminister) was actually not a sign of modern parliamentary intentions. On the contrary, the initiative came from an opponent of parliamentary reform, Henning Hamilton, who feared that the Government would be too weak. 9 Two conflicting expectations were involved. On the one hand, one could expect that the governmental power would increase when the government had a unifying leader; on the other, one hoped that the Prime Minister would undermine the position of the King and the dualism in the constitutional praxis (Ruin 1990, 94-95). In the latter case, there would be a cabinet government, in Bagehot’s sense (see Bagehot 1867). Thus, the royalists and supporters of parliamentary system shared interests. 10 Oskar II, after the death of Karl XV in 1872, made De Geer Prime Minister as a kind of guarantee of reliability because of his success in instituting parliamentary reform (Rexius 1917, 184-185; Forssberg 1931, 26-27; Nilsson 1994, 53-54; von Sydow 1997, 62-63). Thus, the reform of 1866 did not necessarily make institutional progress, but rather “good history”. It became a part of conservative legitimising rhetoric. There is general agreement that the reform of 1866 marked a shift in the relations between the parliament and the executive power. Annual sessions made the Riksdag stronger, and the role of De Geer in the reform made the Council more like a Ministry. The first step occurred in 1840 with the reform of the departments of the Council in which the unity of the composition was strengthened (e.g. Carlsson 1990, 36-39; Torbacke 1990, 45; Nyman 1981, 15-16). Rexius maintains that De Geer intended to create a system of bicameral parliamentarism. It was, however, difficult to combine the bicameral system with equal chambers to parliamentarism and the difference in character between the chambers made it even more so. (Rexius 1915, 342-346). As we have seen, it is, nevertheless, commonly believed that De Geer did not have any kind of intention to enter into a parliamentary system. The extent of parliamentarism after the 1866 reform has been interpreted largely by the political climate of the times. For example, in the 1910s, the “right” used the constitution of 1809 and the 1866 Riksdag Act as examples of compromises, whereas the “left” emphasised parliamentary aspects of the 1866 King refused to accepted them. Instead he declared that the Riksdag Act did not change the spirit of the constitution, and that such a resignation would simply imply parliamentary control over the ministry. Even liberal newspapers such as Aftonbladet and Handels- och Sjöfartstidningen commented that the time was not ripe for parlamentarism. However, four years later Karl XV was forced to concede that it was impossible to govern without parliamentary support. (Verney 1957, 93, 113-119; Torbacke 1990, 49; von Sydow 1997, 79). 9 In the dynamics of political reforms, it is often the case that conservatives put forth reforms in order to avoid uncontrollable radical changes. This shall be discussed later in the chapter which deals with the temporality of parliamentary reforms. 10 Royalists found support for their cause through the examples of Bismarck in Germany and Cavour in Italy. They showed that the office of the leader of the government did not have to reduce the power of the monarch. Moreover, the Danish conservative government was able to stand against the constitutional claims of the parliament. (Torbacke 1990, 53).

55 reform (Paajaste 1998, 204, 209; cf. Rexius 1917, 181-182). For Rexius, the Riksdag Act of 1866 was about constitutionalism. The dualism within the Parliament was a guarantee against a parliamentary system and for the dualism between the King and the Riksdag (Rexius 1917, 182-193). Fahlbeck is especially critical towards the constitutional development after the parliamentary reform of 1866. 11 According to him, two major mistakes were made which began to weaken the power of the King and thus the dualism and balance between the King and the legislative body. First, it was a mistake to open the sessions of Parliament to the Ministers in 1860. The intention had been to strengthen the contacts between the King and the Riksdag, and give Ministers an opportunity to defend Government’s proposals. However, the result was the strengthening of the Riksdag, not the King or the Government. Consequently, Fahlbeck states that a government that cannot lead Parliament must stay out of it. Second, it was a mistake to introduce annual parliamentary sessions; the representative body became too strong. The Riksdag should be a passive part of the dual system, while the Government an active one. The change upset this balance. Moreover, the King had lost his power because of the increasing economic legislative power of the Riksdag. Economic legislation had increased remarkably during the last two-three decades of the estate system. The Government had become too dependent on the Parliament, and what made it even worse, the King had lost power over the Council. The King was the big looser, and the Council was not strong enough to balance the Riksdag. (Fahlbeck 1904, 70-78, 187-191, 203-211; cf. Kihlberg 1922, 124). It should be noted that Fahlbeck was not only critical towards “liberal” policies but also towards a state idealistic doctrine, personified by professor Boström, because it put all of the power in the hands of the monarch (Fahlbeck 1904, 213). Besides the afore mentioned political struggles, interpretations on parliamentarism in Sweden refer to the Age of Liberty, i.e. the period between 1719 and 1772 when, in practice, the Riksdag had sovereign power over the King and the Council. In particular, Fredrik Lagerroth who was on the “liberal” side in the struggle over universal suffrage and parliamentarism in the 1910s, yet still a traditionalist like his conservative colleagues, argued that the Age of Liberty was an age of parliamentarism (see Lagerroth 1915). It is worth noting that the Age of Liberty made it possible to view parliamentarism as part of the domestic political culture. However, Lagerroth argued that the constitutional development in the nineteenth century was influenced by constitutional ideas in other countries (Lagerroth 1942, III). Consequently, it has been maintained that the Age of Liberty was a special era with early features of parliamentarism, but that modern parliamentarism had its origins in the political praxis of the 1860s and grew successively from then on (von Sydow 1990, 71-72; von Sydow 1997, 13-15). The development of modern parliamentarism is then seen in two 11

Fahlbeck and Rexius share a conservative view of the state. However, Fahlbeck’s reasoning differs slightly, perhaps because of the differing rhetorical context of his text. Rexius was polemical against liberal arguments, whereas Fahlbeck, writing more than a decade earlier, did not see so many positive sides of the current constitutional praxis.

56 stages in Sweden. The first stage began in the 1860s when the Council became more independent from the King and thus more uniform in character than earlier. The second stage gradually developed in the beginning of the twentieth century when the Ministry became increasingly dependent on the Riksdag. Parliamentarism became a praxis until the end of the 1910s, but this happened without a formal declaration in the Constitution. However, Swedish parliamentarism remained weak during the 1920s, a period referred to as Riksdagsparliamentarism and minority parliamentarism. (von Sydow 1990, 86-87; 1990, 98-99; Nyman 1981, 14, 19). The importance of the 1866 Riksdag Act can be seen in, at least, two different ways. In a conservative and traditionalist view, the reform was something that disturbed the traditional balance of powers. In a traditionalist and “parlamentarian” view the reform was something that reopened the possibilities of parliamentarism. A variation on this second view, or perhaps a third, is seen by taking a critical stand on the Age of Liberty and only stressing features of modern parliamentarism. Seen in this way, the first signs of parliamentarism in the beginning of the twentieth century were based on developments after the 1866 Riksdag Act. Modern political parties can be seen as signs of modern political culture in general, and of parliamentarism in particular. The parliamentary reform was a kind of kick-off for modern political parties in Sweden. The fact that parliamentary sessions were held every year and that no membership in the parliament was based on holding a position in office made it easier for solid political groupings to act strategically over time. However, this was not the intention of the moderate ”liberals” who formulated the reform. On the contrary, the dominate view held that political opinion and acting should be matters of individual choice, and coteries and parties were something inherently bad. This was a commonly shared view among European liberals during the nineteenth century and a raison d’être behind the reform. Instead of collective pressure organisations, there would be deliberating individuals in parliament. (Cf. Back 1966, 5; Nilsson 1994, 20-21). A dominant moderate view was that one should not run a personal campaign (Esaiasson 1990, 63, 68). Many of the former radical liberal Scandinavianists founded The New Liberal Party (nyliberala partiet) in 1868. The party was created around a program that was written by Adolf Hedin in 1867. It called for parliamentarism in the British style, the extension of suffrage, a lowering of the eligibility qualifications to parliament, the reduction of administrative expenses, universal conscription, the emancipation of women, and Scandinavianism (Hedin 1904, 157; see also Carlsson 1987, 198). The party remained small and broke up over defence issues in 1871. The first somewhat “modern” political party was the peasant party, Lantmannapartiet, which was founded in the Second Chamber in 1867. 12 It was not a modern party in the sense of mass mobilisations of power, 12

Count Arvid Posse, an estate-owner from Scania who had been one of the De Geer’s loudest opponents, gathered a number of the new members of the Riksdag, most of whom were farmers, for a meeting in January, 1867. The purpose was to create a list of “anti-

57 but it was a party in the parliament. It had a published program, defined goals, regular meetings, disciplinary methods against those who broke against party’s policy, and tactical strategies of voting. The party was generally against the government and bureaucracy. (Back 1966, 6-7; Carlsson 1987, 196-197; von Sydow 1997, 72-73; Thermaenius 1928; Thermaenius 1933, 15-17). In addition to parties, election campaigns also changed after 1866. The change was most evident among the Nobles as elections were a new phenomenon for them. The Peasants and the Burghers were used to elections and the first election to the Second Chamber did not differ much from previous campaigns. (Esaiasson 1990, 63-81; Wallin 1961, 2, 101-179). 13 It has been maintained that the liberals were at the helm during the ten years before the parliamentary reform when the “boom” ended and the new conservative coalition was formed (Carlsson 1987, 186; Stråth 1988, 24-29). “Liberals” and “conservatives” were the loosely used party labels during the half a century before the parliamentary reform, after which new party distinctions were made. Unlike many others, Heckscher has argued that the parliamentary reform was an end of old conservatism. The conservatives had won in the sense that the bicameral system blocked the possibilities of parliamentarism. However, they had used their energy for the campaign and were thus out of new theories and ideas. Liberalism, on the other hand, survived as an ideology even after the liberal coalition dissolved. (Heckscher 1943, 197, 245-250). Elvander agrees with Heckscher that the conservatives unilaterally concentrated on the issue of parliamentary reform, but argues that this did not mean that the conservatives had run out ideas. According to him, a new kind of conservatism could be seen in the new coalition, one that fought against the reform and tried to ensure the status quo. (Elvander 1961, 20). It is, in fact, easy to find interpretations which stress conservative consequences of the reform. Nilsson concluded that the reform was, according ministerial” members of Parliament for committee elections. The composition of the leading members was interesting. Alongside Posse, there was a former member of “the Rosenberg Party”, Carl Ifvarsson, and a national liberal activist, Emil Key, who later became the leading ideologist of the new party. It was Key who introduced the term lantman, “agrarian”, a term which proved useful when uniting estate owners and peasants. Key attacked “free trade radicalism” in 1864 and supported the reform of representation. Free trade was, according to Key, theoretically correct, but its application one-sided. The party gained a majority in the Second Chamber in 1868. (Carlsson 1987, 196-197). 13 The history of electoral campaigns begins in 1719. Campaigns were often held in the parliament after elections. The censure made it difficult to recruit people openly outside the parliament. After 1809, the situation was somewhat reversed compared to the Age of Liberty. Parties were weak yet open, public discussions on politics were lively. The press, political meetings, and pressure organisations grew. Nevertheless, electoral campaigns were relaxed and seldom personal during the early nineteenth century. The indirect method of election and the fact, that political differences were considered larger between Estates than within them, did not encourage cognisant campaigns. During the election of the Second Chamber in 1866 there were more signs of campaigns in towns, than in the countryside. There were some attempts made among some radical liberals to campaign in public, but tit did not receive much enthusiasm. The new rules and processes of elections were unclear. So much so, that nearly every third election was appealed to the provincial authorities. (Esaiasson 1990, 63-81).

58 to ideological principles, a moderate liberal one because there was an individual vote, and conservative one because of the interest and class-based division in the two chambers. According to him, different social interests were not expected to harmonise automatically, hence the conservative guarantees. (Nilsson 1969a, 252-254). 14 Lewin states that after 1866 the conservative opposition that had been against the Bill claimed victory with the same arguments that De Geer used during his campaign. Consequently, the reform of 1866 laid the groundwork for the political positions that were later actualised during the struggle over universal suffrage between the 1890s and the 1910s. (Lewin 1984, 74-75). It has also been maintained that the Nobles actually did not loose. It was an exclusively aristocratic group that was the looser, since there was no joint opposition among the nobles (Carlsson 1973, 324). Edén concluded that in a constitutional sense the Riksdag Act of 1866 was a conservative reform without any democratic intentions, but the annual sessions opened up the possibility of gradual change (Edén 1935, 260-261). 15 By continuing to exist for another six months after the reform Bill was passed, in order to take case of the remaining business of the session, the Estates weakened the effect of the reform and made it appear less dramatic (Verney 1957, 93-94). 16 The fact that Disraeli and Bismarck both pushed through wide reforms of suffrage only one year after the 1866 Riksdag Act has tempted Carlsson to ask what might have happened if the Swedish reform had been delayed by two years (Carlsson 1973, 331). Perhaps the reform would not have been as conservative. However, an introduction of universal suffrage can also be viewed as a method of conservation in which an emphasis is put on the social implications to citizens (see Rosanvallon 1994, 192-199). The reform of representation in 1866 has been discussed in Swedish history writing without any particular agitation. Some topics, such as De Geer’s intention and whether the reform was more conservative or liberal, have been interpreted differently by different scholars. Social changes and international constitutional patterns have been commonly noted, and some have emphasised the international political climate of the 1860s and link between the Swedish national liberals and the national liberal enthusiasm which occurred in other European countries. However, what is missing in the existing interpretations of the reform, is a closer and systematic analysis of the political language and rhetoric which was used during the heated debates on the reform. Ekman has correctly pointed out the role of agitating rhetoric on the pro-reform side in the autumn of 1865. However, he gives no analysis on the rhetorical figures that 14

Nilsson discovered that De Geer changed some class-based terms into more neutral expressions in a later version of the proposal. “Arbetaren” was changed into “den som icke har något annat kapital än sin fysiska arbetskraft”, and “de rika” into “oaktad en stor penninguppoffring”. (Nilsson 1969a, 253, footnote 5). 15 Verney concludes: “To call the Parliament Act a victory of the middle class or of liberalism is to give an impression of Swedish political development which is misleading. The age of liberalism in the political sense had not yet arrived, and the urban bourgeoisie upon which it depended was still small in numbers.” (Verney 1957, 92-93). 16 Accordingly, Premfors has emphasised the compromising character of the reform as an example of an important aspect of Swedish political culture (Premfors 2000, 127).

59 were used in the debate. The combination of “representation” and “nation” has been mentioned in some studies but not thoroughly analysed. The purpose of this study is to consciously and consistently analyse three dimensions of the debate: “representation”, “nation”, and “time”.



4.1 Historicising and rhetoricising the reform In order to analyse interpretations of the concept “national” in relation to the issue of political representation, the concepts “representation” and “nation” must be first understood as both historical and rhetorical. They were used in a rhetorical manner for partisan purposes, which was produced by referring to their historical meaning. It was highly important for political actors to be able to give ‘correct’ interpretations to the concepts. This study takes as its point of departure, the struggle over key political concepts during the debate over parliamentary reform and studies the history of concepts. 1 There are two aspects in my analysis which 1

As guidelines for such an analysis and as inspiring examples for my study, there are some approaches which have dealt with parliamentary reforms in a manner, which can be counted under the headings of rhetorical or conceptual historical analysis. Linda Colley’s Forging the Nation 1707-1837 (1992) shows that the languages of patriotism and “nation” were actively used during the campaign for the 1832 Reform Act in Britain (Colley 1992, 336). Pierre Rosanvallon, in turn, has shown that universal male suffrage in France in 1848 was executed in order to bring about social unity rather than popular political participation. The reform was a kind of sacrament of unity, and political conflicts and diversity were viewed as a threat to this social unity. (Rosanvallon 1994, 192-204). Willibald Steinmetz has in his Das Sagbare und das Machtbare. Zum Wandel politischer Handlungsspielräume. England 1780-1867 (1993) distinguished and analysed rhetorical figures, “unpersonal agents”, which were used in the debates on the English parliamentary reforms. In this way he has been able to construct “spaces of experience” and “horizons of expectation” of the reform in the 1780s, in the beginning of the 1830s, and in the 1860s respectively, and then to show how these temporal categories limited and opened possibilities for political action in respective reform situations. (Steinmetz 1993, 312).

62 can be analytically separated. On the one hand, my purpose is to highlight the rhetorical aspects of conceptual histories and conceptual changes. On the other, I will examine the historical aspects of the rhetorical situation. I believe that it is necessary to examine both aspects in a study of political language. A given debate is always both rhetorical and historical, since the concepts used in the debate have histories of their own. Instead of viewing concepts purely as definitions and thereby concretely definable, I take them as historical and contestable. By doing this, I can hope to skip explanations that are based on ‘over-historical’ ideas as well as on functional or structural reasons. The focus is placed on actual human agency in the historical situation, for concepts do change when they are used. In political action concepts gain different interpretations, they are ““Konzentrate vieler Bedeutungsinhalte” as stated by Reinhart Koselleck (Koselleck 1972, XXII). By focusing on the historical uses of concepts, I hope to be able to read political aspects and political contest into phenomena and trajectories that have otherwise seemed unproblematic or even uninteresting. Thus, human actors should not be reduced to reflections of different structures or other impersonal entities, like overhanging ideas or ideologies (e.g. Farr 1989, 32; Palonen 2000, 7; Stråth 1990, 2). Social and economic changes, structures and institutions are themselves results of political actions and not things which are beyond human agency. Certainly, there are structures that limit human agency, but it is a question of a dynamic relationship where action is partly limited by structures, while structures, at the same time, are reshaped and changed by action (Baker 1990, 6). 2 For example, speech is possible only in language, which in turn is restructured by speech. Furthermore, even structures, be they social or economic, are, for a researcher, linguistically mediated. Political actions happen mostly through the medium of language, and political practices are to a great extent constituted through language. Even a non-linguistic action or event must be translated into a linguistic form when a scholar tries to make sense of it. In regards to politics, it is characteristically linguistic: We can indeed kill Kings with swords or axes, but it is only with words that we can abolish monarchies. In this sense is the pen truly mightier than the sword, and to this extent too, linguistic reality and action cannot be seen as conceptually distinct from an independently existing political or social reality: political reality cannot be other than linguistically constituted. (Hampsher-Monk 1998, 48). 2 “But to assert that human identity and action are linguistically constituted is a statement regarding the conditions of human action, not a denial of the possibility of such action. Human agents find their being with language; they are, to that extent, constrained by it. Yet they are constantly working with it and on it, playing at its margins, exploiting its possibilities, and extending the play of its potential meanings, as they pursue their purposes and projects. Although this play of discursive possibility may not be infinite, in any given linguistic context, it is always open to individual and collective actors. By the same token, it is not necessarily controllable by such actors.” (Baker 1990, 6).

63 It is only in the realm of pure and naked force that the linguistic character looses its relevance. Nevertheless, even drastic and violent political changes have their linguistic dimensions.

4.2 On the conditions of histories of concepts across time In order to be able to focus on concepts which have altered in meaning over time, they must be studied longitudinally. The question then is: Is it possible to write about the histories of concepts across time or are we bound to write about specific historical events in specific contexts? If concepts are to be studied in their context of use, how can we know that we are dealing with the same concepts when the context has changed? It has been claimed by Quentin Skinner, a foremost scholars in the field of conceptual history, 3 that “there can be no histories of concept as such; there can only be histories of their uses in argument” (Skinner 1988f, 283). 4 This kind of demarcation seems to exclude the possibility of moving beyond contextual borders in historical analyses and seems to deny real possibilities for approaches such as those within the tradition of Begriffsgeschichte, a method pioneered by Reinhart Koselleck. Skinner’s main interest is the rhetorical situation in a given historical context. His main argument is that those writings that are usually regarded as ‘classics’ have played a role in contemporary political debates, and therefore they cannot be 3 Conceptual history is one example of a new orientation which falls under the label “linguistic turn” in human and social sciences. It may be worth noting that conceptual history is more like a perspective than a strict method, and that a line demarcating historical discourse analysis and rhetorical analysis is difficult, if not impossible, to draw. There is not just one way of doing research that is called conceptual history. For example, the German Begriffsgeschichte (e.g. Reinhart Koselleck) takes concepts as unit objects of study, whereas the so-called Cambridge school has focused on “linguistic conventions” and “ideologies” (Quentin Skinner) or “discourses” and “languages” (J. G. A. Pocock). Nevertheless, I would like to claim that we can trace a number of common features that make it possible to treat these ‘schools’ together under the title “conceptual history”. Such features are: understanding political language historically, avoiding anachronistic explanations, and reconstructing ‘real’ human agency in historical situations. Conceptual historians, as understood here, have been arguing against “eternal questions” in the history of ideas, i.e. against such understanding of history of ideas and history of philosophy where the same ‘school book’ questions can be asked from every great thinker, as if those thinkers had only discussed with each other and without any interest in contemporary debates. This means that a sophisticated creation of historical contexts is of great importance. 4 Skinner also writes, “we should study not the meanings of the words, but their use. For the given idea cannot ultimately be said in this sense to have any meaning that can take the form of a set of words which can then be excogitated and traced out over time. Rather the meaning of the idea must be its uses to refer in various ways” (Skinner 1988a, 55).

64 understood without understanding the contemporary questions, 5 and ways of thinking. One must first know the political and social context and the linguistic conventions that both limited and enabled those writers to write what they wrote. These conventions can contain, for instance, shared vocabularies, principles, assumptions, problems, and conceptual distinctions (see Tully 1988, 9). Consequently, we must try to capture the concepts of the period, or the event, in question (Skinner 1988f, 252). A dimension of such an approach, which is based on Wittgenstein’s view on words as deeds and on Austin’s theory of “speech acts”, states that it is not enough to know what a given author meant with certain concepts or expressions; we must also try to understand why s/he wrote as s/he did; we need to grasp her/his intention in writing as s/he did. 6 In other words: [T]o understand what any given writer may have been doing in using some particular concept or argument, we need first of all to grasp the nature and range of things that could recognizably have been done by using that particular concept, in the treatment of that particular theme, at that particular time. (Skinner 1988b, 77).

Skinner takes both purely contextual and textual approaches as too one-sided. Textualists are in a danger of falling into anachronisms, while contextualists, on the other hand, are under a threat of explaining texts from the context. However, both still need a sound knowledge of the context in order to be able to understand the linguistic conventions. The problem is: how can this context be found? In his empirical studies, Skinner solved this problem by examining a great amount of minor and anonymous texts, and thereby creating a picture of the debates and questions of the period. 7 It is necessary to understand the context of these debates since we can assume that the author of the text in question wanted to be understood by his contemporaries (Skinner 1996b, 148). Yet, a context is not just something we find ‘out there’. It has to be created. As noted, Skinner has done it with the help of other texts. In this sense his contextualism is very textualistic in


Skinner is here indebted to R. G. Collingwood (see Collingwood 1939, 39). Skinner makes a distinction between the meaning of a speech act, or text, (locution) and the meaning of producing this speech act (illocution). The third dimension of a speech act is its effect (perlocution), but Skinner is less interested in this. His main interest is in the illocutionary force of an utterance; he is interested in what an author was doing in writing his/her text, i.e. what his/her intention was. 7 “By contrast, I have tried not to concentrate so exclusively on the leading theorists, and have focused instead on the more general social and intellectual matrix out of which their works arose. […] For it is evident that the nature and limits of the normative vocabulary available at any given time will also help to determine the ways in which particular questions come to be singled out and discussed. I have tried to write a history centred less on the classic texts and more on the history of ideologies, my aim being to construct a general framework within which the writings of the more prominent theorists can then be situated.” (Skinner 1978, x-xi). 6

65 character. Even a social context is created as a part of this linguistic enterprise (Skinner 1988a, 64). 8 It has been argued that Skinner’s way of writing history only gives us histories of separate contexts following each other, like individual pearls in a string of pearls (Liedman 1987). However, Skinner has not limited himself only to ‘strictly’ contextual studies. 9 He has written on the histories of the modern concept of state and on the concept of liberty and thus reconstructed traditions hundreds of years long (Skinner 1989; Skinner 1998; cf. Skinner 1999). As I understand it, there is a dimension of conceptual history in Skinner’s approach, otherwise he could not construct his linguistic conventions. Linguistic conventions do have their histories even if speech acts do not. In fact, he has commented on his relationship to conceptual history as practised by Koselleck and stated that his approach can be taken as an aspect of Begriffsgeschichte. Nevertheless, while conceptual history has been interested in the long durée of conceptual changes, Skinner is more specifically interested in how a conceptual change takes place. (Skinner 1999, 71-72). When he writes about conceptual change he operates more or less on a micro-level. Conceptual history is also useful when we are constructing “languages”, as J. G. A. Pocock has done. By “languages” he means paradigmatic linguistic structures, idioms, rhetoric, vocabularies, and preconditions (Pocock 1987a, 21). These “languages” limit and enable historical actors (e.g. Pocock 1973, 25).10 Despite Pocock’s own preferences, I claim that in order to avoid a condition of closed and/or monolithic “languages” one ought to start from the concepts and end with the “languages”, not the other way round. There is an important question to be asked. How do we judge a concept as being the same, although with changed meanings, over several centuries? In order to be able to trace long-term conceptual changes, we have to take note of the concept whenever it comes up. This would be an easy task if the concept is a word. Unfortunately, this seems not always to be the case. According to Skinner, it is not enough to know what words a historical actor uses, we must also know 8

We might say that Skinner’s context is the context of a writer who sits in his/her room and reads and writes: a macro-intellectual and micro-institutional context. I would, however, like to claim that this is not necessarily true. It is possible to see that Skinner's linguistic conventions contain structural and institutional contents from the past (even if Skinner himself does not always pay that much attention to them). Actually, he says that the relevant context does not necessarily need to be only the contemporary context, but another historical period or historical tradition as well (Skinner 1988f, 275). 9 Skinner writes: ”Nevertheless, I agree that I misstated my point. My objection is not so much to those who treat texts as self-sufficient objects of inquiry and understanding. My objection is rather to those who assume that the business of understanding a text is simply a matter of recovering, by whatever means, the meaning of the txts itself. This is the assumption – at least as widespread as it was when I first wrote – that I still wish to reject in the name of the need to recover, at the same time, what the author of the text may have meant by it.” (Skinner 1988f, 282). 10 “The historian’s first problem, then, is to identify the ‘language’ or ‘vocabulary’ with and within which the author operated, and to show how it functioned paradigmatically to prescribe what he might say and how he might say it.” (Pocock 1973, 25).

66 what concepts s/he possesses (Skinner 1988e, 120). 11 Koselleck, too, has made a distinction between concepts and words. He has stated that a word can become unambiguous whereas a concept cannot (Koselleck 1972, XXII). If a word and a concept are not connected with each other, then how can we then decide whether changes in an expression constitutes a change in the meaning of the particular concept or a replacement of the concept altogether? We should approach this pragmatically. Skinner appears to take a practical stance when he states that there is a connection between words and concepts, for “the surest sign that a group or society has entered into the self-conscious possession of a new concept is that a corresponding vocabulary will be developed, a vocabulary which can then be used to pick out and discuss the concept with consistency.” (Skinner 1988e, 120). There is a systematic relationship between words and concepts (ibid. 121). 12 Koselleck, in turn, maintains that “[e]ach concept is associated with a word, but not every word is a social and political concept. Social and political concepts possess a substantial claim to generality and always have many meanings — in historical science, occasionally in modalities other than words.” (Koselleck 1985, 83). As I see it, there are two preconditions that have made it possible for Skinner to move across contextual borders and to overcome strictly intentional micro level cases. These preconditions are linked to each other. In his study of the concept of state he has a “starting definition” or a formulation of the problem that demarcates the vocabulary that the concept is linked with. To quote Skinner: I now turn to consider the process by which the above usages […] eventually gave rise to recognizably modern discussions of the concept of state. I shall argue that, if we wish to trace both the acquisition of this concept and at the same time its expression by means of such terms as status, stato or state, [.] (Skinner 1989, 95-96, emphasises mine).

Koselleck is especially interested in studies that overstep several historical contexts. However, he is also interested in the use of concepts in their specific contexts (e.g. Koselleck 1996, 62). His approach is based on the view on different layers of time. He makes an analytical distinction between historical events and 11

The relationship between words and concepts is complicated: “[I]t cannot be a necessary condition of my possessing a concept that I need to understand the correct application of a corresponding term. […] Moreover, it cannot be a sufficient condition of my possessing a concept that I understand the correct application of a corresponding term. There is still the possibility (explored by Wittgenstein as well as Kant) that I may believe myself to be in possession of a concept when this belief is in fact mistaken.” (Skinner 1988e, 120). In my view, this raises some doubts and questions. If we say that one can be mistaken in the possession of a concept, how can we then decide when one has been mistaken and when one has only used a concept in a different meaning? What is the difference between a misuse of a concept and a conceptual change? 12 “[T]here is nevertheless a systematic relationship between words and concepts to be explored. The possession of a concept will at least standardly be signalled by the employment of a corresponding term. As long as we bear in mind that ‘standardly’ means neither necessarily nor sufficiently, I think we may legitimately proceed.” (Skinner 1988e, 121).

67 language and maintains that history and language have different rhythms. For Koselleck, long-term meanings are not lost with every change of their context of application. (Koselleck 1996, 62-67; Koselleck 1989, 649). 13 Conceptual history is possible, because “the concept […] has various time layers, its meanings have different durées” (Koselleck 1994, 10). But this does not mean that Skinner’s critique against histories of a concept would discredit Koselleck’s approach (cf. Pocock 1996). According to Koselleck, every speech act concepts occur only once (Koselleck 1996, 62). 14 But conceptual history does not end here. In every new situation we are bound to also use the old meanings of the concepts; therefore, the concepts must be recycled: Every author must confront the relationship between the former meanings of a concept and the author’s own intended purposes. […] No author can create something new without reaching back to the established corpus of the language, to those linguistic resources created diachronically in the near or more remote past and shared by all speakers and listeners. Understanding or being understood presupposes such prior knowledge of how the language has been used. Every word and every concept thus has a diachronic thrust against which anyone seeking to add a new meaning must work. (Koselleck 1996, 63).

Concepts can be recycled because they contain different layers of time. However, there are events where the old givens of semantics are not enough (Koselleck 1989, 660). During times of political crisis and revolutions, abrupt changes generate conceptual changes, innovations, neologisms, and maybe even new horizons for political action. Koselleck is more explicit than Skinner in regards to the conditions of conceptual history. He mentions contemporary definitions (Koselleck 1983, 13-14) 15 and the reception of concepts (Koselleck 1994, 8). This solution is quite similar to Skinner’s approach. Conceptual history is possible when contemporary definitions (or problem formulations) are used in order to ‘mark’ the research problem, which


“Conceptual change is generally slower and more gradual than the pace of political event. That is to say that changes in the language of politics do not necessarily correspond to what occurs in politics. The history of language, the history of society, and the history of politics do not change at the same rate of speed. […] Because they can be applied again and again, basic concepts accumulate long-term meanings that are not lost with every change in regime or social situation. This quality of basic concepts, the fact that they are repeatedly applied to different political and social circumstances, testifies to their relatively long-lasting structures.” (Koselleck 1996, 66-67). 14 “No wonder that Quentin Skinner […] questions the very possibility of writing a history of concepts. Such a rigorous historicism views all concepts as speech acts within a context that cannot be replicated. As such, concepts occur only once; they are not substances, quasi-ideas capable of leading a diachronic life of their own. […] Concepts can become outdated because the context within they were constituted no longer exist. Thus, although concepts age, they have no autonomous history of their own.” (Koselleck 1996, 62). 15 “Meine These lautet, dass auch eine stringente, gerade eine stringente Begriffsgeschichte nicht ohne gegenwartsbezogene Definition auskommt.” (Koselleck 1983, 13).

68 has its own history and vocabulary in its reception (Palonen 1997, 51-52). 16 In a nutshell, to be able to write conceptual history, we need a problem that demarcates the concept we are interested in. This problem has its ‘origins’ and its reception in historical time, as well as its ‘original’ vocabulary or ‘word family’. We need a vocabulary in order to begin an investigation. If the vocabulary changes then there is a potential for conceptual changes.

4.3 Rhetorical aspect of conceptual change In order to be able to write about conceptual histories and trace conceptual changes, concepts are to be studied in their rhetorical use. Thus, there is always a rhetorical analysis involved in an analysis of conceptual history. Koselleck has paid less attention to this dimension than Skinner, yet he is well aware of the importance of a synchronic analysis in conceptual history. The concept under examination must be placed within and put in relation to its semantic field. There are two procedures of investigation which can be applied both synchronically and diachronically: “semasiological” and “onomasiological” analysis. The former means studying all different meanings of a ‘concept-word’, the latter means studying all synonyms and names of a ‘concept-thing’ (Koselleck 1972, XXI-XXII; Koselleck 1985, 86). 17 These procedures can be completed with analyses of “asymmetric counter concepts”. In such cases, concept pairs which are unequal, in a manner that the other part of the pair is a negation, are studied (Koselleck 1985, 163). In this way, it is possible to create certain semantic groups, which lead to the construction of “languages”. Concepts can be understood as “pivots around which all arguments turn” (Koselleck 1996, 65). They do not, however, surf alone in historical time but are related to other concepts. A researcher of conceptual history has to decide when 16 Koselleck gives us an example: “[A]s soon as a word is used with a specific meaning and with reference to a specific reality, it is unique. Cicero’s res publica, for instance, refers to Roman society and the meaning of this concept is intimately linked to the Roman conception of man. Aristotle’s koinonia politike, to give another example, can only be understood in relation to the political form of organisation of his time, the Greek polis. Everything Aristotle says in his Politics is uniquely applicable to the polis. This can not change over time. It is simply impossible to say that Aristotle’s concept of koinonia politike itself changes. What happens, strictly speaking, is that subsequent readers of Aristotle give the concept a different meaning and application. Aristotle’s concept has no history, its reception does.” (Koselleck 1994, 8). 17 For example, Geschichtliche Grundbegriffe is more like a semasiological product in which an onomasiological dimension has been a complementary one. Skinner’s studies of the concept of state, in turn, can be understood as a kind of combination of semasiology and onomasiology. He has studied different meanings of terms status and lo stato, on the one hand, and then analysed different synonyms of “state”, such as civitas, res publica, and commonwealth, on the other.

69 the concepts are brought together and “languages” constructed. The parliamentary reform, as a potential period of political and conceptual transformation, is an explanatory case in this respect. Skinner has distinguished three criteria for conceptual change. A conceptual change occurs, firstly, when the range of criteria of application changes; secondly, when the range of reference changes; thirdly, when the range of attitudes that the concept expresses changes (Skinner 1988e, 121-122). As James Farr has put it: “We find conceptual change whenever we find changes in […] its criteria of application, its range of reference, or its attitudinal expressiveness.” (Farr 1989, 31). Related to potential conceptual changes, Skinner has placed emphasis on “moves in argument” and “points”. It should be understood that a historical political actor, or an author, is taking part in a conversation where his/her utterances can be taken as rhetorical “moves” (Skinner 1996b, 148). 18 The “point” is in question when a speech act crosses the common conventions (Skinner 1988d, 106). 19 Especially in the case of national and patriotic rhetoric as well as in the rhetoric of “citizen” and “representation”, it is important to examine the techniques of inclusion and exclusion, in other words, how “we” and “others” are constructed. These techniques can be studied, for instance, by analysing “asymmetric counter concepts”, rhetorical “identifications” and “divisions” (Burke 1950, 19-46), as well as “associative” and “dissociative” rhetoric. In an “associative” rhetoric, the purpose is to bring together things which do not necessarily belong together; in a “dissociative” rhetoric, the purpose is to separate things which commonly are understood as belonging together (Perelman 1996, 5774, 93-119; see also Summa 1996, 71). According to Burke, “identification” and its counterpart, “division”, are elementary to rhetoric. Rhetoric is linked with conflictual situations, since it deals with the possibilities of classification into partisan aspects, “it considers the ways in which individuals are at odds with one another, or become identified with groups more or less at odds with one another” (Burke 1950, 22). Consequently, “identification” implies its counterpart: “division” (Burke 1950, 23). By identifications a feature, a thing or a person is linked with a group or a greater whole. A speaker persuades the audience to identify itself with the speaker’s interests (Burke 1950, 46; see also Summa 1996, 56-60). It can then be concluded that rhetorical identification and divisions are loaded with political consequences (Summa 1996, 59). As Burke states, “since identification implies 18

“[T]here is a sense in which we may need to understand why a certain proposition has been put forward if we wish to understand the proposition itself. We may need to see it not just as a proposition but as a move in argument. To understand it, we may need to grasp why it seemed appropriate to make just that move, and hence to issue just that utterance.” (Skinner 1996b, 148) 19 True, Skinner’s approach has been actively discussed due to his focus on the “intentions” of historical actors. I will not go into the discussion. It should, however, be noted that, according to Skinner, we are not expected to find only one correct intention. Instead we are expected to offer a hypothesis and to exclude false and ahistorical explanations (Skinner 1996b, 151-152).

70 division, we [find] rhetoric involving us in matters of socialisation and faction” (Burke 1950, 45). It is possible to view the debate on political reform as a case for an “innovating ideologist” and an “apologist”. According to Skinner, the task of “innovating ideologist” is to use linguistic conventions rhetorically in a manner that even a problematic or radical action can be made to seem acceptable: The task of the innovating ideologist is a hard but obvious one. His concern, by definition, is to legitimate a new range of social actions which, in terms of existing ways of applying the moral vocabulary prevailing in his society, are correctly regarded as in some way untoward or illegitimate. His aim must therefore be to show that a number of existing and favourable evaluative-descriptive terms can somehow be applied to his apparently untoward actions. If he can somehow perform this trick, he can thereby hope to argue that the condemnatory descriptions which are otherwise liable to be applied to his actions can in consequence be discounted. (Skinner 1988d, 112; see also Skinner 1978, xii).

We are here dealing with an important topic in the praxis of a conceptual historian. It is an issue of a contest over meanings of concepts and, consequently, of potential conceptual changes. For example, adopting the concept of “patriotism” has often been an effective tool when historical actors have tried to legitimise radical political goals. Because an “innovating ideologist” is supposed to use commonly accepted evaluative concepts, this means that such a strategy seems moderate. This is why Skinner has stated that “every revolutionary is […] obliged to march backwards into battle” (Skinner 1988d, 112). However, in a later article Skinner has radicalised his rhetorical view and stated that there is no standard meaning in evaluative terms: [I] have found myself adopting their [the ancient theorists of eloquence] assumption that it makes little sense to speak of evaluative terms as having accepted denotations that can either be followed or, with varying degrees of disingenuousness, effectively manipulated. Rather, as the ancient rhetoricians put it, there will always be a sufficient degree of ‘neighbourliness’ between the forms of behaviour described by contrasting evaluative terms for those terms themselves to be susceptible of being applied in a variety of conflicting ways. It now seems to me, in short, that all attempts to legislate about the ‘correct’ use of normative vocabularies must be regarded as equally ideological in character. (Skinner 1999, 67).

In my mind, this radicalisation does not water down the task of “an innovating ideologist”, rather it makes it more open. In the minds of contemporary actors, there always are more correct and more illegitimate uses of concepts. This does not deny the point that ‘correct’ uses of concepts are ideological in character, yet some uses are more easily acceptable for contemporaries than others. Nevertheless, an “innovating ideologist” needs to be skilful in her/his rhetoric. Together with, and as a counterpart of, an analytical figure of an “innovating ideologist” there is an “apologist”. While an “innovating ideologist” aims to change politics by applying commonly positively evaluated terms in a new way in

71 order to bring about a change in the existing state of affairs, an “apologist” defends the existing system by describing the existing political system in favourably evaluative terms. In such cases, the purpose is to answer critics by applying a rival evaluative description to the same political system. Two conditions must be fulfilled. Firstly, it must be plausible to apply the rival evaluative description; secondly, the description must be made with such commending terms that the unfavourable evaluations can be defeated or overridden. The commendatory force of the term used must also be strong enough. (Skinner 1973, 302-303).

4.4 Historical aspects of a rhetorical situation In my study of the Swedish debate on parliamentary reform in the 1860s, I conduct a rhetorical analysis of a given historical situation. However, conceptual histories have had an important role in my study; in every rhetorical situation the language that was used has had its own histories. As explained earlier, concepts were to be recycled in order to make the argument understandable to other participants of the debate. This means that in practice certain interpretations of the concepts were picked up from history. How consciously and strategically this happened is a matter for closer analysis. This means that the synchronic analysis must be complemented with a diachronic analysis, i.e. with an analysis that scrutinises the concepts diachronically through time (see Koselleck 1972, XXI). More specifically, I will analyse the struggle over parliamentary reform with the help of the figures of “innovating ideologist” and “apologist” since they argue both in favour and against the reform proposal by rhetorically redescribing the political situation. The tasks of both an “innovating ideologist” and an “apologist” are to redescribe the situation and through this redescription, re-evaluate the action that was proposed (Skinner 1996a, 145). 20 My purpose is to study how the key concepts, “representation” and “nation” were given new meanings and assessments of significance, as well as new evaluations. There are two ways of examining this redescription. One is to claim that the concept is misleadingly defined. The other is to claim that the concept is correctly defined but that the state of affairs, or the action in question, does not have the quality or character that the term alleges (Skinner 1996a, 139-143). Thus, the contestedness of a concept can refer either to its meaning or its applicability. It is 20

Skinner writes about description and re-evaluation: “We simply replace whatever descriptions our opponents may have offered with a different set of terms that serve to describe the action with no less plausibility, but place it at the same time in a different moral light. We seek to persuade our hearers to accept our redescription, and hence to adopt a new emotional attitude towards the action involved – either one of increased sympathy or acquired moral outrage.” (Skinner 1996a, 145).

72 possible to assume that, for example, the concept of “patriotism” is evaluated and understood in a consensual manner, but there is a disagreement on its application. In other words, the question is not necessarily about “patriotism” but instead about who is allowed to speak with “patriotism”. It is possible to analyse counter concepts not only as opposites to the studied key concepts but also as the rhetorical means by which the argument is turned in favour of the speaker. This is achieved by demonstrating that there always are two sides to any question. The rhetorical technique I refer to is part of classical and Renaissance humanism as paradiastole which was a crucial aspect of ars rhetorica. Aristotle and his admirers among the Roman rhetoricians as well as Machiavelli in the Italian Renaissance claimed that every good quality has its neighbouring vice (Skinner 1996a, 154-157, 170). A paradiastolic redescription may touch upon the naming, meaning, and significance of the concepts in order to either devalue virtues or re-evaluate vices (Palonen 1999, 48). 21 The point is to show that it is always possible to “construct a plausible argument in utramque partem, on either side of the case” (Skinner 1996a, 9). 22 In summary, my purpose is to analyse how the central political actors redescribed the political situation and thus re-evaluated the action that was proposed, in this case the 1866 parliamentary reform. Given the centrality of the “nation” and “national” in the rhetoric, both an “apologist” and an “innovating ideologist” tried to describe the reform as corresponding to the national tradition of the country.

21 It should be pointed out here that this is not to say that the participants of the Swedish debate in the 1860s would have used the rhetorical technique consciously as if they were successors of the tradition of classical humanism, only that it is possible to point out rhetorical strategies which have been common to classical and Renaissance analysts of rhetoric. 22 “With these contentions about the neighbourly relations between virtue and vice, the writers we are considering arrive at their explanation of why it will always be possible to employ the figure of paradiastole to arouse the deepest emotions of an audience. It is precisely because of these associations and affinities, they claim, that a clever orator can always hope to challenge the proffered description of an action or state of affairs with some show of plausibility. […] Conversely, he can always hope to denigrate or depreciate a good action by imposing upon it the name of some bordering vice.” (Skinner 1996a, 156).





What is a nation? A body of associates living under common laws and represented by the same legislative assembly, etc. (Sieyès [1789] 1963, 58).

This chapter discusses the history of the concept of “representation” and its relationship to the concept of “nation”. The combination of the concepts is examined in the French Revolution, in particular. The revolution is thus taken as a thematic point of departure in this chapter. Firstly, I shall present a short overview of the history of the concept of “representation” before the Revolution. My approach is selective in character as the attempt is to give a background to the revolutionary understanding of “representation” rather than to write an extensive history of the concept. Secondly, I shall discuss in greater detail the combination of “representation” and “nation” in the French Revolution. Thirdly, I shall present some remarks on the languages of “nation” and “patriotism”, which were closely linked with the Revolution. Having focused on British and French cases, I shall then turn to German political culture and discuss the issue of political representation in the German states, especially in Prussia. Here, the French experiences serve as a background, as they generally did in a European context. Prussia is also an example of the political system which was based on estates in the nineteenth century. This chapter concludes with three detailed studies on the issue of “representation” and its relationship to “nation”. The purpose is to give a deeper, yet selective, picture of “liberal” nineteenth-century understanding of the problem of political representation. I have chosen three prominent “liberals” who reflected upon the consequences of the French revolution and modern political representation, namely: Benjamin Constant, Alexis de Tocqueville, and John Stuart Mill.


5.1 On the history of the concept of ”representation” before the French Revolution The political concept of representation is a modern one. The ancient Greeks had no corresponding word, although they elected some officials and sometimes ambassadors. The Romans had the word repraesentare, from which the modern ”representation” derives, but they used it to mean the literal bringing into presence of something previously absent, or the embodiment of an abstraction in an object. They did not apply it to human beings acting for others, or to their political institutions. Such uses began to emerge in Latin in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. In English it happened even later, as persons sent to participate in church councils or in the English Parliament came gradually to be thought of as representatives. (Pitkin 1967, 2-3; Podlech 1984, 509-510). Political representation was at the beginning a duty rather than a right or a privilege. In England, the calling of knights and burgesses to meet with the King’s council began as a matter of royal convenience and need. Far from being a privilege or right, attendance at Parliament was a chore and a duty, reluctantly performed. Only successively did parliamentary representation begin to be used as a device for furthering local interests, as a control over the power of the King. (Pitkin 1967, 3). 1 From the fourteenth to the seventeenth century, there was a gradual development of unified action by the knights and burgesses in Parliament, and they came to be called ”members” of Parliament. Together with these developments there was an increasing awareness of the members being a single body. Moreover, their joint action was often in opposition to the King. This development culminated in the period of the Civil War and Commonwealth, when there was only Parliament to govern the nation. 2 Once the Parliament was regarded as the representative body of the whole Kingdom, the application to individual members followed easily. In the second quarter of the seventeenth century, ”represent” and the related words become openly political terms. (Pitkin 1967, 244-249). It was an ordinary way to think that the whole nation was embodied in its ruler. Then, the King was not merely the head of the national body, nor the owner of the entire realm, but he was the nation. This symbolic position was ascribed to the King-in-Parliament jointly, as a single body. Despite the fact that it was commonly thought that each representative was a representative of his local constituency, there developed an idea that each member of Parliament acts for the entire nation. Actually, the claim that the members of Parliament represented all 1 During the reign of Edward I, i.e. between 1272 – 1307, deciding over taxes became possible only when Parliament was involved. The division between upper and lower chamber was confirmed by 1376 when the House of Commons began to meet in a place of its own. However, the venue proved to be so intimate that the representatives had to sit face to face in order to be in the room. It has been speculated whether this architectural coincidence was partly the reason behind the two-party system of England. (see Paastela 1984, 77). 2 The noun ”representative” made its first appearance in English in the 1640s. The earliest application of the noun ”representative” to a member of Parliament occurred in 1651. It could mean both the persons in the assembly and the Parliament as a whole. (Pitkin 1967, 248-249).

77 the people had long been used as a weapon to challenge the King. In the Civil War it was a justification for overthrowing him. On the other hand, the King sought to keep the members of Parliament in their place by arguing that each spoke only for his own separate community, so that they did not collectively represent the realm. (Pitkin 1967, 245-247, 252; cf. Widell 1939, 8). It should be noted that the victory of Parliament over the monarchy in England should not be taken as inevitable. Helmut Koeningsberger, for example, has warned against such Whig interpretation on the development of the institution of political representation. 3 He rejects any notion that the English Parliament, and especially the House of Commons, deliberately, systematically and over a long period of time opposed the King in order to strengthen its own power and diminish the authority of the monarchy. Instead, Parliament was an organ of royal government, dependent for its very existence on the King’s summons. Thus, the main task of Parliament was to grant the crown money and to pass the legislation proposed by the government. (Koeningsberger 1989, 61-63). 4 There had existed a tradition of representation in Europe that was based on a consent between corporate members (limbs) and the sovereign within which the idea of the divine origin of sovereignty was in principle accepted, but the worldly legitimacy of the sovereignty was viewed as deriving from below. This late medieval idea explained the royal sovereignty as an outcome of the consent of the corporations. The idea was that an emperor was elected by the Great Electors. There were then two main possibilities open for the legitimacy of the sovereignty. On the one hand, it could be based on God’s representative on the divine origin or, on the other hand, it could be based on the idea of a contract of the people – in which case we are about to near Hobbes’ theory of the representative sovereignty. (Podlech 1984, 510-516). 5 3

In accordance with my critique of linear and inevitable stories of democratisation, Koeningsberger criticises Whig interpretations on early modern Europe: ”The links which Whig, Marxist and sociologically oriented historians established with the historiography of revolutions were not fortuitous. All of them took it for granted that dysfunction in the social and political structure of early modern society was caused primarily by movements from below against the actual ruling elite. In fact such models, especially when they were taken over or adopted from those of the social scientists, were based on the experience of modern revolutions, from the French Revolution to the Chinese and Cuban. They simply do not fit early modern Europe very well.” (Koeningsberger 1989, 62). 4 Another Whig interpretation of early modern history has been the view that the theory of natural freedom of men was a new idea which was invented against patriarchal and absolutist view on the sovereignty’s divine legitimacy. On the contrary, the idea of natural freedom of men was known and acknowledged already in the Middle Ages, whereas the patriarchal idea of absolutism was spreading out in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in Europe. (Saastamoinen 1997, 61-62). There is, of course, a whole tradition of Renaissance republican and neo-roman political thought, which preceded contract theories (e.g. Skinner 1998). As has lately been shown by Quentin Skinner, Hobbes was leaning on classical and Renaissance humanist rhetorical strategies in his effort to deny the relevance of the same humanist tradition (see Skinner 1996a). 5 The Neo-Scholastic theorists, the Protestant Monarchomachs, and the British parliamentary publicists around the Civil War actually shared the idea that ”the people” existed before the creation of state. The relationship between the people and its rulers was a reciprocal, contract-like relationship. The question that follows then is, what was the original contract like? Could the people change the existing mode of government at will, or was it beyond their authority? The defenders of absolutism, like Suarez, Grotius, and Bodin, argued

78 Pitkin has argued that we can trace back in Hobbes the first examination of the modern idea of representation in political theory (Pitkin 1967, 4). In Leviathan, Hobbes introduced the principle according to which the multitude of men can be made one; transformation of the many into the one through the authorisation of a ”sovereign representative”. In the Chapter XVI in Leviathan Hobbes states: A Multitude of men, are made One Person, when they are by one man, or one Person, Represented; so that it be done with the consent of every one of that Multitude in particular. For it is the Unity of the of the Representer, not the Unity of the Represented, that maketh the Person One. And it is the Representer that bearet the Person, and but one Person: And Unity, cannot otherwise be understood in Multitude. (Hobbes 1991, 114).

A representative is someone (something) given authority to act by someone else, who is then bound by the representative’s action as if it has been his own (Pitkin 1989, 141). The authorisation did not come from the God but from the people, from the represented (Podlech 1984, 515). 6 It is important to note that Hobbes did not describe the represented as unitary one, only the representative must be unitary (Wokler 1998, 48; Lagerspetz 1997, 122). 7 As is known, Locke revisited the theory on representation in his The Second Treatise of Government by giving the represented the right to resist the sovereign and by binding the sovereign to the law (Locke 1988, 368). Representation did not mean a delegation of power but, instead, a trustee. Both the Executive and the Legislative used the power as trustees of the people (see Saastamoinen 1997, 70). Even if Hobbes allowed for the possibility that the representative person might be a collective body rather than an individual, his theory was particularly suitable for an absolute monarchy under the ancien régime. The monarch personified the unity, and the King represented the whole, “not in the sense that he is authorised by the body of the nation to act on its behalf, but precisely because the nation exists as a body only in the individual person of the monarch, which constitutes the source and principle of its unity” (Baker 1990, 225-226). In France, the Estates General did not represent the nation as a separate entity apart from the King but as a multiplicity of orders and Estates made one only by and in the royal presence. Communities and Estates represented their own particular interests, and that the nature of this contract was unconditional, so that the people did not have the ultimate power. Hobbes, too, accepted the idea of an unconditional contract. For him, the people can act only through its representatives, and the representative of the people is the sovereign, which is established in the original contract. (see Lagerspetz 1997, 119-121). 6 Hobbes writes in Chapter XVIII as follows: ”A Common-wealth is said to be Instituted, when a Multitude of men do Agree, and Covenant, every one, with every one, that to whatsoever Man, or Assembly of Men, shall be given by the major part, the Right to Present the Person of them all, (that is to say, to be their Representative;) every one, as well he that Voted for it, as he that Voted against it, shall Authorise all the Actions and Judgements, of that Man, or Assembly of men, in the same manner, as if they were his own, to the end, to live peaceably amongst themselves, and be protected against other men.” (Hobbes 1991, 121). 7 Hobbes’ sovereign representative could not, in principle, just do what ever he/it pleased, for Hobbes constantly implied that the sovereign will do what representatives are expected to do. However, this expectation cannot be invoked to criticise or resist the sovereign for not representing his subjects as he should. (Pitkin 1989, 141; Pitkin 1967, 33).

79 the mandat impératif bound the deputies to the communities they represent. The deputies were elected not to legislate for the nation as a whole, but to speak for the particular interests of the communities and corporate bodies. On the other hand, the mandat impératif also protected communities and corporate bodies from royal demands. In a nutshell, representation from above, deputation from below was the idea of the ancien régime representation. (Baker 1990, 225-227). 8 While the Estates General were not convoked, the parlement of Paris held the argument that as the highest judicial court of France it represented the King to the nation, and the other way round, that it represented the nation to the King. During the eighteenth century, the emphasis of this dual representation shifted in favour of the latter; i.e. that the parlement represented the nation to the King. Thus, the rhetoric of “the nation” together with the question of political representation was already used during the ancien régime. ”The nation” was becoming something that was separate from the monarch, and the issue was no longer whether the nation was to be represented, but how. (Baker 1990, 228-233; see also Podlech 1984, 521-522). The concept of “nation” became, together with concepts like ”law” and ”constitution”, ’a struggle concept’ against despotism in France. (Schönemann 1992, 321; Fehrenbach 1986, 86). The new concept of “the nation” often was not only anti-monarchical but also anti-aristocratic. Thus, the rhetoric of “the nation” was used already before the French Revolution in the context of political representation in the confrontations between the King and privileged Estates, which were organised in a parliament and which often called themselves ”the nation”. The French parliament was understood as the champion of the nation vis à vis the King. This opposite use of ”the nation” was associated with the privileged Estates. (Dann 1988, 7-8; Fehrenbach 1986, 83- 85, 90-91). 9 The most famous critic against the ancient régime theory of representation is, no doubt, Rousseau. In Du contrat social (1762), book III, chapter 15, he gives us a rigid rejection of a representative political system with a famous example of the English parliamentary elections: Sovereignty cannot be represented, for the same reason that it cannot be alienated; its essence is the general will, and will cannot be represented – either it is the general will or it is something else; there is no intermediate possibility. Thus the people’s deputies are not, and could not be, its representatives; they are merely its agents; and they cannot decide anything finally. Any law which the people has not ratified in person is void; it is not the law at all. The English people believes itself to be free; it is gravely mistaken; it is free only during the election of Members of Parliament; as soon as the Members are elected, the people is enslaved; it is nothing. In the brief moments of its freedom, the English people makes such a 8

In France, the development of the absolute state created an increasing paradox in practising this kind of idea of representation. While the absolute state transformed into a more integrated political entity, the principle of unity became less bound to the person of the king than to the more unified political nation. Simultaneously, new claims to represent the nation raised because the king of France refused to call the Estates General. (Baker 1990, 227-228). In fact, the Estates General had not met since 1614 (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 3). 9 It should be noted that France was by no means a united national whole in the modern meaning of a nation-state. It was rather divided between several provinces with different characteristics and languages. The monarch, Louis XVI, was still the most important source of common identity of the Frenchmen. (Söderhjelm 1927, 12-13).

80 use of that freedom that it deserves to lose it. (Rousseau 1968, 141). 10

The sovereign can act only when the people is assembled either in the extraordinary assemblies or in the fixed and periodic assemblies. The people assembled is something that crystallises the very concept of political citizen. Subject and sovereign are brought together, and representation is not needed. (Rousseau 1968, 136-139). The reasons why the representative system was so common was the lack of patriotism and the vastness of states. It was a republican view set against modern politics. Rousseau’s rejection of representation is a part of his rejection of mediators in general. He did not even welcome associations between the sovereignty and the people. (Rousseau 1968, 73-74, 141). 11 He, nevertheless, accepted the practice of representation in regards to executive power, for ”power may be delegated, but the will cannot be” (ibid. 69). Government is based on law, not on contract, and thus its members are not the people’s masters but its officers. Government is subordinated to the sovereign, but all in all there is a question of a balance between the three parts in his triangle, i.e. between the sovereign, the government, and the people. (Rousseau 1968, 103, 146). Rousseau thought, like Hobbes earlier, that the multiplicity of many had to be transformed into one. However, he did not conclude that this one was to be a monarch, but instead a collective body of citizens. The body of the free people could choose deputies – or commissaires – but their actions could never become law without direct popular ratification. The fact that Rousseau accepted the elected legislature in the case of a large state (Considérations sur le gouvernement de Pologne) does not change his position because he remained faithful to the distinction between representatives and deputies. This distinction is something the English had neglected to maintain, and that is why they had lost their freedom, Rousseau argued. The deputies, Rousseau continued, are bound with the mandat imperatif, as a matter of fact so strictly that any formal popular ratification of laws was not necessary. Thus, Rousseau seemed either to exclude the possibility of representation altogether or to admit it only in the sense of delegates who are restricted under the constraints of the binding mandate. There is no room for deliberation within a representative assembly. Consequently, Rousseau’s view on representatives and deputies created difficulties for the revolutionaries of the 1789 when they tried to combine national unity with the practice of representation. It 10

Rousseau’s attitude towards representation derives from his definition that sovereignty is inalienable: “My argument, then, is that sovereignty, being nothing other than the exercise of the general will, can never be alienated; and that the sovereign, which is simply a collective being, cannot be represented by anyone but itself - power may be delegated, but the will cannot be.” (Rousseau 1968, 69). 11 Before Rousseau, Montesquieu had already touched upon the issue of modern versus ancient politics, as is well known. Montesquieu maintains in his De l’esprit des lois (1748) that in a free state every man should be governed by himself, but as this is impossible in large states, the people must have their representatives. “The great advantage”, writes Montesquieu, “of representatives is that they are able to discuss public business. The people are not at all appropriate for such discussions” (Montesquieu 1989, 159). The representatives are generally instructed by the represented, but it does not mean that they were under the constraints of the binding mandate in each particular matters (Montesquieu 1989, 159; see also Podlech 1984, 520).

81 seemed that they were to choose between a direct democracy and a representation with an imperative mandate, in other words, between unity without representation and representation without unity. The latter, unfortunately, was reminiscent of the practice of ancien régime. (Baker 1990, 235-238). However, the revolutionaries had also another line of theory of representation to follow: a social theory of representation. It means, in short, that social interests are rationally represented, in which case property is, on the one hand, a rational criterion of social interest, and, on the other hand, a guarantee of the rationality of the representation. It was a physiocratic view of society in which it was considered, for example by Turgot, that a natural and objective criterion of the representation is the landed wealth of citoyens propriétaires. Unlike Rousseau, Mirabeau, Turgot, Necker et al. focused on the civil society rather than on the political community. Indeed, it was a modern view distinct from the ancient idea of city-states. Society and social interests were those to be rationally represented, not artificial privileges, nor general will of the people or political nation. Representatives, land-owning citizens, did not represent local and particular interests just because of the rationality of the social representation. Thus, there was no need within this theory for the binding mandate. Actually, it would have been a pure contradiction against the theory. Representatives should deliberate rationally. However, together with this rationality, an administrative mode was brought in and a political will was ruled out. The administrative and rational system allowed for the principle of participation in government without admitting the logic of national sovereignty. Society would be served in accordance with its interests. In other words, while Rousseau ruled out the practice of representation, the social theory of representation ruled out the political will. (Baker 1990, 238243). The issue of political representation during the American Revolution and the debates on the Constitution dealt with the problem of composing a large and federative state, on the one hand, and of separating a democracy from a republic, on the other hand. It was not so much a question of a creation of a single nation or a unified nation-state (Wokler 1998, 49). In the tenth of the Federalist Papers, Madison argued that a polity in which the citizens govern themselves directly is a democracy. A polity in which the citizens are ruled by their own elected representatives is a republic. Madison thus redefined ”the republic” as a representative rather than a participatory political community. Representation makes republican government over a more extensive territory possible. This was a way to overcome Montesquieu’s pronouncement that a republic was possible only in a territory of limited extent. Moreover, when representatives stand for larger constituencies, they are also more likely to be freed from popular pressure and thus from factional interests. (e.g. Pocock 1988, 66, 71; Ball 1988, 144; Hanson 1988, 180-181; Dippel 1986, 69). The dispute between Federalists and Antifederalists was not about whether there should be direct democracy or not. It was about the conditions of representation; i.e., whether the representatives should be bound by the imperative mandate or whether they should deliberate independently. According to Madison,

82 the mandate view means that factional interest would be represented, instead of the public good. On the other hand, the Antifederalists argued that the protection of public interest would be left to an elite. Moreover, it was a wrong signal sent to the citizens because it undervalued the importance of civic virtue. Consequently, the Antifederalists often used such expressions as ”resemblance”, ”reflection”, ”mirroring”, and ”like” in their rhetoric. (Ball 1988, 145-149). This dispute also questioned whether representation is compatible with virtue and how it is possible to preserve it against corruption (Pocock 1988, 73). Madison claimed, accordingly, that a more extensive territory of the political community allowed for a ”refinement of opinion” because then there would be greater possibilities to have wise and true statesmen elected. Larger constituencies tended to be more diverse and divided in their opinions, thus permitting representatives to follow their conscience. (Hanson 1988, 180-181). For the Federalists, interests were pejoratively evaluated. Thus their view differed from social theories of representing rational interests, on the one hand; and from the utilitarian theory of individual and harmonising interests, on the other. There was the notion of ”the public good”, above factional interests, and possible to capture through representation. Representation could secure the public good without distraction from the various conflicting particular interests. (Pitkin 1989, 145; Pitkin 1967, 191-192). In accordance with Pitkin, this is an opinion that controls and balances political action: representation not only makes possible a large republic, but it is a way of bringing dangerous social conflicts into a single central forum where it can be controlled and rendered harmless by balancing (Pitkin 1989, 146; see also Pitkin 1967, 195). ”The task of representative government is to reserve the status quo until the mild voice can do its job”, stated Federalist (quoted in Pitkin 1967, 196).

5.2 The combination of “representation” and “nation” during the French Revolution The creation of the National Assembly in 1789 in France can be taken as a crucially important event in the formation of political modernity. 12 Not only the new sovereign, the National Assembly, was considered one and indivisible but also those who were represented by the sovereign assembly, the nation. In 1789, the motto Un roi, une foi, une loi (”one King, one faith, one law”) was replaced by La 12 For example, Robert Wokler has emphasised its significance as follows: ”On 17 June 1789, the deputies of the Estates General, which had been convoked the previous autumn by King Louis XVI, resolved that they were no longer assembled at the monarch’s behest but were rather agents of the national will (le væu national), entrusted with the task of representing the sovereignty of the people of France. The three estates thereby constituted themselves as a single Assemblée nationale, bearing sole authority to interpret the people’s will. It is in this way that political modernity was born, with a unicameral political system corresponding to a unitary will, a unified state speaking on behalf of an undifferentiated nation.” (Wokler 1998, 49-50).

83 Nation, la loi, le roi (”the Nation, the law, the King”) and in August 1792, when the monarchy ceased to exist, the nation became plainly sovereign (Godechot 1988, 14; Fehrenbach 1986, 86). At least for a while, ”the nation” became the source of political power instead of privileged Estates or an absolutist monarch. As Lynn Hunt has put it: ”[w]hen the deputies of the Third Estate resolved to call themselves, and whoever would join them, the ’National Assembly’, they were at once challenging the traditional basis of monarchical authority and opening the way to new questions about the location of authority in general.” (Hunt 1983, 79). The main inventor of the National Assembly, Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès, defined the nation as the unitary body of citizens which was the source of the general will. 13 Sieyès combined the Rousseauan theory of general will with the social theory of representation by modifying the latter by changing the physiocratic idea of landed property to the idea of division of labour. This way he freed the idea of social representation from the physiocratic and administrative constraints. Following the theory of Adam Smith he elaborated the view according to which the modern society was based on the division of labour. For Sieyès, representation was the basic social principle of the division of labour. The Rousseauan part of his theory of representation added to the revolutionary understanding of representation the political definition of the nation as a unitary body of citizens with an inalienable general will. (Baker 1990, 244-246; Hont 1994, 193, 198; Podlech 1984, 525; Sewell, Jr. 1994, 48-50). For Sieyès, the nation had the general will, as Rousseau put it. However, according to the principle of division of labour and in accordance with the social theory of representation, the general will was represented by a representative sovereign which was indivisible and independently deliberative. The unitary general will could no longer be expressed through particularistic principles of order and Estate in the framework of the Estates General. Therefore the Estates General were to be transformed into the National Assembly. Sieyès formulated this principle in the opening of his Qu’est-ce que le Tiers Etat? on January in 1789 this way: What is a nation? A body of associates living under common laws and represented by the same legislative assembly, etc. Is it not obvious that the nobility possesses privileges and exemptions which it brazenly calls its rights and which stand distinct from the rights of the great body of citizens? Because of these special rights, the nobility does not belong to the common order, nor is it subjected to the common laws. Thus its private rights make it a people apart in the great nation. It is truly imperium in imperio. As for its political rights, it also exercises these separately from the nation. It has its own 13 It has been maintained that Sieyès not only opened the French Revolution by publishing What Is the Third Estate? but also closed it by helping Napoleon Bonaparte’s coup d’état in 1799. Sieyès proposed on the fifteenth of June in 1789 that the title of the Assembly would be “Assembly of the Accredited and Recognized Representatives of the French Nation”, and Mirabeau proposed “Representatives of the People”. The former was considered clumsy and timid, the latter too exclusive opposing “the people” with the nobility and the clergy. Finally “National Assembly”, the title Sieyès had used in his What Is the Third Estate?, was suggested and accepted. (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 2, 17).

84 representatives who are charged with no mandate from the people. Its deputies sit separately, and even if they sat in the same chamber as the deputies of ordinary citizens they would still constitute a different and separate representation. They are foreign to the nation first because of their origin, since they do not owe their powers to the People; and secondly because of their aim, since this consists in defending, not the general interest, but the private one. (Siéyès 1963, 58).

Privileged orders were defined out of the nation, and the nation was expressing itself through the representative body of citizens (see also Baker 1990, 247). It means, in principle, that the sovereign representative body constituted ”the nation” (Fehrenbach 1986, 75-76). 14 This was a strong and revolutionary claim for the unprivileged concept of the nation. The claim was, however, directed ’upwards’, i.e., to the privileged Estates. The exclusion ’downwards’ was also defined with the concept of citizenship. For Sieyès, women, tramps and beggars, servants, and non-naturalised foreigners were excluded from the citizenship (Sieyès 1963, 74-75). After this exclusion, Sieyès was for the equality of citizenship: Any citizen who satisfies all the formal requirements for an elector has the right to be represented, and the extent of his representation cannot be a fraction of the extent of some other citizen's representation. The right to be represented is single and indivisible. All citizens enjoy it equally, just as they are all equally protected by the law which they have helped to make. (Sieyès 1963, 80). 15

The citizenship qualified an individual to be represented: ”if one has a right to elect deputies or to be elected oneself, it is not because one is privileged, but because one is a citizen” (Sieyès 1963, 163). There was a possibility for a privileged man to enter into the citizenship and thus be represented by giving up his privileges (ibid. 173). This exclusion of nobles from the nation on the grounds that they did not work, as well as Sieyès’ combination of representation and Rousseau’s theory of popular sovereignty, can be viewed as a conceptual novelty of great importance (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 66). Like Edmund Burke in his famous speech to the electors of Bristol, also Sieyès argued against the representation of local interests. The representative was to represent the nation as a whole. In other words, “it belongs to the National Assembly, and to it alone, to interpret and present the general will of the nation” (quoted in Baker 1990, 248). Direct democracy was, in accordance with Sieyès, impossible in such a large and populous country like France. In order to avoid particular divisions, the people can speak only through its representatives. Only the deliberative representative body, a unitary national assembly, could find out the general will of the nation. (e.g. Sieyès 1963, 121-122). 16 14 Fehrenbach has concluded that: ”Das Ziel war die Ablösung der ständischen durch eine staatsbürgerliche Gesellschaft, die sich durch einheitliche politische Willensbildung und Teilnahme an der Gesetzgebung zur ’Nation’ erst eigentlich konstituierte.” (Fehrenbach 1986, 75-76; cf. Schönemann 1992, 322-323). 15 Moreover: ”Inequalities of wealth or ability are like inequalities of age, sex, size, colour, etc. In no way do they alter the nature of the equality of citizenship; the rights inherent in citizenship cannot attach to differences." (Sieyès 1963, 161-162). 16 There were, of course, those who did not support the unicameral representative assembly. A bicameral representation combined with a strong royal power, in accordance with

85 The representative system was, for Sieyès, far more than merely an unavoidable alternative to democracy. Rather, it was a natural consequence of the division of labour in a modern society and, moreover, an exercise in political enlightenment. (Baker 1990, 249-250; Sewell, Jr. 1994, 67). This came to be a commonly held opinion of the educated middle-classes in Europe during the nineteenth century. Because the great majority of men were only “work machines”, as Sieyès put it, it was in their interest to leave the right to legislate to those who had through leisure, education, and enlightenment the capacity to interpret the general will (Baker 1990, 250). The principle of the division of labour can be found behind Sieyès’ distinction between active and passive citizens, which was made explicit in 1791 in the French Constitution (see Wokler 1998, 52). The division follows the line of exclusions from the concept of citizen Sieyès had made in 1789 in his his Qu’est-ce que le Tiers Etat?. In a nutshell, the social discourse of representation had eliminated the demand of the imperative mandate, and the principle of the division of labour had abolished the physiocratic constraints. So there was left the idea of representation as a deliberative procedure without any binding mandate. We can conclude in accordance with Baker: “By deriving the practice of representation from the principle of the division of labour and the need for the rational representation of social interests, and combining these elements of the social theory of representation with a modified version of the sovereignty of the general will, [Sieyès] gave an entirely new meaning to the conception of ‘representative sovereignty’ first introduced by Hobbes.” (Baker 1990, 250). As Baker notes, one of the paradoxes of the French Revolution was that the revolutionaries, in embracing the principle of popular sovereignty and the concept of general will of Rousseau, nevertheless fell back upon the practice of representation which was explicitly rejected by Rousseau (ibid. 224). 17 The revolutionary idea of representation failed during the years to come after 1789. The fact that the King was allowed a suspend veto in 1791 might have kept some traditional views on representation alive, although the monarch was in Montesquieu’s principle of the separation of powers, was, however, too close the English system in nationally-oriented France to be successful. “The royalists” could not attach themselves to the supporters of the “sovereignty of the people”. (Söderhjelm 1927, 59-60). 17 The strong emphasis that Wokler has put on the creation of modern nation-state is based on the interpretation that, in contrast to Hobbes’ theory of representation and the practice of the ancien régime, Sieyès defined the represented to be unitary having a collective character of its own. The National Assembly deliberated not only about the powers of the King but also about the powers of the people. (Wokler 1998, 48, 51). It can be noted that Hont does not stress the novelty of the revolutionary combination of “nation” and “representation”. On the contrary, he argues that the language of the “nation” and “representation” of Sieyès was a continuation of the Hobbesian theory of indirect popular sovereignty. This implies that Hont interprets Hobbes in a different manner than, for instance, Wokler and Baker. For Hont, Hobbes meant that the political community is “sufficiently united” in itself and not only in the person of sovereign. However, this does not mean that Sieyès was able to just pick up the absolutistic idea of representation, which is often linked with the Hobbesian theory, for Hont maintains that the French subjects were far from being citizens even in the Hobbesian sense during the ancien régime. Yet the ancien régime was not the only enemy Sieyès was attacking. He had to keep a distance also from the pre-modern corporative tradition of the mixed constitution, on the one hand, and with popular republicanism, on the other hand. (Hont 1994, 171-172, 186-187, 191).

86 practice left without power and cut off from the populace to which he might have appealed (Wokler 1998, 51; see also Fehrebach 1986, 95). “The nation” was by no means an uncontested concept. It was rather the key concept of the revolutionary struggle between the rivalry factions, and between the revolutionaries and royalists (Fehrenbach 1986, 96-100). The French Constitution in 1791 had made the distinction between active and passive citizens clear. 18 The Jacobins opposed this distinction and sought to return directly to the people instead of the representatives of the nation. They questioned the unity of the represented nation. Until 1791, the concept of nation had functioned as a common collective concept for all those who supported the revolution. However, it soon became a topic of contention who should be excluded from the nation, i.e. who should be counted as a dependent person. The Jacobins wanted to, on the one hand, include “the passive citizens” who fought for the revolution, and, on the other, exclude social groups of wealthy positions. Thus, the story of “the nation” during the first years of the revolution goes in general from inclusion to exclusion, from integration to polarisation. (see Schönemann 1992, 323-324). On the other hand, the story goes from representation to the rule by opinion (Furet 1995, 541). While the Jacobins opposed the political idea of the sovereignty of the nation represented by the assembly, and while they believed in the sovereignty of the people in general, they, nevertheless, fell into the same monolithic view on the nation as did Sieyès in his formation of the undivided and independent National Assembly. They “attempted to root out the people’s enemies within the state, just as Sieyès had sought to silence the enemies of the state within the nation” (Wokler 1998, 53; see also Fehrenbach 1986, 100-102). According to Jacobins, the nation was to be cleansed of its internal differences. The French terror was just an extreme form of homogenisation of the state (Hont 1994, 205). Nevertheless, it was the representative system, rather than the Jacobin sovereignty of the people, which came to dominate the idea of the modern nationstate. The democratisation of political representation was often considered the key to the realisation of the national idea. It is thus possible to view a nation-state in a light of a political innovation of representative democracy. Accordingly, the relationship between representation and nation-state that was created during the French Revolution offers a perspective on the political problem that underscored the long nineteenth century. It was the difficulty of combining the sovereignty of the people with an indirect participation in the political decision making. For if the representative body created “the nation”, it should be then decided who were not included in “the nation”. Despite the revolutionary rhetoric of the sovereignty of the people, it was the social theory of representation, and especially the physiocratic version of it, and its application in accordance with the principle of the division of labour, that became to dominate the topic of representation during the nineteenth century. Moreover, the principle of the division of labour was combined with the principle of the separation of powers. 19 18

The National Assembly was replaced by the Legislative Assembly in October 1791. It can be noted that Sieyès argued for the separation of powers after the execution of Robespierre and the experiences of the Terror in 1795 but he was voted down (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 19, 92). 19

87 There was an inner tension built into the revolutionary concept of the nation. Even if “the nation” was introduced as a voluntary and political concept, it was, nevertheless, reduced to an ‘original’ meaning of “the nation”. Namely, Sieyès argued that “the nation” is “a body of associates living under common laws and represented by the same legislative assembly”, but he also maintained that ”the nation is prior to everything” and that “[it] is the source of everything” (Sieyès 1963, 124). Another inner tension within “the nation” deals with the concept of representation. The principle of the division of labour divided the members of the nation between active and passive citizens. It was not only a question of who were capable of representing the people, but also, who were capable of being represented. The principle of the division of labour was thus applied twice: firstly, in the practice of representation, i.e. in their role as representatives and represented; and secondly, in the meaning of inclusion and exclusion in relation to the political nation, i.e. as active or passive citizens in the sense of political citizens as “available classes”, on the one hand, and excluded “labouring machines”, on the other hand (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 152-159). On the one hand, the creation of the National Assembly in 1789 marked the rebirth of the nation through the procedure of political representation. On the other hand, the representatives were excluded from the executive power, for the executive power was considered corrupt and corrupting by its very nature, being separate from the people. In accordance with Furet, ”since the people alone had the right to govern […] power was in the hands of those who spoke for the people” (Furet 1995, 540). Two dimensions of the populism of the rhetoric of ”the nation” can be distinguished. Firstly, it was the popular representation which constituted the nation; secondly, however, the political power was in the hands of those who were able to speak in the name of ”the nation” and ”the people”. It is possible to view demands for the extension of suffrage in the light of these two dimensions. The question are then: How can the representative body keep its legitimacy in presenting itself in the name of the nation? What is ”the nation” the representative body has created like? Who are included, who are excluded? It has been argued by William H. Sewell, Jr., who has studied the rhetoric of Sieyès, that What Is the Third Estate? is an exception among the writings of Sieyès. In fact, it stands in contradiction to his permanent opinions, and it should be understood in the light of a rhetorical polemic against aristocracy (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 180-181). When taking into account other texts than just What Is the Third Estate?, it is easier to note the inner tension of “the nation” or, rather, the exclusion from the political nation that Sieyès advocated. For him, ignorance was equivalent to insufficient wealth, and the interest in the good order of the state was guaranteed by landed property, which was as a consequence a condition of eligibility (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 166-167). The indivisible nation seemed to be divided by labour, and it was the wealth of the “available classes” that secured the education and intelligence that was needed in political life. Consequently, the natural and civil rights must be equal for all members of society, but the same was not true for political rights. Sieyès wrote in his Reasoned Exposition of the Rights of Man and Citizen, published by order of the Constitutional Committee of the National Assembly in July 1789, about passive citizens and active citizens in a manner

88 which highlights the inner division of the nation created by representation: So far we have only explained natural and civil rights of citizens. We still need to recognize political rights. The difference between these two sorts of rights consists in the fact that natural rights are those for whose maintenance and development society was formed; and political rights, those by which society is formed. It would be better, for the clarity of language, to call the first passive rights, and the second, active rights. All the inhabitants of a country should enjoy the rights of the passive citizen: all have a right to the protection of their person, of their propriety, of their liberty, etc., but not all have the right to take an active part in the formation of public powers; not all are active citizens. Women, at least in the current state of things, children, foreigners, those also who contribute nothing to the maintenance of the public establishment, should not actively influence the public weal. All can enjoy the advantages of society; but only those who contribute to the public establishment, are like true stockholders in the great social enterprise. Only they are true active citizens, the true members of the association. (quoted in Sewell, Jr. 1994, 176-177).

For Sieyès, “the little people” were capable of choosing their local electors but not becoming themselves representatives. The system of indirect elections, which was supported by Sieyès and put into practice in the Constitution of 1791, was designed as a procedure of pyramidal selection in order to make it possible to combine relatively broad suffrage with an elitist representation. (see Sewell, Jr. 1994, 179-180). Thus there is an element of irony in the consequences of Sieyès’ What Is the Third Estate?, for his anti-aristocratic and inclusive social rhetoric took a path of its own. It was “soon used primarily against the very classes he had meant to empower and the very political positions he had meant to support” (Sewell, Jr. 1994, 198).

5.3 On the languages of “nation” and “patriotism” It should be noted that rhetoric of ”nation”, ”national”, ”nationality”, ”nationstate” do not necessarily have conceptual connection to the concept of nationalism. My purpose is not to write about nationalism as a phenomenon. Therefore, such questions like whether the origins of nationalism should be derived from primordial ethnic communities or whether the rise of nationalism was imagined (cf. Anderson 1983, 15) are not of great interest for my purposes. 20 The French Revolution, on the one hand, and the Napoleonic wars, on the other, have been the two cores of the most interpretations on nationalism – often combined with a functionalist view which is based on functions and demands of capitalistic and 20

It can be argued that ”nationalism” as a politically important concept is relevant only from the 1880s on in Europe. However, the date of the birth of nationalism has been stretched at least from sixteenth-century England over seventeenth-century England, the French Revolution, the German Romantic era and industrialism, to the period of imperialism (see Hall 1998, 25). For example, Hettne, Sörlin, and Østergård depart in their Den globala nationalismen (1998) from the perspective that “the Westfalian order” after 1648 lays behind the modern nation-states and thus behind modern nationalism.

89 industrial societies. 21 The division is visible also in the categories of state nationalism and cultural nationalism, categories which are based on the distinction between Staatsnation and Kulturnation introduced by Friedrich Meinecke in 1908. These kinds of divisions often are linked with categorisations between western and eastern nationalism; between, on the one hand, British (often known as English) and French nationalism; and, on the other hand, German (and Italian) nationalism. 22 The division has also been projected into two ideal types of the concept of citizen: a political citizen, Le citoyen; and a member of a nation-state. It is a division between a Roman territorial right, ius soli; and an origin defined by blood ties, ius sangvinis. Moreover, the division has been conceived of as a difference between individualism (the Renaissance, the Reformation, capitalism, the Enlightenment) and anti-individualism, which expresses itself in the form of organic idea of society and state (cf. Hettne et al. 1998, 310-311). Yet, simple divisions into two are problematic (see Koselleck 2000, 369). A clear division is not possible merely between different nations or nation-states but also between such pure categories as ”liberal nationalism” and ”conservative nationalism”, or ”political nationalism” and ”ethnic nationalism”, etc. 23 Rather, the rhetoric of ”nation” is always some kind of mixture of demos and ethnos (Hettne et al. 1998, 284, 309-312; Smith 1991, 13). My perspective is that, instead of categorising and classifying different types of nationalism into their ’right’ place, the primary focus should be directed to the rhetoric of the concept of nation and its related vocabulary in concrete historical situations. This means that ”nation” is taken as a rhetorical instrument in the struggle for political power. It is nowadays a commonplace interpretation that 21 According to Smith, the two modern national models are “civic-territorial” and “ethnicgenealogical”. It means, “on the one hand, loyalty to the political unit, the state expressed in terms of citizenship rights and obligations; on the other hand, a sense of affiliation and solidarity with the ethnic community into which one's family was born and socialized” (Smith 1986, 151). 22 For example, the entry ”Nation” in the lexicon on the basic concepts in France between 1680 and 1820, Handbuch politisch-sozialer Grundbegriffe in Frankreich 1680—1820, gives us a common description: ”Die politische Definition der ’Nation’ gilt als typisch französisch. Es fehlt die Mystik der Sprache, des Volkes, der gemeinsamen Abstammung, die den deutschen Nationsbegriff charakterisiert. Nicht die Sprach- und Abstammungsgemeinschaft, nicht das Volk im ethnischen Sinn, sondern der gemeinsasme Staat und die Rechte der Bürger prägen die Einheit der ’Nation’.” (Fehrenbach 1986, 76). 23 There seems to be some historical evidence for the distinction between the French and German conceptions of “nation”, however. According to Lüsebrink, who has studied the transfer of the semantic field of "nation" from French to German, the democratic-republican dimension of the meaning of the French concept of nation differed fundamentally, since the years 1792-1793, from the signification of the German semantic field Volk-Nation-Vaterland. (Lüsebrink 1998, 117-119). During the revolution and around year 1800 the German word Volk could be used both parallel to the French ”nation” and as an opposite counter concept to it (Koselleck 1992, 144). It has been pointed out that the German nationalists called not simply for ethnical unity, but also for constitutional reforms. However, the republican reading of Volk and Nation had a weak appeal in the German states. The situation in the German states tended to favour the ethnic-cultural reading of the Volk-concept because of the absence of a political nation-state. The Herderian notion of the Volk as a cultural unit proved the more compelling way of deploying the concept in political language. (Trägårdh 1993, 71-74). A lexical analysis of ”Nation” and ”Volk” shows that the concept of nation was during the turn of the centuries a ’pre-static’ (prestaatlich) concept. In other words, it consisted of ethnic and cultural meanings, whereas the concept of Volk had clearly political connotations. (Koselleck 1992, 380-388).

90 appealing to ”the nation” and performing in the name of ”the nation” became, during the French Revolution, the key instruments in the political struggle. For instance, a question like ”Are you of the Nation?” became the watchword of National Guard patrols by the fall of 1789 (Hunt 1983, 79). It is thus possible to view the rhetoric of ”nation” and efforts to perform in the name of ”the nation” as a breakthrough of modern political practices (Liikanen 1995, 40-41). Politics was becoming ”a matter of establishing just who represented the people, or equality, or the nation: victory was in the hands of those who were capable of occupying and keeping that symbolic position” (Furet 1995, 540; see also Breuilly 1996, 150-155). The revolutionary use of “the nation” often was linked with the rhetoric of ”patriotism” and ”fatherland”. Patriotism has usually been taken as synonymous with nationalism or as something more natural and less political, a less conscious and less dangerous version of nationalism. Paradoxically enough, the conceptual history of ”patriotism” reveals a rich political content of the concept. 24 Especially the republican political thought has had ”patriotism” as one of its key concepts. It is a common perception that the ”patriotic” vocabulary developed in the political life of the Roman Republic. However, the political meaning of the concept has often been taken as worn out, as having had connotations which refer to loyal commitments to ”fatherland” and its rulers. Nevertheless, ”patriotism” has been an explicit political concept in the republican language of Renaissance, in the seventeenth-century civic humanist tradition, and in the revolutionary languages of the late eighteenth century, as well as in the national liberal language in the nineteenth century. It is important to note that the concept has been openly contested, and especially during the late eighteenth century it gained both revolutionary and loyalist meanings. During the nineteenth century, ”patriotism” had these two main meanings until the dominance of conservative and aggressive nationalism more or less took over the concept at the end of the nineteenth century (e.g. Viroli 1995; Dietz 1989, Cunningham 1989). My purpose is not to argue for a clear separation between the rhetoric of ”nation” and ”fatherland”. On the contrary, political rhetoric has often been blurred in a way that these two concepts have been used as intertwined. Nevertheless, there have also been cases in which political actors have wanted to make a distinction between the rhetoric of ”patriotism” and that of ”the nation”. ”Patriotism” is the concept which is commonly so positively evaluated that it is an often used concept in political struggles. It can be suggested, that it has been in principle possible to speak in the name of ”patriotism” without positive references to ”the nation”, but it has not been easy to praise ”the nation” without referring to one’s patriotism. ”Patriotism” has often been so positively evaluated as a concept that its ”counter concept” can be said to have been a negation. Then, the only way out from a contrary position is to appeal to one’s own patriotism, either by demanding for a possession of the commonly accepted content of the concept or by presenting a personal version of the concept. The ”patriot” vocabulary originates from the Latin word ”patria”. The 24

I take the concept of patriotism as an ’umbrella concept’ of the ”patri”-vocabulary, which originate from the Latin word ”patria”.

91 Ancient Greeks referred with the word ”patriotai” to foreigners, not to the citizens of polis. Instead, in the Roman Republic ”patria”, Rome in itself, was the place that symbolised moral, religious, and political values – values one was ready to die for. Heroic courage and civic virtues were considered patriotic. In Rome, ”patria” meant res publica, and referred to common liberty and common good. Cicero associated it with the freedom and the laws of the republic, Sallust with the freedom from an oligarchic rule. For Quintilian, ”nation” referred to the customs of the people, ”patria” to the laws and the institutions of the city. As the empire expanded, allegiance to ”patria” became an increasingly abstract matter, more like an idea than a specific locale of the city. As the Christian religion spread out, ”patria” became more like a spiritual concept. The Medieval ”patria” had lost its rhetorical appeal to the Church. ”Patria” re-actualised as a political concept together with the rise of kingdoms and the institution of taxation. In the twelfth century the concept was used both in a political and religious manner. By the end of the thirteenth century, ”patria” meant, together with local attachments, commitments to the fatherland that was personified in the person of the King. Res publica was linked with the concept merely in the Scholastic philosophy. (Dietz 1989, 177-181; Viroli 1995, 19-21; Huizinga 1960, 101-106, 117). In the Renaissance city states, ”patria” regained its classical meaning, and Cicero was often quoted. ”Patria” stood for common freedom of all citizens of the city state, and it could be preserved only through the public spirit of the citizens. Opposite to a ”patriot” was a corrupt citizen who fostered his (sic) own private interests or his group’s interests. In Florence, the political elite celebrated the military and cultural superiority of the state with patriotic language. Machiavelli was an exception in this sense, for he was not interested in the historical mission or superiority of Florence. He wanted to apply the civic virtues of the Roman republic in order to further the blossom of Italy. When Machiavelli spoke of virtù, what he meant was patriotism in the republican sense of love of common liberty that makes men capable of seeing their particular interests as part of the common good. The love of the common good and the love of country was in fact the love of liberty and of the laws that protected it. As with Cicero, the serving one’s own country was the highest duty of an honest man. If the ”patria” fell into tyranny, then this duty was cancelled. To Machiavelli, love of ”patria” defended the liberty and order against tyranny and corruption. (Viroli 1995, 24-39). 25 The republican rhetoric of ”patria” decreased considerably from the mid-sixteenth century on. The reduction of the rhetoric of ”patria” went hand in hand with the rise of absolutism in Europe. In addition, the contract theory outweighed classical republicanism in political theory in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and thus strengthened 25 Machiavelli’s conception of liberty in fact includes what the theoreticians of negative liberty have presented. Liberty means lack of coercion and independence from others. The crucial question for Machiavelli was however, what kind of community can best guarantee the individual liberty in striving for one’s chosen ends. To him, the only form of polity in which this is possible is a self-governing community, in which the will of the body politic determines its own actions. It is in principle possible that a monarchy would be a such form of polity, but a republic is indisputably the best form. Accordingly, it is only those who live under republican forms of government who can actually hope not to lose the personal liberty to pursue their chosen ends. (Skinner 1984, 205-207).

92 this decrease (Skinner 1992, 300-301; Skinner 1998). Under absolutist regimes, ”patria” was usually considered a state that was personified in a king. ”The reason of state” replaced the republican political thought, and the love of country came to mean loyalty towards a state and a king. Radical use of “patria” survived where political liberties survived. Neapolitan insurrection in 1647 was an example of the survival of such rhetoric. The rhetoric of ”patria” was then used in the political struggle, so as to argue that the revolution was in fact the revolution of loyal people, since they were loyal, as one should be, to their patria and not to the person of sovereign. (Viroli 1995, 41-44). In the radical use of ”patria”, there is a tension between the loyalty towards a ruler and authorities on the one hand, and towards the political community as a whole on the other. Thus, there was a line of continuity in the combination of political liberty and “patriotism”. In the seventeenth-century English political discourse, the language of ”patriot” was introduced by the Commonwealth men and radical Whigs. According to them, to be “patriotic” meant the defence of the English liberties and rights against tyranny, defence of laws and constitution against the King and the court, Whig politics against Tories. “A patriot” was against an absolute power of the king. (Viroli 1995, 54; Dietz 1989, 183; Furtardo 1989, 47). The concept became more openly contested in the eighteenth century. For example, Bolingbroke’s The Idea of a Patriot King in 1738 was a rhetorical attempt to free ”patriot” from the control of the Whigs. His attempt can be seen as an example of an ”innovative ideologist”, in which case it was his rhetorical strategy to present his own political arguments by appealing to the commonly accepted vocabulary of the Whigs and thus stretching the meaning of ”patriot” to include also the King and monarchical connotations (Skinner 1974, 93-128). Up till the mid-eighteenth century, ”patriot” belonged to the vocabulary of the both parties in England. The parties disputed over the possession of the “patriotic” position, but the concept in itself was positively evaluated and attached with meanings like a defence of the constitutional liberties and a fight against corruption. (Dietz 1989, 185; Cunningham 1989, 59). In the American Revolution, to be “a patriot” meant that one was for the revolution and against the English king and corruption. “Patriotism” signified a free republic, public spirit and love of liberty (Dietz 1989, 186-187). In the political thought of the Enlightenment, “patriotism” was often associated with the republican spirit of classical political thought and Renaissance city republics. “An economic man” of the modern times did not fit into this pattern, though. In modern large-scale states, common good was to be combined with the need of a man to pursuit his economic interests. For example, Montesquieu expected that a modern man can be patriotic in a modern way and watch his private interests if he had public spirit and loved the common good, i.e. the laws and political institutions. (Viroli 1995, 69-75; Huizinga 1960, 141-142; Kemiläinen 1978, 74; Sternberger 1967, 39). Voltaire, too, associated “patriotism” with the respect of laws, political liberties, and self-government. “Patriotism” was not bound to a certain culture, land or ethnicity, and it was not antithetical to “cosmopolitism”. (Viroli 1995, 77-78; Sternberger 1967, 49). Enlightened “patriotism” was not set against “cosmopolitism” but rather against the lack of

93 interest in the common good and against egoism (Stenius 1987, 103, 191; Nordin 2000, 342-343). In a practical life, however, the cosmopolitan aspect was often undermined by the fact that a good citizen was to serve his own country first of all (Kemiläinen 1975, 61-81; Kemiläinen 1978, 70-75). An ideal patriot was a loyal and useful member of the society. Patriotic societies often demanded economic and social reforms, yet at the same time showed loyalty towards the political establishment (Vierhaus 1980a, 8; Vierhaus 1980b, 19-20). During the French Revolution, the patriotic vocabulary gained radical and revolutionary connotations (e.g. Dann 1988, 2-11; Huizinga 1960, 131). “Fatherland” was, together with the concept of nation, a highly revolutionary concept. As a matter of fact, Patrie was an equivalent to the nation the revolution had created (Hobsbawm 1994, 99). After the revolution, “patriotism” held its radical political connotations, and the rhetoric of “patriotism” was also linked with the demands for the solution of “the social question” (Viroli 1995, 95-104; Cunningham 1989, 65). In England, the radical patriotic language was at its peak when the Chartists propagated their demands. Radical uses of “patriotism” was often directed against the state. It was often also international in its character and struggles for national freedom in other countries were commonly taken as principal questions on political freedoms and rights in a patriot’s own country. (Cunningham 1989, 68-75). The rhetoric of “patriotism” was particularly used in the campaigns for parliamentary reforms. In Britain at the beginning of the 1830s, the debate on the Reform Act dealt considerably with the question – who were good citizens and patriots? (Colley 1994, 336; see also Viroli 1995, 141). National romantic currents from the late eighteenth century onwards emphasised interpretations on “patriotism” which were connected to sentiments which emphasised natural togetherness and a belonging to the same natural community, which was the nation defined by its common origin, language, and culture. The rise of romantic “patriotism” has often been attached to Herder who used the concepts of nation and Vaterland as synonymous (Viroli 1995, 113-124). It has been argued, however, that even if Herder defended a sort of narrow-minded patriotism, it nevertheless had a great deal in common with republican ideals of patriotism and anti-aristocratism (Hont 1994, 213-215; see also Schönemann 1992, 316-319). 26 Following common lines of more or less problematic categorisations between ”western” and ”German”, the German concept of patriotism has usually been associated with merely ethnic national ideals. There were, however, principles of justice and civic virtues in the interpretations of the concept. Yet the loyal, German ”patriot” was often also concerned about the political institutions and education. In short, there were two lines of interpretation on ”a patriot”: on 26 Fichte, too, had a link between ”patriotism” and a cosmopolitan understanding of humanity. Thus, his idea of patriotism was not in conflict with the well-being of the humanity and other Vaterländer in general (Viroli 1995, 126-135). Kant, in turn, strictly separated national sentiments and the concept of patriotism which he associated with ”cosmopolitism”. The combination of ”patriotism” and ”cosmopolitism”, in which a man identified himself with the state through patriotism and with the humanity through cosmopolitanism, was Kant’s doublestrategy against ”national irrationalism” (Schönemann 1992, 319-321). Hegel, too, had a republican understanding of ”patriotism”, for he placed it in the field of public life within the state.

94 the one hand, ”a patriot” was for the Rechtstaat, civic liberties, as well as for social and political reforms; on the other hand ”a patriot” could hail the traditional role of the Estates, which had guaranteed the freedom of the people. (Vierhaus 1980b, 11-21).

5.4 Breakthrough of the idea of national representation in Prussia The concept of ”national representation” was used in German discussions after the revolution in France. The issue of “national assembly” was taken up by a small group of high military officers and civil servants in 1808 (Koselleck 1987, 172). However, it was the old language of Estates, Landstände, that eventually dominated. It was employed in the name of the old rights and freedoms against a royal absolutism. It was argued that there should be ”a real representation” instead of ”a personal representation”. (Podlech 1984, 528-529). The background of the Prussian discussions on “national representation” was always to some extent Allgemeine Landrecht, the law codification of 1794. It was a type of combination of the theory of natural law and Estate principles (Koselleck 1987, 24-27). It was criticised by those who wanted to abolish the Estates and provincial representative organs. A man should raise from “a subject” to “a citizen”, Kant, for example, argued. (Koselleck 1987, 153-159). A concrete plan for national representation was developed by Friedfich vom Stein in 1808. ”The nation” was to be represented by the Reichstände in NationalRepräsentation. The Estates would be built on social and economic classes. It was a pattern in which a social competence played a more central role than in the system of the old Estates. (Podlech 1984, 530-531). Moreover, it was an administrative reform from above rather than “a national representation” from below that was planned (Koselleck 1987, 176). It was understood that the bureaucracy represented the state as a whole, whereas the Estates represented particular interests (Koselleck 1969, 216). The Deutsche Bundesakte in 1815 stated that ”[i]n allen Bundesstaaten wird ein Landständische Verfassung stattfinden” (Koselleck 1969, 212). All German States were ordered to have a monarchical constitution and a representative assembly in which the landed nobility had a prominent role. A common national representation remained unrealised. The Federal Assembly (Bundesversammlung) of the German States in 1815 was, like the old Reichstag, a congress of delegates (Gesandtenkongreß). (Podlech 1984, 531; Lagerspetz 1997, 131). The word ”Nationalrepräsentation” was felt as problematic and it was often ignored (Podlech 1984, 532-533). Many German conservatives, like Friedrich von Gentz, who had translated Burke’s Reflections on the French Revolution into German in 1793, if not totally rejected the vocabulary of representation, at least wanted to stress the dangers of a representative constitution, for it tended to give a priority to the idea of Volksfreiheit instead of order and obedience. Gentz thought that the

95 monarch can decide upon the constitution unilaterally without any binds. 27 The true landständisch representation meant an idealistic and direct participation of the totality of the people (Gesamtmasse des Volks) through organic corporations in the business of the governance of the state. In 1819, Gentz associated ”representation” with other pejorative epithets like: ”Constitution … der unsinnige Grundsatz der obersten Souveränität des Volks”, ”öffentliche Meinung”, ”Demagogie”, and ”Anarchie”. However, the Vormärz theory on representation was somewhat more flexible than what Gentz presented. The main problem was, how to combine the sovereignty of the monarch with constitutionalism. (Podlech 1984, 535; see also Lagerspetz 1997, 132). Among conservatives, the representation by the Estates was accepted when it did not weaken the power of the monarch. The advocates of an organic-historical and romantic school were willing to view people’s representation in a positive light. They argued for the historical old German democracy and for the old Estates within this tradition. This meant, consequently, that there was a balance between the monarch and the popular representative body. (Podlech 1984, 537-538). German liberals stressed the importance of a representative body so that the government and the monarch could be controlled. The people ought to have the final power. The body of representatives would then consist of independent real estate owners, wholesale traders, capitalists, and industrial entrepreneurs. This kind of ’capitalist parliamentary’ idea of representation lasted several decades in the nineteenth century and took distance from the pattern of the old Estates. (Podlech 1984, 533). Accordingly, Prussian reforms during the early nineteenth century were based on a liberal economic policy instead of political liberalism (Koselleck 1969, 214-215; Koselleck 1987, 354). The concept of “citizen” (Staatsbürger) developed as a result of an extension of an economic “Wirtschaftsbürger” as new members were included in existing privileged corporations rather than as a consequence of a principled abolition of the Estate privileges (Koselleck 1987, 68, 596). The right to vote in provincial elections was based on landed property, which forced educated middle-class people to invest in land in order to get full political rights. In the 1840s, the criterion that the right to vote was bound to a landed property could not protect the system of Estates any longer. The breakthrough of citizenship happened finally in the revolution of 1848 when educated and propertied people were given the same rights. (Koselleck 1987, 57, 395, 447, 572). The assembly of the Landtag in 1847 was a sign of a united movement for a new constitution in Prussia. The assembly took the liberty to represent “the state” and the “bürgerliche Gesellschaft” and thus broke the monopoly of the bureaucracy in the right to represent the whole (Koselleck 1987, 27

For Hegel, the purpose of representation was to mediate between the bürgerliche Gesellschaft and the state, and to bring the typical interests of the bürgerliche Gesellschaft, like those of craftsmen, commerce, and industry, to the law-making process in the state. The Estates represented interests, not individuals. Actually, it did not matter if a representative was changed to another, only the interests were to be represented. The representative body did not have such a controlling function towards the monarch as in liberal theories on constitution. Rather, the Estates formed another half of the totality of representation besides the monarchical or governmental power. (Podlech 1984, 534). Hegel rejected the idea of popular sovereignty, but he also argued that the constitution could not be given by the unilateral act of the Ruler (Lagerspetz 1997, 132).

96 367, 447). The revolution in 1848 marked the change from the principle of the Estates to the principle of citizens in Prussia. In the 1840s, German ideas of ”the parliamentary principle” and ”parliamentary government” were developed. A link to the revolutionary concept of “representation” was clear as it was referred to the ”the sovereignty of the people”. 28 It was also referred to the distinction between ”repräsentativer” and ”landständischer” constitutions. Moreover, it was maintained that the concept of “representation” was to be linked with the concept of “democracy”. (Podlech 1984, 539). The revolutionary idea of “national representation” and the idea of the sovereignty of the people was usually expressed by the German radicals of 1848 with the term ”Volksvertretung”. Expressions like ”eine Vertretung der Nation bei der Bundesversamlung”, ”Nationalvertretung”, and ”Nationalregierung” were also used in order to express the goal to unite the German states. ”Deutsche Volksvertretung” and ”deutsches Parlament” were mentioned in the revolutionary demands in March 1848. The representatives of the Frankfurt National Assembly called themselves ”Vertreter des Volkes”, ”Vertreter der Nation”, and ”Repräsentanten der Nation”. The idea of direct democracy was articulated only marginally. The idea of the sovereignty of the people was thus connected to the idea of representation. The idea of modern parliamentary system in the meaning of the British parliamentarism was put forward somewhat vaguely and more like an expectation to be realised in the future. (Podlech 1984, 541-542). The demand for a free constitution and the concept of “nation” were combined in slogans like: ”Nationalfreiheit und Einheit” and ”Nationaleinheit und Freiheit”. Moreover, the national idea was a part of an international movement which meant that national struggles, for example, in Greece and in Poland were enthusiastically supported in radical circles throughout Europe. (Schönemann 1992, 358-359). Some conservatives identified every idea of Volksvertretung with revolutionary political ideas. The unity of the state was to be met in the person of the sovereign monarch. The representative system would lead to the principle of the sovereignty of the people, and to the principle of parliamentary government, i.e., to the dependence of the government on the representative body. To apply the principle of census would not help because the principle in itself was false and immoral. Moreover, it would only benefit those who had money and capital. (Podlech 1984, 539-540). Friedrich Julius Stahl, however, combined the principle of a strong monarchy with constitutionalism. According to him, the state must have three powers: first, a government that leads and governs; second, a people’s representation that conveys the interests and rights of the subjects to the government; third, a public spirit (öffentliche Gesinnung) that brings the people together. Stahl’s solution was a double representation in which a sovereign king and a representative body watched the interest of the state. In other words, a king, while being sovereign, could not rule against the laws and without mediating with the representatives. 28

It was stated in Staats-Lexicon in 1842: ”Repräsentativ heißt in engerer Bedeutung nicht mehr kurzweg eine jede Verfassung, derzufolge das Volk Vertreter = Repräsentanten wählt, sondern man bezeichnet damit wohl auch speziell solche Verfassungen, bei welchen das Prinzip der Volkssouveränität vorherrscht” (quoted in Podlech 1984, 539).

97 The written constitution would regulate this relation. The representative body was not to be chosen by an individual vote, but by an elite through the corporate estates. Thus, there was no question about national representation based on the idea of the modern individual citizenship. However, the nation was represented as a whole, Stahl argued, for the Estates formed one national whole and articulated its will. 29 A monarch and the Estates would represent the nation in different ways: a monarch through the state, the people through the Estates. (Podlech 1984, 541). 30 According to Stahl, “the people” (Volk) was not only a natural and historical, but also a legal, concept. Consequently, ”the state” was not only a product of “the people” but also a source of “the people”. The concept of “the people” was thus considered ”a unity of political power”. It was an argument that could be used against national demands of, for example, 1848. ”The reason of state” ruled over national campaigns. (Schönemann 1992, 355-356). Johan Caspar Bluntschli stated in 1864 that the politically educated people cannot live without representation. The representatives and represented would create a kind of trusteeship through a constitution. The right to vote was not any longer bound with the Estates but instead with ”der großen Volksklassen”. He associated European political systems with representative monarchies, whereas in the United States of America there was a representative democracy. The representative system was the principle of a modern liberalism, either in its monarchist-constitutional or democratic form. Accordingly, the idea of representation had become widely accepted. From 1867 on, it was common to refer to the Reichstag with the term ”Nationalrepräsentation”. (Podlech 1984, 542546). Bluntschli did not only separate representative monarchies from democratic ones, he also defined German nationalism as different from western nationalism, a distinction which has been repeatedly used in literature on nationalism, as mentioned above. According to Bluntschli, the western concept of “nation” meant political community, whereas the German usage of ”nation” referred to a cultural and ethnic community. The concept of “the people” (Volk), instead, was political.31 Bluntschli maintained that ”the nation” is a dynamic concept, ”the people” an organisational one. The conclusion was that “the people” did not exist prior to the state. (Koselleck 1992, 388). Unlike Stahl, who argued against national demands with the help of the same conclusion, Bluntschli did not deny the possibility of such demands. To him, ”Nationalprinzip” was an outcome of the democratisation of the political concept of ”the people” and the politicisation of the cultural concept of ”the nation” (Koselleck 1992, 388). “The people” and ”Nation” became party concepts both inside and outside 29 “[D]as Volk ungeachtet seiner Gliederung aus Ständen doch eine nationale und staatsbürgerliche Einheit ist.” (quoted in Podlech 1978, 541). 30 ”Der Fürst repräsentiert den Staat, die ethische Ordnung, die über den Menschen bestehen soll, also die Nation in ihrem Beruf, solche Ordnung zu handhaben. Die Stände repräsentieren das Volk, d.i. die Nation in ihrem Berufe, dieser Ordnung zu gehorhen, die Menschen in ihren mannigfachen socialen Stellungen, wie sie der Staatslenkung unterworfen sind und die Staatslenkung föderlich über sich empfinden.” (quoted in Podlech 1978, 541). 31 For Bluntschli: ”Im Vergleich mit dem Volk ist also die Nation ein Natur- oder ein allgemeiner Kulturbegriff, das Volk aber ein Staatsbegriff” (quoted in Koselleck 1992, 388).

98 parliaments. Political parties had been emerging since the 1830s, and the issue of a united nation-state, while being still an oppositional idea, had become ever more important in German political life. Especially the so-called high conservatives in Prussia kept their distance from the national goal. On the other hand, ”liberals” and ”democrats” began to take different paths over the question: who should be excluded from political citizenship within the nation? (Schönemann 1992, 347-348, 354, 361-362). 32

5.5 Prominent “liberal” reflections on “representation” and “nation” in the nineteenth century 5.5.1 Modern liberty, property and capacities, and the separation of powers: Benjamin Constant and François Guizot The French Revolution was almost always one of the background references in political writings during the nineteenth century in Europe. One had to ponder the questions of how to deal with the idea of the sovereignty of the people on the one hand, and how to deal with the experiences of terror and Napoleonic despotism on the other. In other words, how to avoid extremes in political order? As mentioned above, the understanding of “national” was to a great extent influenced by the revolutionary and Napoleonic ideas end experiences. Moreover, the Jacobin radicalisation of ”democracy” made it necessary for most of the theorists of politics to distinguish ”democracy” from ”liberalism” (Dippel 1986, 95-96). If “democracy” was positively evaluated, it was understood in terms of political representation. Consequently, nineteenth-century “liberalism” was in general more or less synonymous to the idea of representative democracy (e.g. Christensen 1997, 42). Montesquieu’s idea of the separation of powers together with the English parliamentary system were desirous patterns for those who did not long for the ancien régime style of political order. In addition, the idea of a modern commercial society, with its principle of the division of labour, was considered more relevant than ever. Benjamin Constant, one of the few continental thinkers who has been counted among the fathers of modern Western liberalism (Fontana 1988, 1), was amongst the first trying to deal with the consequences of the revolution. Constant had been, like other progressive-minded observers, a hesitant supporter of the revolution, but, like so many others, he was deeply disappointed and horrified by the violence the revolution had generated. For him, the unlimited sovereignty and unity of ”the nation” had been the reason of this disaster, and these reasons were to be eliminated in the future (Fehrenbach 1986, 104-105). He did not call for any sort of aristocratic rule, and he attacked Napoleon’s military regime and was therefore 32

German liberals were divided between national liberals, who supported the government, and oppositional leftist liberals in 1866 (Schönemann 1992, 369).

99 exiled from France between 1802 and 1814. Nonetheless, he was willing to assist the emperor as a constitutional adviser during the hundred days of Napoleon’s restay in power. Constant was charged with the drafting of the Acte additionnel aux constitutions de l’empire (1815) which is also known as the ”Benjamine” constitution. 33 It was followed the same year by the Principes de politique (Principles of Politics Applicable to All Representative Governments) which was a theoretical explanation of the constitution and a proposal for its further improvement. (Fontana 1988, 1-14). 34 There was a link between “the nation” and “representation” in Constant’s thought. In Principles, he associated free elections with the concept of “nation”. ”A nation” was thus understood as a political concept: [I]f we are a nation, if we have free elections… [I]f, on the other hand, we were not a nation, if we were incapable of having free elections[.] (Constant 1988, 238).

Despite his negative evaluation of the French Revolution, Constant viewed one positive consequence of the revolution, namely that the Frenchmen were able to enjoy the benefits of representative government (Constant 1988, 309). For Constant, the representative system was the modern solution to the problem of political liberty. The renewal of the representative assemblies had, in accordance with Constant, the advantage of ”preventing the representatives of the nation from forming a class apart, separated from the rest of the people” (Constant 1988, 209). Moreover, eventual changes in public opinion would then be taken into account more successfully by the representative body (ibid.). It was not only the revolutionary experiences but also the needs of a new commercial age that demanded the stability of political agency and political institutions. 35 He elaborated a distinction between an ancient and a modern liberty, which distinction was known to him from Montesquieu as well as from Hume, and which he presented in his speech at the Athénee Royal in Paris in 1819 (Fontana 1988, 18, 307-308). The division was between small-scale city states and large modern societies; between public affairs and political life, on the one hand, and production of material wealth and civil liberties, on the other hand. Consequently, it was the difference between direct participation in political decisions and representative institutions of political system. (Constant 1988, 309328; see also Fontana 1988, 18-20). As he mentioned already in Principles, modern societies needed political representation: It is representative assemblies alone that can infuse life into the political body. (Constant 1988, 197). 36 33

The constitution was never implemented. After the Bourbons returning to power in 1815, Constant was forced to leave the country for England in January 1816 and live in exile again. He returned the next year and devoted himself to writing while at the same time he played a leading role in the opposition against the reactionary Bourbon rule. (see Fontana 1988, 13-14). 35 Constant had spent two years in Edinburgh in the early 1780s and he was familiar with the Scottish political economy, sharing its basic ideas (Fontana 1988, 15-17). 36 ”Undoubtedly no liberty can exist in a large country without strong, numerous and 34

100 There were, however, difficulties with the principle of political representation. Constant referred to the problem of representatives being either delegates with an imperative mandate or independent representatives without any control of the electors. Because political representation could not be avoided in modern politics, there must therefore be a system of checks and counter-checks, which included the balance of constitutional powers, the responsibility of the ministers,37 the openness of procedures, the decentralisation of administrative decisions, and liberty of opinion. 38 In order to avoid the shortcomings of delegated power, there were to be a range of choices and opportunities available outside the institutionalised political life. In this respect, education and lively public debates, within the press and political parties, were needed. (Constant 1988, 227-242, 251-255, 272-295; see also Fontana 1988, 21-24). Institutional representative political systems and public opinion should be connected in order to be able to keep in step with the natural development of the civil society. It was important to keep alive the need for participation among the citizens of modern political communities. (Fontana 1988, 36, 40). The conflict between ancient and modern liberty must be resolved by combining the two (Constant 1988, 327). Constant agreed with Sieyès, for whom he felt little personal sympathy, that political representation was an outcome of the division of labour in commercial societies: 39 The representative system is nothing but an organization by means of which a nation charges a few individuals to do what it cannot or does not wish to do herself. Poor men look after their own business; rich men hire stewards. This is the history of ancient and modern nations. The representative system is a proxy given to a certain number of men by the mass of people who wish their interests to be defended and who nevertheless do not have the time to defend them themselves. (Constant 1988, 325-326).

Both Sieyès and Constant rejected the traditional values of aristocratic liberty and viewed property as a criterion of franchise. An important difference between them was that Constant never wanted to create any undivided body of representation which would have a sovereign power. In other words, he favoured bicameral representation and took his inspiration from the British constitution. (Fontana 1988, 23). The separation of powers within a parliament and between the legislative body and the executive was Constant’s main concern in his constitutional design. During the revolution, the fatal mistake had been that the legislative, the executive, and the judicial power were all combined within the Assembly, and thus it had become abnormally strong and totally independent independent assemblies.” (Constant 1988, 194). 37 Constant meant here the judicial responsibility of ministers, not the political responsibility. However, he maintained that a minister should enjoy a majority in the representative assembly (Constant 1988, 242-244). 38 Constant had a critical attitude towards mediocrity, an attitude which resembles the one that later came to be developed as a warning against the rule of opinion by Tocqueville and John Stuart Mill (Constant 1988, 208). 39 Both Sieyès and Constant are here indebted to Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (Fontana 1988, 23).

101 from any other force within French society.40 Accordingly, Constant argued against Rousseauan understanding of sovereignty and general will (Constant 1988, 179). 41 Accordingly, the power of the representative assembly must be limited: When no limits are imposed upon the representative authority, the people’s representatives are no longer the defenders of liberty, but rather candidates for tyranny: and once tyranny is constituted, it is likely to prove all the more terrible when tyrants are more numerous. Under a constitution which includes national representation, the nation is free only when its deputies are subject to restraint. (Constant 1988, 195). 42

Also, he maintained that there must be a limiting power outside the representative assembly: Thus the representative assemblies must be free, imposing and lively. But their vagaries must be repressed. Thus the repressive power must be placed outside them. (Constant 1988, 197).

Constant’s model was a monarchy, in which the power of the sovereign was limited (Constant 1988, 191). The executive would be granted the right of veto and the authority to dissolve the parliament. The legislative power was divided between the two chambers. The upper chamber was a hereditary one, and the number of its members was not to be limited, so as to allow for new members and thus social mobility. The hereditary chamber was important in keeping the nobility in active public service and in maintaining social stability. (ibid. 198, 200). The membership in the lower chamber would be based on free and direct popular elections instead of the model of the revolutionary elections which were held in two stages. The franchise was based on property. The chamber was to be totally renewed at each election and the representatives were not to be bound by any imperative mandate. (see Fontana 1988, 38-39). The stability of political life, which was Constant’s main point, was guaranteed by the upper chamber, and therefore there would be no danger should the lower chamber undergo a total renewal (Constant 1988, 209). 43 Following Monetsquieu’s thought, Constant held that the independence of the judicial power was an essential part of the whole constitutional design. (Constant 1988, 184-185; see also Fontana 1988, 38-39). Constant has been regarded as one of the main inventors and supporters of a property based census system in parliamentary elections. According to him, property qualifications served as a criterion to other qualities: 40

Even Sieyès had tried to take back the consequences of his own creation in the coup of Brumaire when he – in vain – attempted to regain control over the Assembly through the creation of a strong executive. (Fontana 1988, 37). 41 He acknowledged, though, that the revolution was not so much a consequence of Rousseau’s error, but of his successors (Constant 1988, 318). 42 Cf.: ”No authority upon earth is unlimited, neither that of the people, nor that of the men who declare themselves their representatives, nor that of the kings, by whatever title they reign, nor, finally, that of the law, which, being merely the expression of the will of the people or of the prince, according to the form of government, must be circumscribed within the same limits as the authority from which it emanates.” (Constant 1988, 180). 43 Total renewal is total only in principle. Constant views the possibility of re-election positively (see Constant 1988, 210).

102 I am not in favour of strong property qualifications for the exercise of public functions. Independence is in fact relative: as soon as a man has what is necessary, he needs only an elevated soul to do without the superfluous. However, it is desirable that representative offices should generally be occupied by men, if not from wealthy classes at least in easy circumstances. Their starting point is more advantageous, their education more polished, their spirit freer, their intelligence better prepared for enlightenment. Poverty has its prejudices like ignorance. (Constant 1988, 212). 44

The poor and labouring classes were excluded from the franchise. Constant maintained that ”those who are kept by poverty in eternal dependence, and who are condemned by it to daily labour, are neither more knowledgeable than children about public affairs” (Constant 1988, 214). This is not to say that labouring classes would be less patriotic than the others, however. It is merely a question of different kinds of patriotism, namely between the readiness and willingness to die for one’s country, on the one hand, and the understanding of the interests of one’s country (ibid.). Property holders were, thanks to the leisure they had, capable of understanding and judging political matters. In fact, they were ”simply the distributors of the common riches amongst all individuals, and that is to the advantage of all” (ibid.). In other words: In all those countries which have representative assemblies it is essential that those assemblies, whatever their further organization, should be formed by property holders. A single individual, through his striking merit, may captivate the crowd; but political bodies, to sustain confidence in them, need to have interests which are clearly in accordance with their duties. A nation always expects that men grouped together will be guided by their own interests. (Constant 1988, 215).

Those without property, however well-meaning they might be as legislators, would be suspected and disobeyed by property holders, for they lacked the grade of independence that was needed. (ibid. 216). According to Constant, a landed property was the most important and best criterion of qualification of political citizenship. He did accept wealthy industrialists, artisans, and intellectuals as political citizens, but only on the condition that their wealth was realised in the form of landed property (ibid.). A landed property was better suited for the criterion than industrial property, for it was a sign of conservative spirit which was necessary for political associations. A cultivator, argued Constant, had the right character. Moreover, a farmer was independent of men, he had a calm disposition, a feeling of security, and a spirit of order. The stabilising effect of landed property was due to patriotism the piece of own land produced: A farm is a fatherland in miniature. One is born there, raised there, brought up with the trees that surround it. In industrial property, nothing speaks to the imagination, to memory, to the moral part of man. […] Land binds man to the country where he lives, surrounds his departure from it with obstacles, creates patriotism through interest. (Constant 1988, 218). 44 Constant stated an opinion on a salary of the representatives: “In a constitution where the property-less have no political rights, the absence of any salary for representatives of the nation seems to me natural. Would it not be an outrageous and ridiculous contradiction to exclude the poor from national representation, as if the rich only had the right to represent him, and to make him pay for his representatives as if they were poor?” (Constant 1988, 212).

103 Industrial property was more artificial and less immutable than landed property. The problem was the uncertainty of industrial property. (ibid. 217). 45 However, this problem could be sidestepped, for in practise almost all industrialists were in fact also landowners. Besides, an industrial property offered great advantages, as well. Industry and commerce were means of defence of liberty. While landed property was the guarantee of stability of institutions, industrial property was the protection of individual independence (ibid. 219). Constant, no doubt, had in his mind the experiences of the Revolution when he wrote that artisans, living in the towns, were more vulnerable to factions and turbulent political ideas than farmers who lived separately in the countryside (Constant 1988, 218). Intellectual property, as well, had its political risks as the revolution had clearly proved. Thus, ”the liberal professions require, possibly more than any other, to be connected with property, if their influence upon political discussion is not to prove destructive” (ibid. 220). Although Constant viewed owning property as a sign of intellectual and independent capacities, he can be counted as an adherent of the idea of citoyen propriétaire rather than citoyen capacitaire. He was critical towards François Guizot’s and other doctrinaires’ view on the primacy of intellectual capacity as a criterion of a right to vote. He maintained that the idea of intellectual capacity would lead to an enlightened absolutism in its modern version (Christensen 1997, 52). As noted above, Constant was worried about the lack of moderation among intellectuals who did not own any real properties. Guizot developed the idea of a political citizen who had capacities due to his education. An intellectual elite was set against irrational and uneducated masses as a guarantee of the liberality and stability of a political system. According to him, universal suffrage was possible, though only in countries which were small or new enough to have a high standard of education and political capacity. (see Christensen 1997, 51-52). A general interest would be protected by the most knowledgeable and enlightened members of society. Only the best minds should be associated with the governance. (see Crossley 1993, 74). This view on political citizenship was based on political capacities rather than social status of men (sic). However, the sign of the supposed intellectual capacities was, again, property (Christensen 1997, 52). Accordingly, the combination of capacity and property was a standard solution of the liberals of the first half of the nineteenth century. Despite the differences in emphasises, economic wealth was often the criterion of membership in political citizenship. Yet, Constant was more cautious of the political rights of educated middle class people without property than Guizot. It was, perhaps, easier for Guizot and other doctrinaires to view “democracy” as acceptable in a social meaning than for Constant, and still argue against an 45

Constant explained: ”Its achievements are more rapid, but chance plays a much greater part in them. Industrial property does not have as a necessary component that slow, safe progress which creates the habit, and soon the need for uniformity. It does not make a man independent of other men. On the contrary, it places him in their dependence. Vanity, that fertile seed of political ferments, is frequently wounded in the industrialist almost never in the farmer.” (Constant 1988, 217).

104 extension of political rights. More than Constant, Guizot has been regarded as a theorist of the separation of powers. He, too, was concerned about the excesses of the French Revolution and tried to secure that stable politics, which he viewed as liberal, against both radicalism and ultra-conservatism (Crossley 1993, 71-72). He supported the idea of representative government and held that the idea of popular sovereignty was a dangerous doctrine. Political power should not be uncontrolled and unlimited. There should be a separation of powers between the King and the legislative body, on the one hand, and between the chambers within parliament on the other. There should always be a balancing counter-power to each political power within a state (e.g. Guizot 1849, 29, 77; Guizot 1886, 247). As will be shown later in this study, this idea of Guizot was applied by De Geer in the Swedish debates on the reform in the 1860s.

5.5.2 Against the tyranny of majority: Alexis de Tocqueville In his political thought, Alexis de Tocqueville, too, devoted himself to the legacy of the French Revolution. While Constant had his eyes on the British parliamentary system, like Montesquieu in the eighteenth century, Tocqueville dealt with the French problems through his analysis on the democracy in America. In short, he was trying to answer the question why the French Revolution had led to the Terror and Napoleonic counter-revolution, while the American revolution seemed to have brought forth liberal democracy. In other words, what was so special about the political life in the United States? A short answer Tocqueville gave in his eloquent books De la Démocratie en Amérique (Democracy in America) (1835, 1840) is that the Americans had arrived at the state of democracy without having to experience a democratic revolution (Tocqueville 1998, 209). It is commonly maintained that his analysis on popular opinion and mass democracy, which he viewed both as inevitable and problematic, was a new opening in political literature.46 Tocqueville understood the progress of democracy as inevitable. It had happened in America and it would happen also in the Old World. Once the first steps were taken there was no way to stop the process of the extension of the suffrage, for ” the further electoral rights are extended, the greater is the need of extending them; for after each concession the strength of the democracy increases, and its demands increase with its strength” (Tocqueville 1998, 32). 47 Tocqueville’s De la Démocratie en Amérique served as a persistent point of 46 Tocqueville wrote, for example, “In my opinion, the main evil of the present democratic institutions of the United States does not arise, as is often asserted in Europe, from their weakness but from their irresistible strength. I am not so much alarmed at the excessive liberty which reigns in that country as at the inadequate securities which one finds there against tyranny.” (Tocqueville 1998, 101). 47 The American electorate grew sevenfold between 1824 and 1840, and this was, of course, one of the background facts which convinced Tocqueville of the development of democracy. Women were, however, not included in his description of the extension of the franchise. (see Renshaw 1998, XVII-XXI).

105 reference in European political discussions on representative bicameral system. He described the bicameral system in which the both chambers were equal in power and based on popular elections. This part of his analysis was often referred in Swedish debates on parliamentary reform in the middle of the nineteenth century. Moreover, De la Démocratie en Amérique was one of the inspiring examples in mid-Victorian liberalism, “ensuring that democracy was seen in terms of manners as well as constitutions, and that the force of egalitarian public opinion would be seen as a central feature” (Burrow 1988, 46). To view democracy in terms of manners, and thus as a social state of affairs, can be linked with the doctrinaires’ idea of democracy as equal social prerequisites, instead of political rights. As a matter of fact, Tocqueville’s critique against the tyranny of the majority in popular democracy can be considered as resembling the doctrinaires’ elitist view on politics (see Christensen 1997, 53). According to Tocqueville, the problem in France had been that all the political systems during his own age had been based on the idea of ”the unity, the ubiquity, the omnipotence of the supreme power, and the uniformity of its rules” (Tocqueville 1998, 345). One sign of this was, for example, that a democratic nation, such as revolutionary France, was characterised by the absence of intermediate powers (ibid. 351). Like Sieyès and Constant, for example, Tocqueville viewed the need of representation as essentially grounded in the division of labour principle. The men of democratic countries, Tocqueville argued, “can never, without an effort, tear themselves from their private affairs to engage in public business”. Therefore, a “sole and permanent” representation is needed. (ibid. 347). For Tocqueville, ”the electoral system brings a multitude of citizens permanently together who would otherwise always have remained unknown to one another” (Tocqueville 1998, 211). Representation was the means of bringing individuals together. It can be understood as the means of balancing different and conflicting opinions, as Pitkin interprets the American representative system (see Pitkin 1989, 145-146; Pitkin 1967, 191-195). Tocqueville held that political representation was needed, but not an ideal solution. It was rather the best alternative available in modern democracies (Tocqueville 1998, 359-362). It was better to have a democratic despotism than an aristocratic rule or an absolutist monarchy, for it was, nonetheless, the people at large to whom every man was submitted: Every man allows himself to be put in leading-strings, because he sees that it is not a person or a class of persons, but the people at large who hold the end of his chain. (Tocqueville 1998, 359). [I] can understand that when the sovereign represents the nation and is dependent upon the people, the rights and the power of which every citizen is deprived serve not only the head of the state, but the state itself; and that private persons derive some return from the sacrifice of their independence which they have made to the public. To create a representation of the people in every centralised country is therefore, to diminish the evil that extreme centralisation may produce, but not to get rid of it. (Tocqueville 1998, 360).

Tocqueville was far from an over-enthusiastic admirer of representative political

106 system. His scepticism was articulated in somewhat Rousseauan manner, when he remarked that it was only during elections the people were free to act politically for themselves: By this system the people shake off their state of dependence just long enough to select their master and then relapse into it again. A great many persons at the present day are quite contended with this sort of compromise between administrative despotism and the sovereignty of the people: and they think they have done enough for the protection of individual freedom when they have surrendered it to the power of the nation at large. This does not satisfy me[.] (Tocqueville 1998, 359-360). 48

Therefore, it was of utmost importance that elections were held regularly and often enough, as was done in America. 49 An important point is that both chambers of the representation were based on the same classes of people, so that there were not any conservative elements in this bicameral system. As mentioned in the third chapter of this study, this point has been interpreted as a background to De Geer’s reform proposal in Sweden. Tocqueveille stated that: The Americans determined that the members of the legislature should be elected by the people directly, and for a very brief term, in order to subject them, not only to the general convictions, but even to the daily passions, of their constituents. The members of both houses are taken from the same classes in society and nominated in the same manner; so that the movements of the legislative bodies are almost as rapid, and quite as irresistible, as those of a single assembly. It is to a legislature thus constituted that almost all the authority of the government has been entrusted. (Tocqueville 1998, 98).

Tocqueville was worried about the concentration of power. To him, it was an even more serious problem in democratic systems than in monarchies. 50 His main concern, after all, was the liberty and private rights of an individual. 51 In order to limit the risks of representative democracy, there must exist free institutions, i.e. other channels for political activity than only political representation (ibid. 361). Temporarily composed “secondary public bodies”, such as free press and free associations, were necessary so that the liberty of private persons would prevail (ibid. 363). Associations and the press can be seen as sort of answers to the 48

”It is in vain to summon a people who have been rendered so dependent on the central power to choose from time to time the representatives of that power; this rare and brief exercise of their free choice, however important it may be, will not prevent them from gradually losing the faculties of thinking, feeling, and acting for themselves, and thus gradually falling below the level of humanity.” (Tocqueville 1998, 361). 49 We can note that Tocqueville is somewhat less pessimistic in this matter in the first volume, which came out in 1835, than in the second volume in 1840. “The first book is more American than democratic” and the second “is more democratic than American”, wrote Tocqueville in the introduction of the second volume (Renshaw 1998, XVI). 50 ”This never dying, ever kindling hatred which sets a democratic people against the smallest privileges is peculiarly favourable to the gradual concentration of all political rights in the hand of the representative of the state alone.” (Tocqueville 1998, 348-349). 51 His appeal to rulers is a cry for a real citizenship of man: ”I wish that they would never forget that a nation cannot long remain strong when every man belonging to it is individually weak; and that no form or combination of social polity has yet been devised to make an energetic people out of a community of pusillanimous and enfeebled citizens.” (Tocqueville 1998, 369).

107 shortcomings of the modern representative system. For Tocqueville, the press was the chief instrument of freedom: To protect their personal independence I do not trust to great political assemblies, to parliamentary privilege, or to the assertion of popular sovereignty. All these things may, to a certain extent, be reconciled with personal servitude. But that servitude cannot be complete if the press is free; the press is the chief democratic instrument of freedom. (Tocqueville 1998, 364-365).

Indeed, ”the sovereignty of the people and the liberty of the press may […] be regarded as correlative” (ibid. 78). Associations for political, commercial, literal, scientific, and manufacturing purposes were likewise important for saving the common liberties of the country (ibid. 364). In accordance with Tocqueville, there was a necessary connection between public associations and newspapers, for newspapers made associations and associations made newspapers (ibid. 221).

5.5.3 John Stuart Mill and representative government It has been argued that Mill’s essay Considerations on Representative Government (1861) does not offer much space to the explicit analysis of the concept of representation (Pitkin 1967, 4). However, Mill’s book is of the utmost importance because of its bringing together many of the main themes of modern politics in the middle of the nineteenth century. British parliamentary politics was the foremost example and model for political actors and theorists in other European countries during the nineteenth century. British debates on parliamentary reforms were followed with great interest by the reform-minded liberals outside Britain. For the contemporaries, the modern politics was developed and practised first of all in Britain. Mill dealt with the issue of the combination of political representation and the concept of nation. The sixteenth chapter of his Considerations on Representative Government (1861) John Stuart Mill opened with a sentence which probably most explicitly defines what is nationality: A portion of mankind may be said to constitute a Nationality, if they are united among themselves by common sympathies, which do not exist between them and any others – which make them co-operate with each other more willingly than with other people, desire to be under the same government, and desire that it should be governed by themselves or a portion of themselves, exclusively. (Mill 1991, 427)

This often quoted part has usually been taken as a political interpretation of the concept of “nation”, for Mill’s expression ”desire to be under the same government” placed the political criterion above eventual ethnical and cultural qualifications. Moreover, when Mill stated that ”it should be governed by themselves or a portion of themselves” we can find an example of radical political rhetoric of self-government which had its sources in radical Whig and civic humanistic political thought. This kind of republican rhetoric had become quite

108 outdated in British nineteenth-century political language. However, the tradition was not totally lost. Even if Quentin Skinner has maintained that the seventeenthand eighteenth-century neo-roman understanding of civil liberty not only lost its earlier position but even slipped from sight during the nineteenth century, he nevertheless has noted that political demands of the Chartists, and J. S. Mill’s view on suffrage, for example, contained some remainders of neo-roman priorities (Skinner 1998, ix-x). Mill’s association with republican political thought is obvious in his discussion on the ideal form of government. According to Mill, the sovereignty should be vested in the entire aggregate of the community: [T]he ideally best form of government is that in which the sovereignty, or supreme controlling power in the last resort, is vested in the entire aggregate of the community; every citizen not only having a voice in the exercise of that ultimate sovereignty, but being, at least occasionally, called on to take an actual part in the government, by the personal discharge of some public function, local or general. (Mill 1991, 244).

Moreover, Mill stated that the fully satisfactory government is the one in which ”the whole people participate” and in which there is ”the admission of all to a share in the sovereign power of the state” (ibid. 255-256). However, political representation was needed in practice: But since all cannot, in a community exceeding a single small town, participate personally in any but some very minor portions of the public business, it follows that the ideal type of a perfect government must be representative. (Mill 1991, 256).

Mill described the need of a representative system in a manner which is familiar from several considerations on the possibility of a large republic. According to him, there could be nothing like a regulated popular government beyond the bounds of a single city-community in the ancient world. In the modern world this ”obstacle is generally thought to have ceased by the adoption of the representative system” (ibid. 210). Political representation brings together better than other forms of political organisation the general standard of intelligence and honesty of the political community as well as individual intelligence and virtue of the wisest men (ibid. 228-229). However, there appears to be a sort of paradox in Mill’s formulation, for ”the general standard” and ”the wisest men” seem not to correspond to each other. This tension is the one we are likely to meet in all contemporary attempts to apply the principle of political representation together with democratic goals. As opposed to, for example, Guizot, Mill held that a balanced constitution is impossible, for there is in every constitution a strongest power. In England, it was the popular power. In a modern parliamentary government the representatives had ”the ultimate controlling power, which, in every constitution, must reside somewhere”. This controlling power was exercised through ”deputies” who were periodically elected by ”the whole people or some numerous portion of them”. This was the case in Britain, and he stated that ”the British Government is thus a representative government in the correct sense of the term”. (ibid. 269-270).

109 To Mill, the upper chamber was of secondary importance in a democracy. Nevertheless, if the people were willing to have one, there was nothing wrong with it. There was always a need of a centre of resistance to the predominant power in every polity, be it a party in opposition or the House of Lords. If there were two chambers, then it would be better to have the upper built on the grounds of personal merit, tested and guaranteed by actual public service. It would be the Chamber of Statesmen, consisting of the people’s ”natural leaders in the path of progress”. It was also possible to think that the Second Chamber would be elected by the First, though on the condition that they should not nominate any of their own members. Class interests and prejudices of the majority were to be repudiated yet a democratic feeling maintained. According to Mill, an aristocratic Second Chamber was powerful only in an aristocratic state of society. In the democratic ages, it could only be a moderator of democracy. (ibid. 384-391). This would suggest that there is room for societal reductionism in Mill’s political thought. There is a portion of truth, Mill argued, in claiming that a nation cannot choose its form of government, but depends on the distribution of power in society. Nevertheless, he actually tried to avoid a too clear commitment to the idea that the form of society determined the form of politics in the first chapter of his Representative Government. (Mill 1991, 205-216; cf. Burrow 1988, 22-24, 85). The duty of a popular assembly was to control the operations of government. In a popular constitution no executive functionaries, i.e. ministers, should be appointed by popular election. This meant that neither the people themselves nor their representatives were able to elect the ministers. It was enough that Parliament virtually decided who should be Prime Minister; in other words, which of the parties should furnish the executive government. (Mill 1991, 269-276, 398). Accordingly, the role and purpose of a representative assembly was not to govern but to deliberate, for ”what can be done better by a body than by any individual, is deliberation” (ibid. 272). A representative assembly composed the deliberative sense of the nation: Instead of the function of governing, for which it is radically unfit, the proper office of a representative assembly is to watch and control the government: to throw the light of publicity on its acts: to compel a full exposition and justification of all of them which any one considers questionable; to censure them if found condemnable, and, if the men who compose the government abuse their trust, or fulfil it in a manner which conflicts with the deliberate sense of the nation, to expel them from office, and either expressly or virtually appoint their successors. (Mill 1991, 282).

Mill’s defence of the deliberative role of Parliament can be interpreted as an important notion of the character of “talk” in modern politics. The representatives of Parliament were gathered together in order to talk as a nation, and representation made the talk possible in large modern nation-states. A representative body was ”an arena” in which each opinion in the nation ”can produce itself in full light” (quoted in Pitkin 1967, 63). It was like an agora in an ancient city-state. It can be noted that it was a common understanding in midVictorian England to view the House of Commons as a national theatre without any pejorative implications of politics being only a play (Collini 1998, 34). Unlike

110 Pitkin's understanding, the deliberative role of a representative assembly does not necessary mean passivity, even if the right to govern is reserved for a government (cf. Pitkin 1967, 63-64). Mill understood talk as an activity, and in itself a valuable dimension of politics. In accordance with Mill: Representative assemblies are often taunted by their enemies with being places of mere talk and bavardage. There has seldom been more misplaced derision. I know not how a representative assembly can more usefully employ itself than talk, when the subject of talk is the great public interests of the country, and every sentence of it represents the opinion either of some important body of persons in the nation, or of an individual in whom some such body have reposed their confidence. (Mill 1991, 283).

As Mill’s defence of the deliberative character of Parliament presupposes, he was against any imperative mandate. The representatives were to deliberate independently. His trust in the intellectual superiority of the representatives was clearly outspoken: If it is important that the electors should choose a representative more highly instructed than themselves, it is no less necessary that this wiser man should be responsible to them; in other words, they are the judges of the manner in which he fulfils his trust: and how are they to judge, except by the standard of their own opinions? (ibid. 376).

Like Tocqueville, Mill was concerned about a low grade of intelligence and tyranny of the majority in a democratic polity. He wrote, that ”[t]he natural tendency of representative government, as of modern civilisation, is towards collective mediocrity” (ibid. 313). Unlike in theories on citoyen capacitaire, the key to this problem was not, however, a more restricted suffrage (ibid. 302). The progress of democracy was for Mill an unavoidable fact and he welcomed it, unlike Tocqueville, as something that is favourable and morally right. He stated that ”[t]here ought to be no pariahs in a full-grown and civilised nation; no persons disqualified, except through their own default” (ibid. 329). Yet, Mill was not in favour of full democracy. Rather, he tried to expand “the political nation” beyond its existing boundaries, but at the same time drew certain limits (Hall et al. 2000, 63-67). For Mill, a government of privilege meant the dominance of the majority, not the dominance of a privileged minority. His definition of the problem was thus different from a common understanding of his time. According to him, the numbers were already there. Therefore it was important to secure the voice of the minorities, for ”though the superior intellects and characters will necessarily be outnumbered, it makes a great difference whether or not they are heard” (Mill 1991, 313). 52 He wanted to fight against ”the complete disfranchisement of minorities” (ibid. 303). That is why he favoured a proportional system of elections following Thomas Hare (see Hall et al. 2000, 67). 53 52

”In the false democracy which, instead of giving representation to all, gives it only to the local majorities, the voice of the instructed minority may have no organs at all in the representative body.” (Mill 1991, 313). 53 In accordance with the proportionalists, the traditional territorial basis for the franchise

111 Mill is famous of being the foremost champion of universal suffrage in his time. His universalism included also the other half of the population, and we know him as one of the leading advocates of women’s suffrage (Mill 1991, 341). The point of departure was that ”[n]o arrangement of the suffrage […] can be permanently satisfactory; in which the electoral privilege is not open to all persons of full age who desire to obtain it.” (ibid. 329). Manual labourers were accepted as potential voters, if the mental cultivation of the mass of mankind was not a mere vision (ibid. 327). Mill’s inclusive viewpoint met difficulties in dealing with uneducated masses, and he shared the familiar middle-class view that some exclusionary demarcations were needed in order to guarantee a peaceful progress of a political community. These demarcations did not conflict with the universal principle, argued Mill. For him, it must be a condition of the suffrage that a person is able to read, write, and perform the common operations of arithmetic. In addition, ”some knowledge of the conformation of the earth, its natural and political divisions, the elements of general history, and of the history and institutions of their country, could be required from all electors”. Consequently, ”universal teaching must precede universal enfranchisement”. Moreover, a person must pay taxes in order to be allowed for a vote. Mill included also indirect taxes and argued that there was probably no labouring family which did not contribute to the indirect taxes. Another condition of the franchise was that a person was not living on a parish relief and that s/he could support herself/himself. (ibid. 330-333). Instead of employing the principle of census, although every voter should pay taxes, Mill developed a meritocratic system of graduated suffrage. He argued that ”though every one ought to have a voice – that every one should have an equal voice is a totally different proposition” (ibid. 334). The more potential voice was granted for those who had a ”greater capacity for the management of the joint interests”. (ibid. 335). In other words: The only thing which can justify reckoning one person’s opinion as equivalent to more than one, is individual mental superiority[.] (Mill 1991, 336).

For Mill, the plurality of votes was not to be carried so far that it would outweigh all the rest of the political community. If there were a properly functioning national education with general examination, the graduated suffrage would not be needed. He argued also that an equal universal suffrage would be possible if there were a real proportional representation. Actually, Mill used the inevitability of the was no longer appropriate. Substantial interests and opinions went unrepresented if they were geographically widely spread. The multiplicity of interests and opinions was to be collected in a new way by incorporating them into electorates. (see Burrow 1988, 139). Securing the representation of minorities through proportional elections is a sort of corresponding view on representation. It assumes that the whole is ’mirrored’ or ’mapped’. This implies, in turn, that the role of a representative body is not so much to act, but rather to ’stand for’. It has also been argued that the proportional system atomises opinion and prevents the formation of a stable majority. It seems that the representative body which is proportionally mirroring and deliberating, is set against the one that is acting, not controlling the government but governing. This was, in short, Bagehot’s reply to Mill, when he stressed Parliament’s task of selecting and supporting a government. (Pitkin 1967, 60-65).

112 equal universal suffrage as a rhetorical means to persuade that plural voting with universal suffrage was needed, as the best alternative for those who were worried about the consequences of egalitarian representative democracy. (ibid. 337-339). Following, for example, his Utilitarian predecessors, Mill argued for regular elections and for the possibility of a government to dissolve Parliament and arrange new elections, for it was essential that ”the general sense of the House should accord in the main with that of the nation”. (ibid. 371-372). In such case, the representative government would be associated with “patriotism” (Hall et al. 2000, 68).



6.1 Revolutionary constitution as a ‘year zero’ The radical combination of “the sovereignty of the people”, “representation” and “nation”, i.e. the view that political representation as a sovereign political institution creates the nation, has been a topic in political discussions on the role and character of constitutions ever since the American and French revolutions. In short, the question has been whether a political system and its institutions should develop gradually and according to a tradition or whether there is a possibility and grounds for an abrupt change. In other words, the issue deals with different views on temporal dimensions of political change, with different views on the roles of the past, the present, and the future in political change. Although the idea of constitution and the term ”constitution” were of earlier origin, one of the differences between the early seventeenth and the late eighteenth century discourses, in general, was a new notion of constitution as a basic law. It was written, above the procedures of ordinary legislation, and amendable only in a specified way. Together with the notion of constitution, another new element was the notion of the pouvoir constituant as the fundamental and final authority which stood behind all positive institutions. (Lagerspetz 1997, 120; Maddox 1989, 50). In short, feudal and absolutist notions of basic law were traditional and, to a large extent, static. They were more or less immutable unwritten principles to which written laws must conform. In a corporative community of Estates, corporative rights were at once public and civil, and basic laws dealt with civil rights as well as public laws. For example, the fundamental laws in France during the ancien régime consisted of the basic principles of the royal administration, on the one hand, and of the corporative privileges on the other.

114 The revolutionary notion of constitution, in turn, was non-traditionalistic and positive in its character. In accordance with the notions of natural law and contract theory, there had been an increasing stress on the fundamental legality of the social contract. This led finally to the revolutionary and uniform notion of constitution. (Jussila 1969, 265). 1 As mentioned in the previous chapter of this study, Sieyès’ statement that the nation is ”a body of associates living under common laws and represented by the same legislative assembly” suggests that common laws and political representation were prerequisites of the nation (Sieyès 1963, 58). Thus, Sieyès’ innovation can be seen as a sort of ‘year zero’, as the constitutive event in which there is no need to worry about the burden of history, as the legitimacy of the General Estates was ruled out (Fehrenbach 1986, 93; Sewell, Jr. 1994, 47). 2 He wrote, moreover, that the constitution is the new beginning and that the constitution itself is created by the nation: If we have no constitution, it must be made, and only the nation has the right to make it. (Sieyès 1963, 119).

The nation, in turn, had only natural law prior to it: The nation is prior to everything. It is the source of everything. Its will is always legal; indeed it is the law itself. Prior to and above the nation, there is only natural law. (Sieyès 1963, 124).

However, and contrary to my suggestion, it seems that Sieyès rejected the idea that the constitutive act of the legislative assembly creates the nation. ”The nation” was already there. It is actually possible to view his statement on the priority of the nation in the light of a rhetorical strategy, in which it is important to try to show that the new beginning actually was based on something natural

1 The concept of constitution has in general been applied in the meaning of balancing and limiting public political powers. As a political concept constitutio appeared in the writings of Cicero in a meaning of gathering up past experience, i.e. Greek political thought. Constitutio was a description of the Greek politeia. Added with some Latin connotations, Cicero’s ”constitution” became to mean ”moderate and balanced form of government”. It was a republican concept and referred to institutional arrangements that would ensure stability, freedom, and justice. The term ”constitution” lost its republican connotation during the time of emperors who used it in their own ends. In was only in the 16th and 17th centuries the term got back its Ciceroan content. (Maddox 1989, 50-55). The idea of contract had entered modern constitutional thought as the inheritance of readers of the Old Testament. The idea of covenant was developed by Calvin and the Puritans, and a secular expression of it can be found in the writings of Hobbes and Locke. Alongside this, there was also a tradition of feudal law which has also been viewed as having been the core of modern constitutionalism. It is then the question of a consent between the king and his subjects, often understood as a contractual regulation of the relationship between the king and the Estates. It was presumed that there were mutual obligations and that the vassal’s opinion was to be valued. A modern understanding of constitution as the composition of the political community emerged in the 16th century, and by 1703 Locke was referring to the ”English constitution” in the modern sense. (Maddox 1989, 55-59; Back 1980, 9-10). 2 Hegel maintained that for the first time in history man had “stood on his head, i.e., on his ideas, and shaped reality to fit them” (quoted in Wells 1959, 191).

115 and already there. This natural ground then allowed for radical positive acts. 3 It seems that there is a sort of cyclical connection between two views on ”nation” and ”representation” in this reasoning. On the one hand, Sieyés seemed to support the idea that could be called nation-by-representation. On the other hand, he returned to a view that could be called representation-bynation. Consequently, the constitutive and legitimising aspects of nation were mixed with each other, as they so often are in the rhetoric of ”nation”. Some seventy years later, the same inner tension in the rhetoric of nation can be found in John Stuart Mill’s Considerations on Representative Government, in which he argued for a voluntaristic notion of “nationality” (Mill 1991, 427). When he combined “nationality” with the “desire to be under the same government” and the desire to “be governed by themselves”, it might be understood that there would possibly be a kind of “year zero” in which history begins anew. Moreover, Mill held that, for example, ethnicity, language, geography, and religion were of lesser significance than political institutions (ibid.). However, Mill seems to have taken the priority of nationality in comparison to political institutions as given. In a somewhat paradoxical way – and in line with Sieyès – he argued, on the one hand, that a nationality was constituted through a desire to live under the same government, and, on the other hand, that ”where the sentiment of nationality exists in any force, there is a prima facie case for uniting all the members of the nationality under the same government” (ibid. 428). Moreover, he maintained that ”one hardly knows what any division of the human race should be free to do, if not to determine, with which of the various collective bodies of human beings they choose to associate themselves” (ibid.). While at the same time he continued with noting that ”free institutions are next to impossible in a country made up of different nationalities” (ibid.). There is then a possibility to interpret that a voluntary act constitutes a nationality, but then again, it is also possible to think that ”the sentiment of nationality” is a condition for uniting all the members under the same government. 4 To sum up, it seems that there must first be nationalities which make it possible to create political institutions. Mill wrote: 3

According to Sieyès, there are two kinds or representatives: ordinary and extraordinary ones. The latter ones are those who decide upon the new constitution. For Sieyès: “The ordinary representatives of a nation are charged with the exercise, under the constitution, of that portion of common will which is necessary to maintain a good social administration. Their power is confined to governmental affairs. Extraordinary representatives will have whatever new powers the nation chooses to give them. Since a large nation cannot physically assemble when extraordinary circumstances make this necessary, it must entrust extraordinary representatives with the necessary power on such occasions. […] [T]hese representatives are appointed as deputies for just one purpose, and only for a limited time. I maintain that they are not bound by the constitutional forms on which they have to decide. […] They are a substitute for the whole nation in the course of framing its constitution.” (Sieyès 1963, 130-131). 4 It has been argued that in his A System of Logic (1843) Mill spoke of ”national character” in two different senses. In the first place, ”national character” was as an end of legislation and social reform, as an outcome of political deeds. In the second place, there were different ”national characters” which legislators should take into account. (see Varouxakis 1998, 376). This notion suits well to my interpretation that Mill mixed together a voluntaristic and a primordial understandings of nationality.


[I]t is in general a necessary condition of free institutions, that the boundaries of governments should coincide in the main with those of nationalities. (Mill 1991, 430). 5

A year later, in 1862, Baron Acton rejected in his essay Nationality Mill’s view of nationality as a residue of the French Revolution (Acton 1919, 287; see also Anderson 1996, 3). He attacked both the voluntaristic and the ethnic aspects of nationality. In other words, he accepted neither the view that people are free to choose their associates, nor that the boundaries of governments should coincide with nationalities. To him, the former view was involved in the democratic theory of the sovereignty of the general will, the latter was a consequence of the former and an unwelcome misunderstanding of the priority of ”the nation” over ”the state”. Acton was especially worried about the unifying tendency of democracy and he argued for multinational and federative states instead of nation-states that were based on one supreme nationality. (Acton 1919, 272277). The mistake made in the French Revolution was that the French people was regarded as an ethnological and not historical unit. This led to the rejection of the past and the state: [T]here was a power supreme over the State, distinct from, and independent of, its members; and it expressed, for the first time in history, the notion of an abstract nationality. In this manner the idea of the sovereignty of the people, uncontrolled by the past, gave birth to the idea of nationality independent of the political influence of history. It sprang from the rejection of the two authorities, - of the State and of the past. (Acton 1919, 277-278).

Acton’s conclusion that the Revolution was a break with the past gives support to the view that the idea of a ’year zero’ was – even if criticised – considered alive in nineteenth-century political thought. Despite the blurred character of the rhetoric of ”nation” and constitutional change, i.e. that the concept of nation referred both to voluntaristic and primordial meanings, the idea of a constitutive national assembly implies a certain understanding of the new beginning of a political culture. The constitutive act can be taken as an attempt to make a conscious break with the past. This might suggest that political principles and theories have more room than interpretations on domestic tradition in a political culture.


”Among a people without fellow-feeling, especially if they read and speak different languages, the united public opinion, necessary to the working of representative government, cannot exist.” (Mill 1991, 428).


6.2 Traditionalism vs. natural rights of men: Edmund Burke vs. Thomas Paine One way to view the concept of representation and its relation to the concept of nation during and just after these two revolutions is to have a closer look how two famous and opposite interpreters of the French Revolution understood political representation and political change. Edmund Burke opposed the French Revolution although he had supported the American Revolution, as is commonly known. His opponent, Thomas Paine, was an eager supporter of both revolutions. With Burke and Paine, it is possible to illustrate two contemporary opposite understandings of a political change and a role of history within it. The controversy between Burke and Paine deals with the consequences of the ideas of the ancient constitution and the natural law in the political thought. Burke shared with Sieyès 6 the idea that the representative assembly, Parliament, represents neither any particular interests, nor the Estates, nor the people against the King, but instead the nation as a whole (Podlech 1984, 528). His speech to the electors in Bristol in 1774 is famous for its formulation of the deliberative character of Parliament and for its rejection of the imperative mandate. No wonder that Burke is usually referred to when the independence theory of representation is discussed: Parliament is not a congress of ambassadors from different and hostile interests, which interests each must maintain, as an agent and advocate, against other agents and advocates; but Parliament is a deliberative assembly of one nation, with one interest, that of the whole - where not local prejudices ought to guide, but the general good, resulting from the general reason of the whole. You choose a member, indeed; but when you have chosen him he is not a member of Bristol, but he is a member of Parliament. (quoted in Pitkin 1967, 171).

Burke’s maintenance that Parliament is a deliberative assembly of one nation, of the whole, is an argument which could be one of Sieyès’, as well. However, Burke was an explicit supporter of an elite representation, and he did not have anything like Rousseau’s general will in his mind. The general good, i.e. the general reason, was the result of deliberation of superior men of wisdom and ability, not of average or typical or popular men. Representation was a matter of reason, not of will, and the process of debate in Parliament was an essential element in the discovery of right answers to political questions. The right answers were to be found because political representation was about the representation of objective interests which were impersonal and unattached to reality. A truly elite group of representatives had no interests other than the national interests. These interests were mostly economic. Burke meant, for example, mercantile, agricultural, and professional interests. Thus, these 6

Perhaps we should say that Sieyès shared with Burke, for Burke formulated his views on representation earlier. For example, his speech in Bristol was held in 1774.

118 interests were not personal, but opinions were. The representative’s duty was to devote himself to his constituents’ interests rather than to their opinions. The objective interest of a constituency was different from the opinions of the people that composed it. The true interest of any group, or the nation, had an objective reality, and a well-informed and rational man, who had deliberated and discussed the matter, was the man most likely to know it. (see Pitkin 1967, 168-176). Accordingly, the national interest was the sum of the objective interests that composed the nation. The interests were discovered in Parliament through a debate. The discovery of the interests presupposed a participation of representatives of every interest so that all considerations would be brought to light in the debate. The deliberation was to result in consensus and agreement, not in a vote where the majority would have prevailed. Parliament was to deliberate until it found the answer, and the answer could be found. This is why the number of representatives from any particular place or interest did not matter. What was needed was that all the facts and arguments were presented in Parliamentary deliberation. (Pitkin 1967, 186-188). To Burke, deliberation was a matter of finding a right answer rather than deciding on the right answer. Crucial to Burke’s concept of representation was the division between actual and virtual representation. According to Burke, some parts of the nation were represented ”actually” or ”literally”, which meant that the constituencies elected one or more members to Parliament. However, a town or region that was not actually represented might be represented ”virtually” (Pitkin 1967, 173). ”Virtual” representation, on the other hand, meant that ”there is a communion of interests and sympathy in feelings and desires between those who act in the name of any description of people and the people in whose name they act, though the trustees are not actually chosen by them” (quoted in Podlech 1984, 528). Burke held that virtual representation must have a basis in the actual. It means that elections were necessary after all, but they were merely a means of finding the members of ”natural aristocracy”. Accordingly, Burke favoured a very restricted suffrage, and he actually meant that decreasing the number of voters would increase representation because it would add to the voter’s ”weight and independence”. An extension of suffrage was needed if there were serious, substantive grievances which were not met in Parliament. It was then proof that all the interests were not protected there. Burke argued that if the people persistently saw their interest differently from the members of Parliament, there must be something wrong in Parliament. Needless to say, Burke himself took the liberty to decide who had substantive grievances and who did not. (Pitkin 1967, 171, 178-181). An important difference between Burke’s and Sieyès’ view on representation is Burke’s rejection of personal representation. An introduction of manhood suffrage would make the member of Parliament represent the people of his district. He would then function as their agent and be subjected to their will. For Burke, the House of Commons ”is not, and never has been, representative of the people as a collection of individuals”. Accordingly, he thought of England as ”a collection not of individuals, but of associations or

119 interests”. Nevertheless, the House of Commons must ”express image of the feelings of the nation”. The representative needs to know the feelings of the people, and this is a further reason why the virtual representation must have a basis in the actual representation. (quotations in Pitkin 1967, 182-184). Burke’s distinction between objective interests and subjective opinions has its consequences in relation to time. Like so many times since, Burke’s conservative argument limited a temporalising aspect of a deliberative act, for ”the individual is foolish. The multitude, for the moment, is foolish, when they act without deliberation: but the species is wise, and, when time is given to it, as a species it always acts right” (quoted in Podlech 1984, 527). Moreover, Burke stated: ”I aim to look, indeed, to your opinions; but such opinions as you and I must have five years hence. I was not to look to the flash of a day.” (quoted in Pitkin 1967, 181). Parliament can, through rational deliberation and wise judgement, reach conclusions which the society could arrive at only indirectly and more slowly (ibid.). In other words, the deliberative act stops the temporal moment of the present; it reaches to the future by consulting with the past. This manner of rejecting ”the flash of a day” is a part of Burke’s understanding of political action and history in general. For Burke, there is a historical wisdom in political institutions, which means that one should not think of, for example, a constitution as a voluntary creation of the present people, as had just happened in France. Accordingly, conservative political thought has been influenced and inspired by Burke’s famous Reflections on the Revolution in France which was written in 1790 and which immediately condemned the events in France and the ideas of the revolutionaries. Instead of breaking with the past, the English constitution had shown its success over time and made the political representation ”perfectly adequate”: I shall only say here, in justice to that old-fashioned constitution under which we have long prospered, that our representation has been found perfectly adequate to all the purposes for which a representation of the people can be desired or devised. (Burke 1950, 61).

Burke’s view on representation goes in line with his understanding of political order which is not based on a social contract and the idea of natural rights, but instead, on a contract between generations, between those who have lived earlier and those who are yet to be born. (Burke 1950, 65, 106). 7 The relation between the present and the past was explained in terms of organic growth, which came to be a typical view on a philosophy of history especially in the early nineteenth century. Consequently, it was not right just to overthrow the political order and construct something totally new. 8 The idea was clearly expressed in 1782 when Burke argued against a reform of the representation by 7 ”Society is indeed a contract. […] [I]t becomes a partnership not only between those who are living, but between those who are living, those who are dead, and those who are to be born.” (Burke 1950, 106). 8 In the case of American revolution, the new order was a legitimate one because there had not been any established order before.

120 appealing to the historicity of the nation and the constitution in a motion in the House of Commons: Because a nation is not an idea only of local extent, and individual momentary aggregation; but it is an idea of continuity, which extends in time as well as in space. And this is a choice, not of one day, or one set of people, not a tumultuary and giddy choice; it is a deliberate election of ages and generations; it is a constitution made by what is ten thousand times better than choice, it is made by the peculiar circumstances, occasions, tempers, dispositions, and moral, civil and social habitudes of the people, which disclose themselves only in a long space of time. (quoted in Pocock 1973, 226).

The idea of the Ancient Constitution was behind Burke’s argument against a reform of the representation. The idea had been common in eighteenth-century England. The doctrine had received its formulation around the year 1600, and it was the work of common lawyers shaped by assumptions concerning the common law of England. These assumptions were that all the law was actually common law, and that common law was common custom interpreted and applied in the courts, and that all custom was immemorial. It was an elaborate body of myths. The laws and liberties were rooted in the Magna Carta and the Revolution of 1688 was just an adjustment, not any definite break, in this tradition. Instead of appealing to abstract principles, i.e. doctrines of contract, natural right and reason, Englishmen had always appealed to their own past. This led to a sort of sceptical and conservative empiricism in English political thought. (Pocock 1973, 207-215, 227). Thomas Paine’s Rights of Man (1790-1791) was a direct answer to Burke's Reflections, as is commonly known. First of all, Paine criticised Burke’s traditionalism and the idea of “governing beyond the grave”: There never did, there never will, and there never can, exist a Parliament, or any description of men, or any generation of men, in any country, possessed of the right or the power of binding and controlling posterity to the ‘end of time’, or of commanding for ever how the world shall be governed, or who shall govern it […] Every age and generation must be as free to act for itself in all cases as the ages and generations which preceded it. The vanity and presumption of governing beyond the grave is the most ridiculous and insolent of all tyrannies. (Paine 1996, 9).

The legitimacy of political order happened in the present tense, for it was “the living” instead of “the dead” who should decide upon the political order: The circumstances of the world are continually changing, and the opinions of men change also; and as Government is for the living, and not for the dead, it is the living only that has any right in it. (Paine 1996, 12).

Paine argued throughout his text for the constitutive assembly and maintained that there had never existed any constitution in England. To Paine, the English Parliament did indeed speak about constitution but it was the cant word of Parliament without any substance (Paine 1996, 92). Like Sieyès, Paine demanded for a constitutive assembly of the nation:

121 The right of reform is in the nation in its original character, and the constitutional method would be by a general convention elected for the purpose. (Paine 1996, 38). 9

Paine’s writing was a fervent appeal to political freedom in a republican manner. Like the Founding Fathers in America and Sieyès in France, he was in favour of the representative system within a republic. The question was, as we have seen, how to make a large scale state work; and the answer was: through representation (Paine 1996, 134-137). A direct participatory democracy was ruled out, for according to Paine, “the two modes of Government which prevail in the world, are: First: Government by election and representation. Secondly: Government by hereditary succession” (ibid. 100). 10 For Paine, a representative system could not be combined with monarchy, because representation in itself was a kind of monarchy of the nation, the centre where the nation met with itself: A nation is not a body, the figure of which is to be represented by the human body, but is like a body contained within a circle, having a common centre in which every radius meets; and that centre is formed by representation. To connect representation with what is called Monarchy is eccentric Government. Representation is of itself the delegated Monarchy of a nation, and cannot debase itself by dividing it with another. (Paine 1996, 137).

Who composed the nation? They were definitely not the owners of landed property as the physiocrats would have argued and as Paine said Burke did (see Paine 1996, 177-179). Paine was not, however, too clear in regards to the actual formation of the representative body. He wrote about “nature, reason, and experience” (ibid. 132). He also drew a parallel with “the republic of letters” when he described representation as “collecting wisdom from where it can be found” (ibid.). Sometimes it was “a variety of knowledge and talents” that was referred to (ibid. 138). Consequently, advocating the principles of equality and the Rights of Man did not necessarily mean that Paine held that everyone should in practice have a say in political matters. As noted above, Thomas Paine rejected the ”governing beyond the grave” and he maintained that there never existed any constitution in England. Contrary to Burke’s rejection of “the flash of the day”, Paine’s positive view on revolutionary political change and on the constitutive act that creates a national assembly seems to leave more room for political choices than Burke’s traditionalism. However, there was an idea of the transparency of language, 9 In the third moment of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of Citizens by the National Assembly of France, which was published in Paine’s book, it was stated that “the nation” was the source of all sovereignty: “The Nation is essentially the source of all sovereignty; nor can any individual, or any body of men, be entitled to any authority which is not expressly derived from it.” (Paine 1996, 72). 10 The republican system is thus based on representation: “In this view of Government, the Republican system, as established by America and France, operates to embrace the whole of a nation; and the knowledge necessary to the interest of all the parts, is to be found in the centre, which the parts by representation form[.]” (Paine 1996, 103).

122 combined with the demand for defining the right set of things in the constitution in Paine’s thought (Epstein 1996, 23-24). 11 This kind of rejection of the contestedness of the meaning of the language of a written constitution actually limited the possibilities on parliamentary politics, which is a view inherited in the tradition of natural law and contractual theory. As the opposite understandings of Burke and Paine illustrate, there is a temporal tension between a traditional view on constitution and, on the other hand, a revolutionary view on a written constitution. To Burke, ”written constitutions were no more than the political manifestos of the ruling groups at the time they were promulgated” (quoted in Maddox 1989, 62). Paine appealed to the rationality of the constitution rather than to its antiquity (Pocock 1987b, 232). Yet, a revolutionary notion of constitution was not totally free from the past, either. There has often been old ideas and procedural traces that have been taken into account when a revolutionary constitution has been constituted. For example, when Paine denied the existence of the English constitution, the American Founding Fathers, whom Paine openly admired, used to a large extent old English liberties as models and instructions in their revolutionary constitution (Maddox 1989, 50). Previous institutional settings often have given the legitimacy to the revolutionary constitutional convention. When the members of the Third Estate declared themselves as the Constitutional Convention in France, they based their authority on the ancient constitution, for they had been elected according to its rules and procedures. This is the point, for example, Hegel made in his critique against the French Revolution and Sieyès’ understanding of constitution. (Lagerspetz 1997, 122-126). To Hegel, constitutions do develop instead of being created by a single act. He stated that ”a constitution is not simply made; it is the work of centuries”, and ”no constitution can therefore be created purely subjectively” (quoted in Lagerspetz 1997, 124). Consequently, a constitution which is based only on the will of the monarch is as impossible as a constitution created by an unilateral act of the people. The obvious targets of Hegel’s argument were Rousseau and the French revolutionaries. Hegel rejected Sieyès’ view that ”the nation” had the right to dissolve the political bond with its rulers and to write a new constitution. As we have seen, Sieyès held that ”the nation” is both independent of all positive laws and their only source, i.e. that ”the nation” is not bound by any tradition. Hegel argued that if there is something more than just an atomistic aggregate of individuals there must then be a sort of constitution, as well. Then, to draw up a constitution means in fact that the constitution is changed. And if the constitution is presupposed, then its changing can only take place in a constitutional manner. On the other hand, if some group has no constitution, it is only an atomistic aggregate of individuals who cannot articulate any common will, thus nor any constitution. The point is that the change cannot be created ex nihilo, in a social vacuum. The fact that individuals are united by a common ruler makes them a people, not the other 11

To Paine, a written constitution was to liberty what a grammar was to language (Maddox 1989, 50).

123 way round. 12 Consequently, ”the people” cannot have any political role at all by appealing to the principles of natural law. (Lagerspetz 1997, 122-127). Constant came to a similar kind of conclusion, yet in a somewhat moderate manner. He warned about going ”beyond time”. 13 In other words, doctrines which were merely abstract without connection to the constitutional tradition were not valid in making the constitution. (Constant 1988, 302). The role of Parliament as a part of political tradition was of crucial importance in British “forging the nation”, as Linda Colley has called the process of making the British nation during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. 14 Colley views Parliament, together with the reconstructed monarchy, as an important part of the post-revolutionary political settlement in Britain, i.e. after the Glorious Revolution. The way Parliament functioned and how it gathered myths around it fostered national unity. According to Colley, ”there was an almost embarrassing consensus in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries that Parliament was unique, splendid and sovereign, and hard-won prerogative of a free and Protestant people” (Colley 1992, 50). Those who tried to promote a parliamentary reform found it difficult to break out of the view that Parliament was so self-evident an institution as it was. Colley maintains that the cult of Parliament was not the invention of the Whig historians of the nineteenth century. Parliament’s social depth in England and in parts of Wales and its growing popularity in Scotland made it difficult for the reformers to gain large-scale support. (Colley 1992, 52). The force of arguments which referred to the domestic political tradition in England has been noted also by Willibald Steinmetz who has shown that the debate on parliamentary reform in the 1780s was dominated by given experiences instead of foreseeing expectations. In the 1780s, the idea of the Ancient Constitution and the language of its judicial applications were regarded as more important as prospects in the future. 15 Opponents of the reform plans had a common line of argument, whereas the pro-reform camp disputed about the means. Appealing to ”the people” or ”opinion” was not possible in the parliamentary debates because of the dominating ideas of an independent representative and a deliberative assembly. Common sense was 12 Hobbes had put it, ”the People does not make the King; the King makes the People” (quoted in Lagerspetz 1997, 122). 13 ”[T]the constitution will be open to improvement. We can only hope that such improvement will be effected slowly, at leisure, without impatience and without attempting to go beyond our own time.” (Constant 1988, 302). 14 In her study Britons – Forging the Nation 1707-1837 (1992) Linda Colley shows how a new British nation was invented in the wake of the Act of Union between England, Wales, and Scotland in 1707. The title of the book refers to her conclusion that it was a combination of Protestant religion, antagonism against Catholic and revolutionary France, War of Independence in America, and a cult of Parliament, which contributed to the new national identity. What is especially of relevance here is Colley’s analysis on the rhetoric of nation and patriotism in the debates on parliamentary reform. 15 “Die Orientierung der historischen Verfassung und die Verpflichtung, Präzedenzfälle zu beachten, engten die Wahrnehmung möglicher Lösungsansätze weiter ein. Der eingeübte juristiche Blick richtet die Aufmerksamkeit zurück auf überkommene Rechsformen und erschwerte Zukunftsplanungen, die Neues an deren Stelle setzen.” (Steinmetz 1993, 57).

124 rhetorically more effective than referring to the necessities in the future. Cyclical metaphors of balance were more powerful than linear ones. (Steinmetz 1993, 57, 70, 103-109, 117-118, 133-137, 170). Contrary to what the example of Paine would suggest, radical uses of ”constitution” in the 1790s in Britain were not merely unhistorical and linked with the doctrine of natural law. The radicals did indeed appeal to the tradition of the Ancient Constitution in their rhetoric, while at the same time they defended the Paineite critique of the Burkean view on the Ancient Constitution. There was, no doubt, a hesitation about moving wholly outside the realm of custom and relying solely on natural reason. It was rhetorically hard to defend theories which were considered French in the time of war. Rather, the language of radicalism was eclectic, mixing historical and natural concepts of rights, the constitutional past and natural reason. (Epstein 1996, 31, 44, 49; Vernon 1993, 296, 306-307; Vernon 1996a, 9; Fulcher 1996, 63). While the Tories’ reading of the constitution was inclusive in the sense that all belonged virtually to ”the nation” no matter their rights, the radicals wanted to show that the Tory nation was exclusive and that the great mass of the people were unrepresented and had no legitimate claim to citizenship. They claimed that their demands for constitutional reform were actually based on the historic common law, i.e. to the Ancient Constitution, and all they wanted was to restore their lost rights. (Vernon 1993, 302-303). The Whigs tried to find a middle way between the Tories and the Radicals. They viewed the Glorious Revolution as a restoration of the lost political rights. The ”country” programme aimed at restoring the nation’s political virtue by rehabilitating the ideal of the classical citizen as an independent freeholder. (Vernon 1993, 304). The advocates of the neo-Harringtonian ”country ideology” also appealed to the Ancient Constitution. Their argument was that the constitution had degenerated from its original principles. Burke, Tories, and other conservative traditionalists were thus faced not only with a theory of natural right and rationalism, but also with a radical version of the Ancient Constitution. (Pocock 1973, 229-230). Accordingly, it has been argued that the language of republicanism in the nineteenth century was more based on the critique of ”Old Corruption” and the experience of the Commonwealth period and Cromwellianism than on the Paineite natural law doctrines (Taylor 1996, 154160). To perform in the name of constitutionalism, as well as in the name of neo-roman patriotism, made it possible for the radicals to claim legitimacy for their demands (Wahrman 1996, 111). The example of British constitutional discourse shows that there were both unhistorical rhetorical figures based on natural law and historical figures based on the traditional Ancient Constitution in the rhetoric of radicals. Consequently, clear divisions between pure categories do not work when we bring these divisions into the empirical uses of political actors. Political rhetoric is a matter of being able to combine and choose in a successful manner. As Pocock has noted, appealing to the Ancient Constitution offered several, and different, possibilities. It was possible to maintain that the existing constitution was at least partly based on an immemorial custom and that it thus derived a

125 legally binding force in the present. It might also be argued that the people were originally free and sovereign and thus able to arrange their constitution to suit their convenience. Moreover, it might be held that the Ancient Constitution had kept the people happy for centuries and thus it should be retained or restored. In addition, when the constitution was understood as immemorial, it was possible to argue against the idea of sovereign king. It was also possible to maintain that the people were the guardians of the people’s rights, but they, nevertheless, were not allowed to change the constitution which guaranteed these rights. (Pocock 1987b, 21, 51, 231).

6.3 Language of progress Despite the rhetoric of tradition, the idea of progress was emerging in political thought throughout Europe. According to Koselleck, it was probably Kant who first introduced the concept of “progress” in a modern meaning as he opposed the thesis that “things would always remain as they were” (Koselleck 1985, 80). The impact of the French Revolution was important in this respect. Experiences of the revolution and a sense of break in the process of historical events were strongly felt. 16 The concept of “revolution” gained a clearly future-oriented meaning instead of a cyclical or balancing understanding of changes (Koselleck 1985, 39-54; see also Arendt 1963; Thörn 1997, 65-67). “History” became a collective singular, and it was possible to speak about “history” in general, as a unity. 17 The Enlightenment and the French Revolution had provided the foundation for the understanding of “history in general”, according to which understanding the whole history was unique and not a series of repeating events in the course of time. Consequently, this meant that the future must be distinct from the past. What could be expected could no longer be deduced from previous experiences. Instead, the future would be different from the past – and better, as well. The concepts of “history” and “progress” were closely linked with each other. (Koselleck 1985, 246, 280-281). As the future was felt as new, the past was also reworked, which created an increased scientific interest in history (ibid. 57). 18 In fact, historicism, and romanticism as well, should be understood as parallel and complementary to “progressive” and “liberal” ideas 16

An example of the sense of the break was the production of revolutionary calendars during the revolution (e.g. Thörn 1997, 62). 17 According to Koselleck, from the second half of the eighteenth century on, time was no longer simply the medium in which all histories took place. Instead, it gained a historical quality. It was understood that history no longer occurred in time, but through time. (Koselleck 1985, 246). 18 Koselleck writes: ”In fact, the Revolution liberated a new future, whether sensed as progressive or as catastrophic, and in the same fashion a new past; the increasingly alien quality of the latter rendered it a special object of historical-critical science. Progress and historism, apparently mutually contradictionary, offer the face of Janus, that of the nineteenth century.” (Koselleck 1985, 57).

126 rather than something which is automatically in opposition to them. Moreover, the concept of “progress” was accompanied with the concept of “reaction” (Thörn 1997, 63, 66). A trust in history’s progressive design was strong despite the terror of the Revolution, for otherwise it would be hard to explain why those who “reacted” to the Revolution in a negative manner came to be labelled as “reactionaries” (Hirschman 1991, 9). During the late eighteenth century and the early nineteenth century, political language became more future-oriented than it had earlier been. The relation between the past, the present, and the future changed. Experience as the main organising principle in political action gave way to expectations. The difference between “space of experience” (Erfarungsraum) and “horizon of expectations” (Erwartungshorizont) expanded. This distinction between experiences and expectations made it possible to speak about “progress”. “Space of experience” and “horizon of expectations” should not be understood as symmetrical and complementary concepts, rather they are of different orders. Experience is present past, expectation the future made present. There is a tension between experience and expectation, for the historical future is not the straightforward product of the historical past. Moreover, experiences can change in the course of time; new experiences can open new perspectives to earlier experiences. (Koselleck 1985, 272-279, 284). Accordingly, Koselleck has argued that many political key concepts were temporalised and became “concepts of movement” (Bewegungsbegriffe) during the period between ca. 1750 and 1850; the period which he has named as Sattelzeit (e.g. Koselleck 1972, XV). 19 A sign of this temporalisation was the emergence of political concepts with “isms”, such as, for example, “republicanism”, “liberalism”, and “conservatism”, which were projected into the future (Koselleck 1985, 259-261, 287). Such concepts often became more abstract than before, as well. The more abstract they became, the easier it was to use them as catchwords. They were politically loaded and available for perspectivistic possession. In other words: As general concepts they invite occupation, no matter what concrete experience or expectations enter into them. In this way, dispute arises over the correct political interpretation; that is, the means of excluding one’s opponent from using the same words to say and wish that which might differ from one’s own conception. (Koselleck 1985, 265).

It is important to note the temporal aspects within political concepts. In political struggles, it was of crucial importance to be able to use convincingly political concepts which reached out towards the future. As the “space of experience” shrank, the expectations became the guide for men coping with modernity (Stråth 1990, 3). For example, it became common in different political camps to refer to “the spirit of the times” (Zeitgeist) as a part of a


There has been some discussion on the correctness of the timing of the Sattelzeit and its applicability in different political contexts. For my purposes here it is more important to note some temporal characteristics of the thesis than to discuss its right place in history.

127 pathos of the future in Prussia during the first half of the nineteenth century (Koselleck 1987, 44, 297, 364). The idea of “progress” was linked with the idea of the division of labour, as well as with the industrial development and the invention of machines. Not only political, but also social and technical changes were conceived of in terms of “progress” and constantly accelerating. For example, Adam Smith viewed the progress of society as the result of the increasing division of labour in intellectual and material life. (Koselleck 1985, 283). For the writers of the Scottish Enlightenment, ”feudal” and ”commercial” became the two latest stages in the ”the history of Civil Society”. This was a new kind of classification, which was not constitutional dividing polities into monarchies, aristocracies, and democracies or republics. Instead, it was a social and economic one. The question was, how the society might influence political institutions. Accordingly, the transformation from the eighteenth century to the nineteenth century can be characterised as a change from a static eighteenthcentury conception of balance of powers to a nineteenth-century dynamic and optimistic conception of progress in Britain. Whereas in the eighteenth century the threat was the loss of constitutional liberty, in the nineteenth century it was stagnation. (Burrow 1988, 26-29, 39, 89, 106-107, 117). Full of ideas of the Enlightenment and the early experiences of the French Revolution, Paine was self-confident with an optimism and trust in the progress of Mankind when he stated that hereditary governments were losing ground and the revolutions and representative governments were making headway in Europe (Paine 1996, 106). 20 The idea of general progress was not strange to Burke, either. Conversely, his idea of conservative reforms was linked with the idea of progress, yet in a form of organic development of political institutions. To him, the revolution had failed in its unhistorical attempt to make progress. Instead, the outcome had been counterproductive; a perverse effect (see Hirschman 1991, 12-15). The distinction between experiences and expectations, the break between the past and the future, was the background against which Tocqueville analysed the democracy in America and the political currents in Europe. He viewed the age of democracy as a period within which the link between the past and the present was severed. Characteristic of democracy was its lack of continuity with the past: Aristocracy had made a chain of all the members of the community, from the peasant to the King; democracy breaks that chain and severs every link of it. [...] Thus not only does democracy make every man forget his ancestors, but it hides his descendants and separates his temporaries from him[.] (Tocqueville 1998, 206-207).


“As it is not difficult to perceive, from the enlightened state of mankind, that hereditary Governments are verging to their decline, and that Revolutions on the broad basis of national sovereignty and Government by representation, are making their way in Europe [.]” (Paine 1996, 106).

128 Tocqueville gave an example of the general change of mind around the French Revolution, an example know from Paine as well as from Koselleck’s analysis. 21 The diminishing of the past was compensated with the idea of progress. As noted in the previous chapter of this study, Tocqueville took the progress of democracy as an inevitability (Tocqueville 1998, 32). The idea of progress was applied also in concrete struggles in the spreading of the franchise. For example, compared to the debate on reforming political representation in the 1780s, the rhetorical situation had changed in the early 1830s in Britain. Whereas the Ancient Constitution and “the space of experience” had outweighed the demands for a reform in the 1780s, ”the horizon of expectations” dominated over ”the space of experiences” during the debates on the Parliament Act of 1832. In the 1780s, both sides of the struggle had used metaphors of balance when they had described the political system. In the 1830s, the self-stabilising perpetuum mobile had disappeared from the language of the Whigs. Metaphors of balance and body had given way to metaphors of natural catastrophes. Moreover, there was a wide arsenal of progressive and linear expressions in use. (Steinmetz 1993, 197, 286-289, 312). 22 Opponents of the reform proposal, too, were forced to argue in the terms of the future. It was necessary to explain and justify the functioning of the old system in the future. In the Whig politics, possible progress was evaluated higher than not doing anything. Staying still meant stagnation and it was considered a threat. The Tories, in turn, tried to warn about the dangers of the lack of governability of the country, the hollowing of the institutions like the monarchy and the church, the ruining of the balance of interests, and the decrease of the capacity of the representatives. However, these kinds of arguments had a resigned effect rather than an argumentative one. According to Steinmetz, the Ancient Constitution had lost its appeal. As a consequence, the concept of experience changed. It was no more connected strictly with the political institutions. While the opponents of the reform still held that the constitution was organic and maintained that ”it is not a building, but a tree”, it was more common to speak about the natural history of society instead of the constitution. 23 This meant that the issue of reform was tied with the idea of socio-economic development. In the Whig rhetoric, the widening of the franchise towards the lower classes was viewed as a natural consequence of the social development. Nonetheless, it was to be connected with the economic and


True, Tocqueville later maintained in his L’Ancien Régime et la Révolution (1856) that the Revolution represented much less of a break with the Ancien Régime than had commonly been thought (Hirschman 1991, 46-50). 22 Amongst different ”unpersonal agents” (unpersönliche Agenten) that were used in the beginning of the 1830s were such as ”spread of intelligence”, ”march of mind”, ”middle classes”, ”intelligent and independent citizens”, ”spirit of inquiry”, ”wealth”, ”learning”, ”intelligence”, ”spirit of age”, ”movement”, ”civilisation”. (Steinmetz 1993, 287-289). 23 Macaulay, for example, stated that ”[u]nhappily, while the natural growth of society went on, the artificial polity continued unchanged. The ancient form of the representation remained; and precisely because the form remained, the spirit departed.” (quoted in Steinmetz 1993, 281).

129 educational development of the lower classes. Census was considered temporarily needed. (Steinmetz 1993, 198, 208-219, 227, 233, 280-284). There is a reason to tread carefully here. Steinmetz seems to claim that the Ancient Constitution had lost its appeal in the 1830s. However, the role of the rhetoric of constitution should not be underestimated, for the idea of constitution was deeply embedded within the English political culture during the nineteenth century. Characteristic of nineteenth-century politics was a discourse about the historical meanings of the constitution. According to Vernon, the rhetoric of “constitution” was the master narrative of nineteenthcentury English politics, fusing together stories of English liberty, history and national identity in such a manner that no one could afford to refuse it. This meta-narrative took the form of melodrama giving its subjects a sense of agency and purpose by presenting a narrative of struggle between good and evil, of a utopian promise of the restoration of a golden age that had prevailed before the fall. The interpretative struggle over “the constitution” dealt to a great extent with the competing definitions of virtuous people and with the question of who was to be included in the political nation. (Vernon 1993, 295-296, 328-329; Vernon 1996a, 2, 9, 12-14; Vernon 1996b, 204; see also Joyce 1996, 188; Hirschman 1991, 89-91). The concept of “constitution” was highly contested. Because the constitutional rhetoric was used strategically in legitimising purposes, “constitution” was continually re-described in different and contrasting ways. It should be noted that rhetorical re-descriptions of the constitutional tradition did not necessarily have to be in conflict with the idea of progress. A maintenance with historical and organic growth of political institutions could be combined with “a progressive” view of development. For example, John Stuart Mill had such a combination. The progress of democracy was for him an unavoidable fact and he welcomed it as something that was favourable and morally right. However, Mill joined the tradition of English constitutionalism and its idea of the historicity of political institutions, even if he was arguing in Representative Government that there was a middle-way between an inventive and an organic view of government (Mill 1991, 205-216). 24 As a matter of fact, he maintained in somewhat Burkean manner, that ”the British Government is […] a representative government in the correct sense of the term” (ibid. 270).


Mill stated that “it is evident that neither of these is entirely in the right, yet it being equally evident that neither is wholly in the wrong” (Mill 1991, 207).





7.1 Introduction of the concept of “national representation” in Sweden in 1809—10 The constitutional discussions in 1809—10 are the most obvious starting point if one is looking for a revolutionary concept of ”national representation” in Sweden. The King Gustaf IV Adolf was overthrown in 1809 and the Riksdag decided upon the new constitution which was based on the separation of powers between the King and the Riksdag. This ended nearly a forty year long period of rule by Gustavian kings with absolutist tendencies. In 1810, the organisation of political representation was confirmed in the Riksdag Act. During these years, radical ideas of the early 1790s were again expressed. For example, Anders Nordell, a district judge who lent support to radical peasants, wrote in May in 1809 that there should be “the new people” worthy to be called “the nation” (Karlbom 1965, 157-159). Thus far it had been impossible, because each Estate had its own national character. According to the Dictionary of Swedish Academy (Svenska Akademis Ordbok 1), the word “national assembly” (nationalförsamling) first appeared in the Swedish language when the newspaper Stockholms post-tidningar referred to the French National Assembly in 1791. The term ”national representation” was used in 1809 as a reference to a demand, presented in the Clergy Estate, for a recreation of Estate-based representation in order to achieve ”a more perfect national representation”. It should be noted that in this example the argument was not in favour of the abolition of the representation by the Estates. Instead, it was 1

Reference is made to SAOB. I have used the web-sites of the Dictionary of Swedish Academy. The entry is indicated in the references.

134 put forward as a demand for reforming the Riksdag by opening the Estates to some unrepresented groups of non-noble persons of standing. (SAOB, national-). During the eighteenth century, “nation” was often used in the context of academic corporations, as “student nations”. However, another understanding of “the nation”, and one more common today, became a central concept in political language from the 1770s onwards, in discussions between the King Gustaf III and his opponents. Radical arguments were expressed already in the 1760s when the Estate privileges were discussed. For example, in 1769, “nation” was used in the meaning which condemned the inequality between the rich and the poor; as ”two nations” within one country (SAOB, nation-). The coup d’état of King Gustaf in 1772 raised a royal patriotic cheer among the elite in the country. This wave was produced by Gustaf himself. However, the opponents of the King called themselves ”patriots” after the take-over. The anti-royal opposition used national rhetoric in their campaign against the absolutist tendencies of the King. The term “national party” was used against the King’s plans for the war against Russia in 1788. The opposition wanted to show that the Estates represented the ”nation”, not the King and his officials. The King, in turn, could use the widely known corruption during the Age of Liberty as a rhetorical weapon for his claim that he represented the ”nation”, not the Estates. (Lönnroth 1988, 101-108). 2 According to the Dictionary of Swedish Academy, the word “patriot” appeared in the Swedish language in 1622. It referred to a “landsman”, i.e. to a person who lives in the same country. “Patriotisme” appeared in 1765 denoting the love of fatherland. (SAOB, patriot-). “A patriot” was, in the eighteenth century, above all a useful citizen who was for the general well-being of the society and against egoistic interests. He (sic) was understood as a diligent and industrious person. According to the Swedish Etymological Dictionary (Svensk etymologisk ordbok), the word “patriot” was used during the Age of Liberty in the meaning of “the warmest supporter of the system of manufactures” (Hellqvist 1948, 754). In 1730, a “good patriot” was given the definition of a person who views devotion to the fatherland as the ground for all happiness, and who will live in accordance with the laws. He thinks that anarchy and tyranny are evil, and he defends the freedom of the country to the best of his abilities. Moreover, he is against self-interest and instead works for the economic and material well-being of the country (see Nilsson 1984, 13). Accordingly, it was in the sense of a useful and a law-abiding citizen that “patriot” was used, although the concept was also given an egalitarian meaning in the late 1760s and early 1770s (Nordin 2000, 408-418). “A patriot” was 2

In the eighteenth century, the notion of Sweden was chiefly associated, for the great majority of the population, with the notion of the kingdom, which was held together by the King and the Lutheran state church. Most of the nobility, and especially army officers and high civil servants, had an international elitist culture as their background and orientation. The Swedish élite was influenced by the French language and the French culture. It was thus easier for the revolutionary ideas to break through in Sweden, as in many other countries as well.

135 committed to fight against party struggles and Estate interests. Also, it came to denote the members of the opposition against Gustaf III (Hellqvist 1948, 754). However, “fatherland” was a central concept in Gustaf’s speech to the Estates in 1772 when he made his coup d’état (SKL I 1845-1851, 585). Accordingly, the use of patriotic vocabulary dealt more with the ability to use it than with an attempt to give to the concept of “patriotism” a new meaning. In fact, the patriotic rhetoric deals often more with an ability to use the concept than with an effort to introduce a new definition to it. In the 1770s, the King and his opposition did not so much disagree upon the meaning of "being patriotic" but they did disagree upon the question of who had the legitimate right to use this positively evaluated concept. 3 During the French Revolution, anti-royal national and patriotic sentiments increased further. 4 Concepts of ”citizen”, ”patriot”, and ”philosopher” became openly contested at the beginning of the 1790s. The royal campaign for patriotic citizen came into conflict with more radical uses. Shortly after the outbreak of the revolution the patriotic revolutionary enthusiasm was flourishing. The concept of ”citizenship” gained republican connotations and the King was declared “a despot”. ”Patriotism” meant liberty and equality for the supporters of the revolution. Pamphlets and letters were published. The man behind the revolutionary paper Patrioten, Lorens Münter Philipson, attacked those who had called themselves “patriots”, but who in fact had been fostering their own egoistic interests. “A real patriot” was one who was against oppression and slavery. However, after a short period of turbulence, the old order was restored, and an apolitical ideal of citizen as an industrious peasant was hailed. “A political citizen” gave way to “an economic citizen”. (Christensson 1996, 116-169, 395-399; see also Nilsson 1984, 14; Stråth 1994, 55). By 1809, ”the nation” had been a contested concept between the King and the Estates. There were interpretations of ”the nation” which did not agree with the system of the Estates and which were first put forward around the year 1770, and again during the French Revolution. Nevertheless, the Instrument of Government of 1809 did not touch upon the representation by Estates, and the Riksdag Act of 1810 did not change the old system, either. In 1809, the Committee on the Constitution used in its memorandum, without any difficulties, the expression “the Estates of the Kingdom” (Riksens Ständer) with the expression “national representation” (National-Representation) in the same context (SKU 1999, 183-191). Moreover, the text consisted of expressions as 3

In Gustavian rhetoric, ”citizen” had been defined as ”patriotic” in order to avoid the fractious connotations. The pattern had been collected from the classical republicanism, which suited well for these purposes. An ideal citizen was patriotic in a sense of a useful and honoured member of the fatherland. ”Royal civism” was sponsored by, for example, The Patriotic Society (Patriotiska sällskapet), founded in 1767 and made royal in 1772, The Academy of Literature, The Academy of Science, The National Theatre, The Royal Opera, and especially The Swedish Academy. A patriotic key-word was ”honour”. (Christensson 1996, 129-134-136). 4 The revolution had influential supporters also in The Swedish Academy and thus in the circles around the King Gustaf. He was, although influenced by the French philosophers, an eager opponent of the revolution having privately condemned the revolutionaries in a letter calling them ”the orang-outangs of Europe”. (Lönnroth 1988, 109-111).

136 “general ways of thinking” (allmänna tankesätt) and “national will” (nationalwilja). However, it did not mean anything particularly radical. In the context of 1809, when Sweden was at war with Russia, and when the eastern half of the Kingdom, Finland, was occupied by Russian forces, there was every reason to use expressions which referred to general or national interest. Consequently, the term ”national representation” did not automatically refer to something that would have originated from the French revolution and to something that would be against the political Estates. 5 By confirming the system of Estates, the Instrument of Government of 1809 actually paved the way for the continued representation of the Estates. There is actually a conflation of a rhetoric of territorial sovereignty and a new vocabulary of national politics at play here. It has commonly been understood that the political life in Sweden has developed from the ancient customs and practices of local self-governance (e.g. Fahlbeck 1904, 3). 6 As mentioned in the first chapter, it has also been argued that the Instrument of Government of 1809 was in fact merely ”the history of Sweden put in the paragraphs” (Lagerroth 1942, III; see also Fahlbeck 1904, 4-5). This view has been disputed, first of all, by Axel Brusewitz and his students who argued that the constitution of 1809 was largely the outcome of a foreign import (e.g. Brusewitz 1913; 63-72). The issue has been one of the most discussed academic topics in Swedish constitutional history ever. It seems that a sort of middle-way position has won during the second half of the twentieth century (e.g. Carlsson 1987, 170). Consequently, it is possible to make some distinctions in understanding ”national representation” in accordance with different interpretations on Swedish constitutional tradition. It may be easier to view ”national representation” as a “natural” institution of the Estates when one is referring to the traditionalist view on constitutional history, according to which the four Estates have played a central role. However, the traditionalist view can also be made to serve a radical democratic interpretation as well. One can argue, then, that there had been a democratic origin in Swedish political culture. This argument allows for demands for returning to the golden past. As a consequence, ”national representation” is something that precedes the Estates. If one puts the emphasis on foreign influences instead, then ”national representation” is easier to link with patterns from England and from the French Revolution. The first paragraph of the Riksdag Act of 1810 stated that ”the Estates of the Kingdom are the representatives of the Swedish people”, not of any 5

Kjellén has argued that, in 1809, there were no serious attempts to create a revolutionary national assembly which would have decided on the new constitution. The new constitution was adopted by the Estates at the ordinary Riksdag. This has made it possible for Kjellén to argue that not even in the exceptional circumstances in 1809 was there a break between the past and the present. The war did not allow for any delay, and after the overthrow of the king stability was preferred first of all. Thus, if there is a need to search for revolutionary examples, then it would be the Glorious Revolution, rather than the French revolution, that would be the pattern. (Kjellén 1897, 21-26). 6 ”[F]innes det egentligen blott två länder, som äga författningar af gammalt ursprung, England och Sverige[.]” (Fahlbeck 1904, 3).

137 particular interests or Estates (e.g. Kjellén 1915, 6; Fahlbeck 1934, 96). The principle that the Estates did not represent any particular interests was written in the constitution for the first time. It was also mentioned that a member of the Riksdag was not bound by any restrictions other than the constitution. The paragraph has been interpreted as a consequence of the French Constitution of 1791, as well as a consequence of a moderate doctrine of natural law (Fahlbeck 1934, 98). The formulation of the paragraph created some opposition in the House of Nobility. It was claimed that the paragraph should not apply to the Nobility, as their right to be represented was based on ancient tradition and birth, not on any fantastic view of the representation of the people. (Fahlbeck 1934, 99; see also Boëthius 1905, 231). The most important notion against the political Estates was laid down in the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution of 1810. However, the memorandum was more an outline than a real attempt to change the system of representation. Even if the proposal of the Committee was defeated in 1815, it nevertheless was an explicit argument for abolishing the Estates. It was proposed that the system of Estates should be replaced by a bicameral representation in which the right to vote would be personal and guaranteed to all ”active citizens” (KU [1810] 1844, 113). 7 The Committee argued that the disputes and disorders of the country derived from the Estate divisions, which had divided the nation and overthrown the constitution. Moreover, the defects of the representation were due to its division in the Estates. The Estates had advanced only their egoistic interests, not the interests of the whole. The Committee held that the proposal was a result of both a theoretical reasoning and practical experiences. It was not thought, stated the memorandum, that the national representation should be based purely on theoretical grounds, as had been the case in France. (ibid. 110, 117-118). The memorandum was championed by Count A. G. Mörner, who was one of the men behind the Instrument of Government. Mörner had studied in the University of Uppsala where he had belonged to radical circles between 1788 and 1792. Revolutionary ideas as well as thoughts of Montesquieu and Rousseau were great examples for him. The most important theorist was, however, Sieyès, whose famous speech in 1795 Mörner is said to have heard in Paris. Like Sieyès, Mörner soon moderated his revolutionary opinion on representation. The model of 1789 proved to be too vulnerable in the hands of the revolutionaries. The representative body should be divided into two chambers in order to avoid the extremes of democracy. Sieyès’ directorial system of 1795, with its two chambers and the idea of ”active” and ”passive” citizens, was what Mörner had in mind when he formulated the memorandum. 7

According to the memorandum, the lower chamber had a right to propose laws, the upper to decide upon them. In taxation, the procedure went the other way round. There would be joint elections to both chambers, though some men were to be automatic members of the Riksdag, thanks to their birth or the offices they held. (e.g. Carlsson 1987, 179; Hildebrand 1896, 629; Edén 1935, 229). There were physiocratic emphasises in the memorial of the committee. It was stated, for example, that ”it is the interests of properties and possessions that should be taken into account in a new representation” (quoted in Wibling 1954, 114).

138 According to him, Rousseau’s idea of the sovereignty of the people, complemented by Montesquieu’s idea of the separation of powers, was behind Sieyès’ model of 1795 as well as behind his own creation. (Brusewitz 1913, 127150). A bicameral system of representation was generally preferred during the early nineteenth century. The idea that there should not be any transitional corporations between the state and an individual ran into difficulties in Europe after the fall of Napoleon, and romantic ideas on mediating powers within a state organism were emphasised. (Boëthius 1918, 234-235). Thus, there is a good reason for being careful not to present a linear history of progress here, for even if the principle of “national representation” was introduced in Sweden around 1809, it does not mean that the way would have been open to its implementation. On the contrary, the idea of Estates as organic mediators within the state was eagerly developed at the same time. The system of the Estates was often viewed as a real ”national representation”. Accordingly, it seems that there were at least two different uses of ”national representation” in Sweden around 1809. On the one hand, it could mean the institution of political representation in general without any specific political principles. Such a use can be found in the example which the Dictionary of Swedish Academy gave, as the term was used in order to achieve a better representation within the framework of the Estates. On the other hand, there are several examples that show that ”national representation” was used in the meaning which rejected the division of representation according to the Estates. It could be, then, the French National Assembly that was the model, or it could be a moderate bicameral pattern that lay behind such uses. The main point was, nevertheless, that the Estates should be replaced by individual citizens. Accordingly, there were at least two different understandings of ”the nation”, one of which excluded the Estates from ”the nation”. There are a number of interpretations which claim that the year 1809 marks a watershed in Swedish nationalism. As mentioned in the first chapter, the issue of “national representation” has been noted, yet without any specific analysis (Jansson 1990, 349; Jansson 1997, 74). The main emphasises have been given to the changed international position of Sweden and to social changes the country went through. Consequently, the loss of Finland marked the change in Sweden. After the loss of Finland to Russia in 1809, it was time to win back Finland ”within the frontiers of Sweden”, as Esaias Tegnér put it in his poem Svea, which was given the first prize by the Swedish Academy in 1811. A construction of the new ”small-nation” began as the Kingdom of Sweden was transformed to a nation-state (despite the fact that Norway created a personal union with Sweden). 8 This project has been understood as mobilisation from above in which a central role was played by The Gothic Society (Götiska Förbundet), founded in 1811, with its national romantic agenda. Götiska 8

The transformation was not immediate and absolute. For example, the northern part of Lapland near the border with the Grand Duchy of Finland was made ’Swedish’ only from the late nineteenth century on (Jansson 1990, 350-354; Jansson 1997, 69-70, 84-85).

139 Förbundet intensified the promotion of a myth of an ancient freedom of Swedish peasants and of a coalition between the King and the people against feudal exploitation. The key concept was “freedom”, which was taken as a characteristic part of the Swedish egalitarian heritage. Moreover, the Lutheran Church was a bulwark against Catholicism, which marked a break in the egalitarian tradition and thus in the coalition between the King and the people. The King, together with the peasant hero Engelbrekt, were presented as representatives of popular interests in the history books. (Stråth 1994, 55-59; Hall 1998, 63-64; Hallberg 2000). The idealisation of the Swedish peasant as an independent, equal, and propertied man might suggest that there is a link between the Swedish understanding of a free peasant and the civic humanistic view on a freeholding peasant as a model citizen. The ‘Harringtonian’ civism viewed the freeholding peasant as a patriotic citizen who was autonomous and thus capable of participating in politics. The function of property was to render the individual independent, and the ideal paradigm of property was a freehold in land (Pocock 1973, 91). However, the ideal of the free peasant can be viewed also in the light of “rooted” citizen who is patriotic due to his roots in the land. He is included into a society as a citoyen-propriétaire who is first of all a useful member of a society, and only secondary a political citizen. Despite this promoting “the national”, there was also a national current in nineteenth-century Sweden which was directed against the Estates and which in some respect was raised from below. Liberal associations, newspapers, and the voluntary military movement were all expressions of this new national idea. Many “liberals” wanted to create “the nation” which transcended the Estates and guilds and which was based on individuals. “The principle of associations” (Associationsprincipen) was incorporated with this kind of national thinking, expressed, for example, in the title of the journal Nationalföreningen (The National Association) in 1834 (Petterson 1993, 157; Jansson 1990, 346-358; Jansson 1995, 27; cf. Stråth 1994, 59). 9


Lars Trägårdh has argued that the national issue was of relatively little importance in Sweden and that the concept of “the people” (folk) was associated with allmoge (country people, peasantry) and bonde (peasant), which tended to deepen the Jacobin-democratic connotations of the concept of ”the people” at the expense of the association of ”the people” and ”nation”. The folk-vocabulary increased in the Swedish dictionaries and lexicons in the beginning of the nineteenth century. According to Trägårdh, there was an institutionalised link between the idealised concept of folk and the present political situation, thanks to the local self-government and the political representation of the Peasant Estate. Of importance is that Götiska förbundet did have an already used trope in the earlier Gothic literature in which the idea of the yeoman peasant, odalbonden, could be linked. (Trägårdh 1993, 64-69, 91-92, 185-188, 194-195, 338). Trägårdh tends to emphasise only democratic aspects of the folk-discourse and underestimate the exclusiveness of the concept. Of uttermost importance is, nevertheless, that he pays attention to the democratic connotations of the concepts of folk and ”the nation”, and that he notes that there was both democratic-popular and conservative uses of these concepts (Trägårdh 1990, 31-34).


7.2 On the Swedish history of political representation There is an intertwined dynamic between a creation of a centralised political representation and a creation of a united political community. The creation of a centralised political representation in Sweden obviously dealt with the creation of the united Kingdom of Sweden, ett rike. Conversely, the creation of ett rike made it possible and, no doubt, necessary to develop a functioning procedure of centralised political representation. 10 It has often been held that the first Swedish representative institutions were of ancient German origin. However, it has also been argued that Sweden followed a common European pattern and adopted European feudal institutions and adapted them to Swedish conditions. Any direct foreign influence is thus hard to find. Instead, the development of parliamentary institutions was a tendency common among the more advanced countries of the Western world. (Schück 1987, 5- 10). It has also been argued that the system of political representation in Sweden cannot be understood purely in terms of parliament; it cannot be understood without knowing its foundations in regional and local representation (Lönnroth 1989, 88). The starting point for representation was an administrative and legal division of the country into provincial regions with their own laws, jurisdiction and extended selfgovernment (Blickle 1989, 25). The importance of the provincial assemblies and parish meetings declined from the fourteenth century on, when the Swedish Kingdom acquired a central government, the King’s Council, and when the assemblies for the election of a new King were established. These changes, however, did not render the principle of regional assemblies obsolete. (Lönnroth 1989, 89). During the period circa 1350 to 1600, the political system was still quite informal. The King and his Council had to negotiate with more or less autonomous local institutions, for the tradition of communalism and provincial autonomy was strong. (Blickle et al. 1997, 122). The Land Law (landslag) of the King Magnus Eriksson around the year 1350 is an often referred to point of departure in Swedish constitutional history. It is the first codification of civil and criminal law for the whole rike. The most important part of the law, from the viewpoint of political representation, was the King’s Code (konungsbalken) in which the Kingdom of Sweden was defined as an indivisible rike with only one king (SKU 1999, 46). It can be taken as a vital consolidation of the Kingdom and as a crucial step towards the formation of a unitary state of Sweden, despite the fact that the provincial meetings continued to exist till the year 1678. For the sake of political representation, the 10

I have translated the word ”rike” as ”kingdom” instead of the more commonly used ”realm”, because I take ”realm” as an unsuitably archaic term which does not have the same references to political order as ”kingdom” has. It should be noted that rike referred to the Swedish and Finnish mainland, not to all provinces which were conquered during the seventeenth century (see Nordin 2000, 42-48). Thus rike can be associated with the territories which sent representatives to the Riksdag after the institution of central political representation had been established.

141 most important statute of the konungsbalken was that the King was to be elected instead of being hereditary (SKU 1999, 47). Accordingly, after the Land Law a term valrike (Kingdom by election) was established denoting the empire of the Kingdom. Another significant statute in the konungsbalken was that the king was to be advised by a Council (råd). The institution of the council was developed from irregular meetings of the King, bishops, and aristocrats. These meetings were called the herredagar. (SKU 1999, 50). The dating of the birth of a centralised political representation has been an issue of some controversy. In short, the question has been whether one should take the first occurrences of the term riksdag as a point of departure, or whether the first practices of rik-wide representation should be counted. 11 Notwithstanding the Land Law and the election meetings in which the deputies of the landscapes elected the king, the making of the Riksdag is nowadays considered a later phenomenon of the period of Vasa kings in the 16th century. There are two main criteria which have been taken as decisive. Firstly, it was only then that all four Estates, “Estates of the Kingdom” (riksens ständer), were viewed as representing the people. Secondly, the word riksdag came into use, instead of the old riksmöte. ”Riksdag” was first used in 1561. Its use was only gradually established, and the word was finally written in the Instrument of Government in 1634. The word was borrowed from the German word ”Reichstag”. ”Ständer” was likewise a German loan, which originally came from the Latin word ”status”. The word referred to the organised social groups that were taken into account in the political life of the riket. It was used at the first time in the riksmöte in 1544 in Västerås during the reign of Gustaf Vasa. (Stjernquist 1999, 15-17; Edén 1935, 9; Metcalf 1987a, 1; Schück 1987, 44-45, 58). However, the term herredagar continued to be used long after the word riksdag was first used. Consequently, the exact dating of birth of the Riksdag is a hard task, for the vagueness in terminology implies a vagueness of practice (Schück 1987, 7-8). More than its age, the remarkable thing about the parliament was that it remained an influential political and legislative institution in the sixteenth century, during the period when parliaments in most European countries were in decline (Blickle et al. 1997, 123-124). The Riksdag first developed into a parliamentary institution during the period of a strong monarchy. The formation of the Riksdag was part of a process of state building during the rule of Vasa kings. Parliamentary meetings were frequently used to support the regimes and to authorise the taxation which their policies required (Schück 1987, 38-39, 49, 56). The rise of Sweden as a Great Power in the seventeenth 11 A major project in Swedish constitutional history in the 1930s, which produced a series of books under the title Sveriges riksdag, took as its point of departure the peasant uprising, lead by a mythical peasant hero Engelbrekt Engelbrektsson, and the overthrow of the king in the riksmöte in Arboga in 1435 (see Sveriges riksdag, Band I, 1931). In the beginning of the twentieth century, history textbooks often portrayed Engelbrekt as the founder of the Riksdag. This idea attracted also many leading constitutional historians because of his reputation as a popular hero against the Danish monarch, and it was in this national and democratic spirit the quincentennial of the Riksdag was celebrated in 1935. (Schück 1987, 7).

142 century and the concomitant creation of an efficient central administration was, as well, linked with an increased importance of the Riksdag. During the period of recurring wars, the primary motive for the King and his Council to summon the Estates to a Riksdag was the need for money and men (Rystad 1987, 102). Thus, the development of the parliamentary institution can be viewed in a light of its being an organ of royal government. This was the case in England in the sixteenth century as well, where the main purpose of Parliament was to grant the crown money and to pass the legislation proposed by the government (Koeningsberger 1989, 74). The leading principle in the establishment of the Estate Diet was expressed, following the Roman Law, that ”what touches all must be approved by all” (e.g. Stjerquist 1999, 17; Schück 1987, 10, 36). Erik Sparre, who was the foremost aristocratic theorist of anti-absolutism and a member of King’s Council in the late sixteenth century, argued that there had been “estates” before the time of Gustaf Vasa in spite of the fact that the Land Law did not mention them. (Saastamoinen 1999, 9-12; Schück 1987, 51-52). The principle that the Estates were represented at the Riksdag was formally confirmed in the Accession Charter (konungaförsäkran) in 1611, in which it was also stated that the consent of the Riksdag, as well as of the Council, was necessary for all general legislation. (SKU 1999, 65-70; see also Blickle et al. 1997, 128; Metcalf 1987a, 2; Rydstad 1987, 69). The Estates got a more solid structure than before, and the workings of the Noble Estate were regulated in the Riddarhus Act in 1626. Consequently, it has been argued that the entire concept of ”estates” prior to the seventeenth century must be reassessed (Schück 1987, 5). 12 The political representation of the peasants through an estate of its own is an often mentioned and unique peculiarity of Swedish political culture by international comparison. The Peasant representation has been taken as a source and almost as a guarantee of the popular and democratic political culture in the country. (e.g. Sørensen & Stråth 1997, 3-4; Trägårdh 1993). 13 However, some scholars have noted that the Peasant representation, too, was exclusive in its character and not necessary so equal as has often been maintained (Stenius 1997, 168; Kettunen 1999, 262-264; Schück 1987, 6). In fact, the representatives of the Peasant Estate were increasingly often chosen among 12

In the Instrument of Government of 1634, the principles of aristocratic constitutionalism of the seventeenth century were confirmed. Axel Oxenstierna, the man who wrote the Instrument of Government, declared that the Council was a mediator between the king and people. Its duty was to hold a balance in the constitution. However, the position of the Council declined under the rule of Carl XI and Carl XII from the 1680s on, and the Council can said to have became the King’s Council instead of having been the Council of the State. (Roberts 1986, 3; Schück 1987, 57). Before the period of Carolinian absolutism the position of the Estates was so strong that the 1660s has even been called the Little Age of Liberty (Stjerquist 1999, 19; Rystad 1987, 77). 13 Svedelius has argued that the peasants formed a political Estate because all the other Estates were actually based on it and originated from it. According to him, it was impossible to have a real “assembly of the kingdom” (riksförsamling) without the peasants. If the peasants were excluded, then it was a question of herredagar or some other sorts of meetings. It can be noted, however, that in the eighteenth century the members of the Riksdag were often still called herredagsmän instead of riksdagsmän. (Svedelius 1889, 86-87).

143 land-owning peasants. Consequently, the Peasant Estate was developing into a somewhat exclusive class which was separated from the other rural population, both from labouring masses and land-owning nobility. (Blickle et al. 1997, 124). As the political power of the political Estates increased, the gap between the Estates and other population increased, too. The Estates became more exclusive than before. The peasants were actually eager to protect the exclusivity of their Estate. Only those peasants who owned their own farms or who held leases on Crown farms were eligible to vote. In the Riksdag Act of 1723, membership of the Peasant Estate was denied those who had been prior members of some other Estates or civil servants. (Svedelius 1889, 146-147; Metcalf 1987b, 117). The point here is that the peasants were more worried about an influence from “above” rather than from “below”. 14 Swedish constitutional history before the nineteenth century has been characterised by changes between periods of a powerful Riksdag or Council, and two periods of absolutist monarchy. In this respect special interest has been paid to the Age of Liberty, (1719—1772), which has been viewed as an exceptional period even in comparison to other countries and political cultures. The Riksdag is said to have used the sovereign power, and there are many scholars who call the period "the age of parliamentarism." The Age of Liberty was the age of the Estates. The Estates chose the monarch who was obliged to follow the decisions of the Riksdag, they chose de facto the members of the Council who were responsible to the Riksdag, they had all the power in legislation and taxation, and they had foreign policy under control through the Secret Committee of the Riksdag. Moreover, there emerged two political parties. Therefore, it is legitimate, as for example Stjerquist argues, to view the political system as parliamentarism (Stjerquist 1999, 22-24). Its break with the past has been emphasised by, for example, Michael Roberts who has held that the Age of Liberty began and ended with a revolution (Roberts 1986, 1). Moreover, it has been argued that one can speak of a written Swedish constitution beginning with the adoption of the Instrument of Government of 1719, the Succession Act of 1719, and the Accession Charter of 1719. Metcalf has stated that the Riksdag viewed itself as an assembly in a sense which a later age would have referred to as a constituent assembly when it drafted and approved the constitutional texts. For the first time the Instrument of Government of 1719 was seen to have constituted a ”fundamental law”. (Metcalf 1987a, 2; Metcalf 1987b, 112-114). As mentioned in the previous chapter of this study, the ideas of 14

Another Swedish, as well as Nordic, characteristic, together with the tradition of local self-government and the tradition of peasant representation in the parliamentary politics, is the Lutheran religion and its position as an official State Church. In the local communities, there was one place where people had to foregather once a week, namely the parish church, where the orthodox Lutheran clergy maintained religious discipline, preached, and read out the proclamations of the Royal Government and the Provincial Governor (Lönnroth 1989, 91). Lutheran faith had been first established during the reign of Gustaf Vasa and the final strike against Catholicism was given in 1593 when it was decided that all Swedish kings must be of true Evangelical faith. Roman Catholicism was forbidden, and as late as 1853 six women were sentenced to expulsion for having been converted to the Roman religion. (see Verney 1957, 16-18).

144 ”fundamental law” and written constitution have usually been understood as consequences of natural law and contractual theory which came to characterise constitutional ideas in the eighteenth century. Before 1809, there was no clear distinction between Public and Civil Law. However, the importance of a written form of government had increased during the Age of Liberty, when the Estates had wanted to secure ”liberty” and exclude the possibility of an absolutism of the King. According to Jussila, the Swedish ”fundamental laws” were perhaps more fundamental than in any other European country at the time. Nevertheless, the Instruments of Government of 1719 and 1720 should be viewed as ideological heirs of the Cromwellian form of government rather than predecessors of a revolutionary idea of a written constitution. These Instruments of Government were not backed by the same revolutionary break with the past as the revolutionary constitutions in France and United States some seventy years later. (Jussila 1969, 266-267). The Riksdag Act of 1723 has been taken as the first constitutional law concerning the representation of the people. It prescribed who was to be represented and how the representatives were to be selected in the framework of the four Estates. In addition, it regulated how the Estates and the committees were to conduct their business, and how the Estates were to interact with the King and the Council. (Edén 1935, 151; Metcalf 1987b, 116). 15 To argue that the Estates had a sovereign power was problematic in the 1720, though. The term “sovereignty” had been chastised because of the Carolinian absolutism. There were some attempts to present the new political order in terms of aristocratic constitutionalism as it had been before the period of absolutism, but the new civil service aristocracy preferred to view the new political situation in terms of contractual political theory. A sign of this was a translation of John Locke’s Second Treatise on Government (Oförgripliga tankar om verdslig regerings rätta ursprung, gränsor och ändemål) in 1726. As Saastamoinen has noted, it might be surprising to find Locke’s ideas on legal and political equality introduced in order to legitimise a political system in which people were divided in estates with different political and legal rights. However, Locke’s target in his Second Treatise was absolutism, not legal social hierarchies. He never said that people should be judicially equal in civil society, nor that they should have an equal say in political matters. All human beings were equal in the state of nature. Nevertheless, the introduction of the idea of "civil society" in the Swedish language made it more accessible to a wider public than the scholarly discussion had allowed. As a consequence, the Swedish expression for ”civil society”, borgerligt sammanlefnad and its variations borgerligt sälskap, borgerligt samfund, and borgerligt samhälle took a central position in political language during the following decades to come. In addition, the adjective borgerlig became an alternative for the Lutheran term världslik (weltlich) 15 It can be noted that to be a representative among the nobles was a duty rather than merely a right. Consequently, the Riddarhus Act of 1626 had described the representation as a duty. However, a free entry to the Riksdag was confirmed in the Riksdag Act of 1723, and in the Riddarhus Act of 1726 it was stated that the head of every noble family had the freedom to participate in the Riksdag. (Svedelius 1889, 7-11, 23-24).

145 denoting a sphere of human life that was not concerned with the salvation of souls. There was an idea of a political society which exists for a non-religious reason. Of course, the older use of världslig continued, especially among the Clergy. Despite the contest over the right application of borgerligt samhälle, one thing was common to the political elite, namely that “the common people” borgerligt samhälle had no political dimension. (see Saastamoinen 1999, 15-19). 16 The idea that the society should be based on privileged estates and orders, and that political representation should be organised according to political Estates was questioned during the last years of the Age of Liberty, when the privileges of the Nobility were heatedly discussed. Anders Nordencrantz, one of the most famous radicals of the time and the one who used the term ”odalstånd” to denote the three non-noble Estates, argued for a system of representation which can interpreted as a unicameral system. However, the right to be represented was to be based on economic wealth, and graded. The legitimacy of the Estates was questioned by radical writers of the 1760s and early 1770s. ”The oppressed part of the nation” was contrasted against the prevailing rule of the Estates. ”Patriotic Sirs and Men” behind the journal Folkets röst (The Voice of the People) went so far in their radicalism that they demanded for the right to vote for all males through the Peasant and Burgher Estates. (Nordin 2000, 387-388, 410-419). What has been represented during the centuries after the institution of the Riksdag had been established? Provincial meetings successively gave way to a central institution of representation, which developed from the election meetings of the King and from the advisory herredagar. This centralising tendency can also be viewed, following Kjellén’s description of the principles of Swedish political representation, as a change from “the territorial representation” to “the social representation” (Kjellén 1915, 6). “The territorial representation” was the system of representation in which each province had its representative in a meeting of the law men. The next phase was based on the estates which took over the role of provincial representatives in different meetings of the Kingdom. According to Kjellén, the society was socially and horizontally divided into four Estates, which were represented at the Riksdag. For him, the Estates corresponded adequately with seventeenth-century society, and the opinion was still widely held in the early nineteenth century. If there were any doubts, the problem was considered merely in technical terms, not in terms of the principle. The third stage of Kjellén’s typology, “the national representation”, is the most important here. According to Kjellén, the first sign of it was the Riksdag Act of 1810 in which the members of the Riksdag were, for 16

The explanation of society was based on Natural Law rather than theocratic principles. The Natural Law was divided into three categories: the Law of God, the Law of Nature, and the Civil Law. Societal explanations dealt mainly with the Civil Law. The principle of the equality of men as proscribed in the Natural Law was then reduced to apply to the members of the society in question. This division into an ideal and a practical side of the idea of Natural Law explains also, at least to a some extent, why an enlightened ”patriot” was considered a cosmopolitan friend of humanity and at the same time expected to serve his own country. (Nordin 2000, 342-384, 419).

146 the first time, named as the representatives of the Swedish people as a whole. (Kjellén 1915, 6-8). To sum up, the changes in political representation can very roughly be described as a transformation from the representation of local interests to the representation of social interests, and then finally to the representation of general interest within the framework of the nation. This path was, nevertheless, by no means linear or self-evident. The concept of “representation” was often contested, and the changes took shape within a longer period of time, which means that different kinds of understandings of “representation” were in use at the same time. The constitutional debates of 1809-10 can be viewed more as the first serious attempt to change the principle of representation, than as a definite change in the principle.

7.3 Geijer’s two conceptions of ”national representation” When we are considering the formation of the idea of national representation and the promoting of ”the national” at the beginning of nineteenth-century Sweden, Erik Gustaf Geijer (1783-1847) is by far the most important intellectual. In 1817 He became a professor of History at the University of Uppsala, and he was a member of the Riksdag twice, 1828—30 and 1840—41. Moreover, he was the leading member of the Gothic Society and the Swedish “historical school” in the 1810s and 1820s, but he was also the one who developed a view of ”nation” in the late 1830s and in the 1840s which has been called ”liberal”. Of special interest is the fact that Geijer was both an eager supporter of an estate based system of political representation and, later on, a fervent advocate of abolishing the political Estates. 17 It has been commonplace to view the young Geijer as enlightened and somewhat radical, the mature Geijer as romantic and conservative, and the old Geijer as liberal. His famous ”defection” (avfall) in 1838 from conservatism to liberalism, as he himself called it, has supported this view. It has also been argued that his writing changed from romanticism to realism. However, the aspect of romanticism never totally ceased, and the aspect of realism had always been a part of his writing. Despite the fact that the critical tones against the Estates increased and a more positive evaluation of the lower classes became apparent, there was a strong royalist ethos in Geijer’s thought throughout his career. (Henningsson 1961, 152-153, 435, 444-445). The changes in his thought can be viewed against the changes in political ideas in the early nineteenth century. Heckscher has argued that the enlightened civil servant conservatism of the eighteenth century met new challengers with romantic 17

It has been argued that the series of lectures given by Geijer in 1816 at the University of Uppsala was the birth of Swedish nationalism. His lectures have been compared to Fichte’s famous Reden an die deutsche Nation (1806) (Hall 1998, 170).

147 ideas in the beginning of the nineteenth century. This division changed successively, and in the 1830s romanticists were on the same side with conservatives against those who introduced liberal political ideas in the 1820s and 1830s. (Heckscher 1939, 90-94, 110-111, 250-254). The state and the estates formed an organic unity in Geijer’s thought, and so did ”the national” and ”the universal”. The universal order was possible only through national units, and the national principle could only be properly fulfilled within a universal order. In the romantic thought, national and universal could be united. The people’s recognition of its nationality, its personality, was a part of general fulfilment of humanity. (see Henningsson 1961, 118; Heckscher 1939, 142). Geijer was clearly influenced by the ideas of Herder, who had a cosmopolitan aspect in his ideal of the national. Geijer stated in 1822 that ”there is an even more noble selfishness than the national one, namely the purely human” (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 463). 18 Notwithstanding this aspect of universalism in “the national”, in History writing the change from the Enlightenment to Romanticism signified in general the change from cosmopolitan emphasises to national ones. (Blanck 1918, 23, 307-308). In the first number of the journal of the Gothic Society, Iduna, Geijer declared in 1811 his view on ”the people” (folk) and ”nation”. Each folk lives not only in the present but also in its memories and through its memories. Each generation of people leaves its customs and concepts to the next one. Through these concepts and customs, through tradition, the folk becomes one and conscious of itself as a nation, which has a personality. (Geijer 1995, 129). 19 Despite obvious similarities with Burkean traditionalism, it has been argued that there was a clear attempt to promote ”the spirit of freedom”, ”civic virtues”, and ”civic activity” among the Swedish people in the programme of the Gothic Society. According to Blanck, the programme was a Nordic version of civic patriotism, in which the emphasis on ”the fatherland” and civic liberty was of crucial importance. Moreover, the condition of the Swedish nation was seen in Rousseauan manner as fallen and suffering from the vices of the culture of civilisation, which was contrasted against the condition of an ancient Nordic paradise. (Blanck 1918, 2, 31-35, 50-51, 54). In his Feodalism and Republicanism (Feodalism och republikanism), published in 1818, Geijer offered a critical discussion of contract theories as well as those who supported an eternal and static order of society. Both extremes would lead to despotism. According to him, the French Revolution was a particularly striking example of the unfortunate consequences of the contractual theory. Geijer never argued for the revolutionary view of political systems. There was not any desire for a constitutional assembly in the sense of the French 18

”Ty det finnes tydligen en ännu ädlare sjelfviskhet än den nationela, den rent menskliga nämligen[.]” (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 463). 19 “Vart och ett folk lever ej blott i det närvarande, utan även i sina minnen: och det lever genom dem. Varje generation fortplantar sig ej blott fysiskt utan även moraliskt i en annan: den överlämnar den sina seder, sina begrepp. Det är denna fortgående tradition, som i olika tider likväl alltid gör folket till ett, den utgör dess oavbrutna medvetande av sig själv som Nation; den utgör, för att så säga, dess personlighet.” (Geijer 1995a, 129).

148 Revolution, either. He was strictly against ”paper constitutions”. Instead of ”building castles in the air”, historical experiences should lead to practical improvements of a constitution. (Geijer SS II 1874, 271-276). 20 Geijer articulated his view on representation in 1822 in a longer article in which he defended the Estates as organic corporations within the state. According to him, the state and the Estates formed an organic unity. There were two categories of estates: the private estate and the public estate. The public estate consisted of education (den bildade klassen) and public life (den offentliga klassen), and the private estate consisted of labour (den arbetande klassen) as well as commerce and industries (näringsklassen). The private estate only watched out for private interests, whereas the public estate had the responsibility of the whole society. (Heckscher 1939, 141). The only right system of political representation was through the Estates. He argued against opinions which viewed ”national representation” as something opposite to government, a view which was a central argument of the French revolutionaries à la Sieyès and the nineteenth-century national liberals. Instead, the Estates formed a link between the government and the people by representing ”the whole”. The system of Estates made the political system constitutional. (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 488-489, 502). To Geijer: I stånden är staten redan i och för sig själf representerad. De uttrycka de nödvändiga former, hvari statens totala idé reflekterar sig. En egentlig representativ författning är så vida ingenting nytt, som den endast uttrycker ett statens eget erkännande af det verkliga förhållandet. Men sjelfva detta erkännande är ett högst vigtigt steg, som visar att staten kommit till insigt af sig sjelf; och konstituerat på denna egna insigt af sitt eget väsende, är den först konstitutionel. […] Häraf kan en vanlig föreställning korrigeras, som […] hör till denna stora mängd af grundlösa meningar, hvilka nu för tiden i dylika ämnen äro gängse, - föreställningen, att en national representation endast är regeringens motsats, så att af den senare, dess organ o. s. v. ingenting skulle böra ingå i den förra för att få folket rätt rent representeradt. – Ett stånd är tvärt om just derigenom en reflex af det hela, att hvart och ett i sig innefattar och framställer en förbindelse mellan regering och folk. (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 488-489). 21

Geijer was against “an indistinct” system of representation. According to him, it was a system known from the French Constitutive Assembly of 1791, in which “every citizen as such had a right to elect” and where the right to vote was personal. The problem was that had made a distinction between ”active” and ”passive” citizens. This distinction was, according to Geijer, arbitrary, 20

According to Geijer, the Medieval German peoples had two forms of political governance. On the one hand, it was considered that the princes and their subjects had a relationship which was regulated by a private law between them. On the other hand, it was also thought that the people, organised in local tings, was the source of the political power. These two principles were described in Geijer’s analysis Feodalism och republikanism in 1818. (Boëthius 1905, 215). 21 ”Sedan representationens element sålunda äro gifna, återstår deras sammansättning till et helt. Denna kan vara olika allt efter som den olika bestämmes af en nations historia, karakter, lokal och andra omständigheter. Det egentligen vigtiga och för det konstitutionella systemet, i vår tanke, allmänneligen giltiga är, att denna på ett eller annat sätt modifierade sammansättning utgår ur ståndsrepresentationen, eller ur den får sina element.” (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 502).

149 accidental, and always unfair because it was based on money and property alone. In contrast to this sort of “quantitative” criterion, there should be a ”qualitative” criterion involved. It was not possible to take property merely as a quantitative concept. This meant, in turn, that the nature, or character, of the labour should be counted as well. And the nature of labour was realised in the Estates. As a consequence, a system of representation which was based on the Estates added the qualitative criterion to the political representation. The representation was then both qualitative and personal, not only personal. Actually, money as a basis of qualification was not personal at all. To Geijer, the false doctrine departed from the idea that ”a citizen represents property”, whereas the right doctrine held that ”property represents a citizen”. Accordingly, there were different kinds of property qualities, which corresponded the differences between the Estates. The peasants had their landed properties, the Burghers their industry and capital. The public estate— the Nobles and the Clergy—had its property in office and education, and in birth. (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 502-506). When the Estates were understood as social facts in the sense of different characters of labour, it was possible for Geijer to deny the Constantian idea of citoyen proprietaire by still referring to property. Geijer viewed the English bicameral system as a variant of the estate based system, for it was based on landed property, on the one hand, and on the membership of a corporation or particular privileges in a township on the other. It differed from ”an indistinct” system of representation, which placed ”the nation” and the government on opposite sides. On the contrary, it made an organic whole even if the member of the Parliament represented ”the public” instead of a particular interest. (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 507-508). It can be noted that Geijer wanted to show that the system of the Estates made the whole, which was “the nation”. ”The nation” as an opposing force to the government was something less than the whole picture of “the nation”. The concept of ”indistinct” is of crucial importance when we try to figure out what makes ”the nation” a whole. The English political system was in Geijer’s view an example of an organic political system that was not ”indistinct”, and definitely not based on a cabinet government which was dependent on the House of Commons, as Bagehot later put it in 1867. Despite the emphasis on ”the whole”, Geijer discussed the different interests which were represented by the Estates. His point was that each Estate had several interests which overlapped with each other. A burgher, as well as a nobleman, was a land-owner; a peasant, a craftsman, and a priest had a special relationship to people in every Estate through his office. As a consequence, there was no need to change the system of political representation, for the Estates represented ”great and main interests”, not any ”isolated interests”. Partial reforms within the system of Estates were welcomed, though. (Geijer SS VIII 1875, 511). Geijer’s role as an interpreter of the coalition between the King and the people is of great importance. For example, in his studies on fourteenth century political life, he took a stand for the King against the Lords (stormännen) whose egoism and lust for power had caused the accidents of the Scandinavian Union

150 of Kalmar (Kalmarunion) which was led by the Danish King. The coalition of the King and the people was contrasted against foreign rulers and foreign aristocracy. Engelbrekt and the peasants led by him were the great heroes in this picture. The aristocracy was presented in a negative light as representatives of an egoistic Scandinavianism, although their estate interests had been useful in creating the unity of the empire. (Henningsson 1961, 310-314, 329, 340-341, 346). 22 A crucial part of Geijer’s argument for the coalition between the king and the people was that “the people” had been an active participant in the ”affairs of the fatherland”, as he put it in 1825, which meant that the peasants had had an Estate of their own in the Riksdag (Geijer 1995b, 137). Any intermediate powers between the monarch and the people were strongly opposed by Geijer. The Estates were not such powers because they were organic parts of the whole. Aristocracy, in turn, was a power which should be avoided. Geijer stated his populist view at the Riksdag in 1829 as follows: Men skulle jag uttrycka den grundsats, som framför all annan är, varit och troligen blifver fundamentet i all svensk författning, så är det denna: Svensken erkänner ingen, tål ingen emellan sig och sin konung; det vill säga: ingen som skulle förmena honom att i sista instansen i sina angelägenheter få bero af sin konungs beslut, för honom framlägga dem, säga sin tanke och höra hans. Det äldsta beröm för svensk konung är, att han låter tala med sig och hörer folkets röst. Svenska folket erkänner ej och tål ej någon oöfverstiglig, oberoende, okontrollerad mellanmakt. Det har med olyckor, lidanden, hvälfningar och blod alltid protesterat och skall protestera mot hvarje sådan, den må vara aristokrati eller hierarki, den må vara af adlig, presterlig, militärisk eller äfven juridisk natur. (Geijer SS VII 1875, 269).

For Geijer, a hereditary monarch was impartial and above all particular interests, and thus more suitable than anything else to personify the state. According to Henningsson, the fact that Geijer stated that ”the history of Sweden is the history of its kings” does not mean that he would have wanted merely to raise the cult of heroes, but instead that the kings had a central role in the development of Swedish society. 23 It is clear that he had a critical view of the Nobility and that he sympathised with the power of the kings, and that the other cornerstone of the state was made up of ”the people”. The ideal political system was a constitutional monarchy, in which the power of the monarch was balanced with the power of the people, as it had been, for him, in the ancient 22

After his ”defection” in the 1840s, Geijer had a polemic against another historian, Anders Fryxell, on the role of the aristocracy in Swedish history. Geijer was accused of having undermined and distorted the role of the Nobility. Geijer argued that is was possible to be a Scandinavianist without accepting that the Union of Kalmar signified the breakthrough of Scandinavianism. To Geijer, the political importance of national sentiments and nationalities came from the sentiments of the people, not from the aristocracy and the governments. However, Geijer distanced himself from contemporary plans for the Scandinavian union while he supported cultural Scandinavianism in the 1840s. (Henningsson 1961, 105-109, 344-348). 23 Geijer explains his statement in his article on representation in 1840. He clarifies that ”the history of Sweden is the history of its kings” was true in ”older Sweden”, i.e. during the Vasa kings and Carolinian rule (Geijer SS III 1874, 295).

151 Nordic peasant society. ”The people” was idealised, but only as long as it acted wisely and without opportunistic and egoistic manners, as had happened under the rule of the party leaders in the Age of Liberty. (Henningsson 1961, 441-442). The Clergy, too, was often critically considered by Geijer. The priests had a political role as folktribuner, but they had often misused this task. In 1837, he wrote that ”the more I study the history of Sweden, the more sinks my respect for this estate” (quoted in Henningsson 1961, 443). After his announcement of his ”defection” in 1838, Geijer wrote a letter to Hans Järta, who had been one of the men of 1809 and later on a leading conservative intellectual and a member of “the historical school”. Geijer defended his ”defection” by referring to his own historical studies. He was openly self-critical and took back his support from the system of Estates. The Estates were not viewed in a positive light; they were exclusive, factious, and sources of the misfortunes of Sweden: Hvad skall jag nu mera respectera i dessa fyra stånd, som jag i min enfaldighet ideelt construerat och upputsat, innan jag kände dem. Skall jag respektera en Adel, som blifvit Sveriges olycka, sedan den varit dess ära? – ett Prestestånd, hvars politiska bana är långt ifrån hedrande, och som kanske har i sin historia ett mindre antal utmerkta män att framvisa än mången annan Nations Clerus? – ett Borgarstånd, som Sverige i verklig mening aldrig haft, ehuru dess plats, der det skulle finnas, utmerkes genom den för landet förderfligaste hägnad af privilegier? – ett Bondestånd, sådant det vid våra Riksdagar representeras? – Jag kan det ej – Jag känner för många af deras antecedentia. En medelklass är således i Sverige mer än annorstädes ett nödvändigt postulat. (Geijer 1980, 37).

”The middle class” was the new leading category for Geijer: ”the main fact of the new times” (ibid.). 24 It was in the sense of the French tiers état Geijer understood ”the middle class”. It could bring ”the nation” together after all the inner divisions “the nation” had suffered from due to the Estates. ”The middle class” was the middling bon sens of the ”fatherland”, Geijer argued. (ibid.). 25 My point is that the emphasis on the coalition between the kings and the people made it possible for Geijer to abandon the ideal of estate representation. The only “move” (cf. Skinner 1996b, 148) he actually had to make was to argue that the Estates did not serve the whole but instead formed separate and factious powers of their own. Geijer presented this view, for example, at the Riksdag in 1840 when he defended the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution, which wanted to abolish Estate based representation. He maintained that the Estates had begun to behave like an independent state power in opposition to the government. Moreover, there were tendencies which pointed towards provincial divisions. There was a risk that the national unity, the unity that had taken hundreds of years to create, would be 24 ”Från den nyare tidens hufvudfaktum – en till öfvervägande politisk inflytelse uppstigen medelklass – har jag gått ut.” (Geijer 1980, 37). 25 ”[Mitt fädernesland] har i dess splittrade inre politiska skick mer än något annat land haft behof af en sådan medlande, i nationens bon sens och ej i dess af omständigheterna merendels allt för mycket bestämda statsinrättningar sig yttrande kraft.” (Geijer 1980, 37).

152 dissolved. 26 Moreover, the system of Estates had not been able to guarantee the stability of political life. There had never been more than fifty years without a revolution and there had been constant shifts between a despotism of the Estates and absolutist monarchs. (Geijer SS VII 1875, 317-318). As often is the case in the rhetoric for reform, Geijer employed a rhetoric of necessity in his speech. The system of general elections was going to break through; the question was whether one wanted to be surprised by it or adaptable to it (ibid. 318-319). To Geijer, the power of the King would not be jeopardised if the royal power rested its power on the law. The royal power should be executed in a ”republican spirit” (Geijer 1980, 38). Monarchist and republican theories should not be taken as enemies to each other. Instead, these two systems should meet within a constitutional monarchy. There would then be a hereditary royal family surrounded by a merited aristocracy on the top of the state, which would be based on democracy. (Geijer SS III 1874, 271-274). Geijer shared the common opinion that modern states were based on representation (ibid. 264). He described the historical formation of representation from an aristocratic council to an elected representation that was based on ”the third estate”. There had been three different systems of representation in Swedish history: the provincial representation, herredagar, and the Estates of the Kingdom. He noted that the representation of the provinces had remained alongside other forms of representation for a long time. This kind of interpretation made it possible for him to demonstrate that the system of representation that was based on the Estates was not the only option, not even historically the first way to organise political representation. (Geijer SS III 1874, 291-292, 296). The Estates had represented interests; first ”standing interests” (stående intressen), then ”material interests” (sak-intressen), which had been understood as property interests. In a Sieyèsian manner Geijer then described how ”the third estate”, although itself based on privileges, attacked the Estate privileges and thus opened the way to ”a general interest” which was represented by ”persons”. (ibid. 265-266). 27 According to Geijer, political representation should be based on personal rights: Personlig valrätt för hvarje till myndiga år kommen oförvitlig medborgare är således den grundsats jag först och främst i representationsfrågan måste vidhålla, emedan denna grundsats endast är strängt rättvis och, i min tanke, hvarken kan omgås eller förnekas. 26

”Jag fruktar dessa tecken. Kommer till det nylifvade ståndssplitet äfven splittringen af de lösgjorda lokala och provinsiela intressena, så fruktar jag för mitt fäderneslands framtid. Jag vet vilka arbeten – århundradens arbeten – det kostat Sveriges rike att besegra dessa intressen. De må lifvas så mycket man behagar, men endast under inflytande af en allmän och nationel representation, för hvars anda allt hvad i dem är oformligt äfven försvinner.” (Geijer SS VII 1875, 317). 27 ”Det belf offensivt mot de andra, ja, i den mån det ville grunda sig på privilegier, offensivt mot sig sjelf; tills slutligen den sanning framstod i sin klarhet: att allt hvad som kan kallas och är allmänt intresse bäst befordas, om det blifver hvar och en tillåtet att inom gränserna af ömsesidig rätt tillvarataga sitt eget personliga. Dermed har ock representationsfrågan blifvit återflyttad på personlighetens grund. Den hvilar, i min tanke, numera oåterkalleligt på denna grund.” (Geijer SS III 1874, 266).

153 (Geijer SS III 1874, 267).

This did not mean that society should be seen as consisting of nothing but ”atoms”. On the contrary, ”persons” made ”the whole” as they were able to feel a connection to the whole. 28 This meant, in turn, that every citizen should have political rights. (Geijer SS VII 1875, 319-320). ”The principle of persons” (personlighetsprincipen) 29 led to problems, however. According to Geijer, ”a class of proletarians” were excluded from political rights. The question was then, who was to be excluded from the political citizenship? To tackle this problem of exclusion, Geijer introduced the concept of property which was based on education and morality instead of pure material property. Earlier, it would had been based on the character of labour, as we have seen. There were then a number of legitimate criteria of exclusion and some demarcations on the equality of political rights. The Under-aged and those who did not have the lowest basic education were excluded. Male servants, by contrast, did have political rights. In addition, Geijer categorised those who had political rights into two groups: those who had an indirect vote, and those who had a direct vote. The direct vote was allowed for those who had intellectual and moral capital, of which an economic or professional position was a sign. (Geijer SS III 1874, 267-269). Women were excluded from political rights in Geijer’s model, which was by no means a surprising standpoint at that time. However, his justification of the exclusion is of special interest, for he maintained that women were above the political life and therefore not allowed to participate in it. According to him, women were to be liberated from politics. The same applied to teachers and priests, which was at that time a much more radical demarcation than the exclusion of women. Geijer’s point was that both teachers and priests, as well as women, belonged to the sphere of human education, which was a sphere of moral activity more important than politics. (Geijer SS III 1874, 262-263, 268289). To Geijer, ”the principle of persons” was a sign of the times. He presented the breakthrough of the principle at the beginning of his famous lectures at the University of Uppasala in 1844, which were published under the title On Our Times’ Inner Circumstances in Society (Om vår tids inre samhällsförhållanden) in 1845. He took as his point of departure the French Revolution and the discussions on Human Rights in the National Assembly in August 1789. It was then the corporate and Estate interests were obliged to give way to ”the principle of persons”, to something ”higher and more general”. A new era had 28 ”Man säger, att det ej är personligheten, utan det hela, som skall representeras. Men det är just genom personligheterna som det hela blir representeradt, och allt bättre representeradt i den mån personligheterna känna sitt sammanhang med det hela.” (Geijer SS VII 1875, 319). ”Personlig valrätt för hvarje till myndiga år kommen oförvitlig medborgare är således den grundsats jag först och främst i representationsfrågan måste vidhålla, emedan denna grundsats endast är strängt rättvis och, i min tanke, hvarken kan omgås eller förnekas." (Geijer SS III 1874, 267). 29 ”The principle of persons” was applied in votes of the Committees of the Riksdag since 1818 (Fahlbeck 1934, 301; Widell 1939, 22).

154 begun. (Geijer 1980, 45-47). 30 There were four sorts of opposition to the new principle, or to ”liberal ideas” as Geijer also called it. Firstly, an Estate opposition; secondly, a monarchical opposition; thirdly a religious opposition; and fourthly, a liberal opposition. The last one is of special interest, for Geijer was here critical of ”the middle class”, which tended to exclude ”masses” from its liberal ideal. Property defined a political citizen too much. (Geijer 1980, 6066). 31 Geijer’s concept of ”person” can be viewed against his ”conservative” and ”liberal” periods. During his ”conservative” period, he argued against a ”liberal” view because it bound the right of a political citizen to a certain amount of property or money. Instead, the right to participate in the system of representation ought to be based on personal qualifications. This meant that the right to represented was based on the nature of one’s work, which led to the system of Estates. When in 1838 he announced to have ”defected”, he changed the attachment of the concept of “person” from social corporations to individuals, for the Estates had lost their historical role and status. These new personalities were to create “associations” (associationer). 32 Geijer was the foremost scholar to introduce the language of “proletariat” and “socialism” in Sweden, and he warned about the gulf between ”the free” and ”the unfree” people (Geijer 1980, 72). 33 He distanced himself from ”communism” but viewed ”socialism” in a positive light, though ”socialism” was then understood in the sense of ”the principle of associations” (associationsprincipen). Geijer clearly recognised the problem of exclusion from the political citizenship. He was worried about a rule of plutocracy, a worry he shared with many others. It was often one of the main arguments of the supporters of the system of Estates or class based elections. However, plutocracy was also the menace the radicals often pictured. To Geijer, there, nevertheless, was an explanation for the role of material wealth as a criterion of political rights, for property was a sign of intelligence, a result of education. (ibid. 62-63, 73-74). A greater wealth was a sign of ”the strengthened personality” (ibid. 78).

30 ”Vi vända oss med avsky från brotten; men vi hava ej endast förbannelsser för dem, som i denna stora sak handlat och lidit för många släkten. Det var den nya tidens födelsetimma. Alltsedan hava stånds- och korporationsintressen måst vika för högre och allmännare.” (Geijer 1980, 46-47). 31 ”Denna egenhet är att dess gräns uppåt är obestämd, så att medelklassen i sig kan upptaga och i själva verket allt mer med sig förenar även de högre klassernas verkliga intressen, men däremot nedåt allt skarpare bestämmer sig och blir uteslutande i avseende på massan av folket. Denna gräns har blivit förmögenhetens, och ett visst belopp av förmögenhet, såsom villkoret för allt utövande av politiska rättigheter.” (Geijer 1980, 62). ”Men vad vore den fria konkurenssen, om den blott föra i samhället den starkares rätt? – Vad vore den firade arbetets befrielse, om den i sina följder skulle medföra arbetarens ofrihet?” (ibid. 66). 32 For Boëthius, this means that Geijer did indeed ”defect” if we think about his practical political standpoint, but he did not defect from his view on historical development and his anti-atomistic idea of political community (Boëthius 1905, 233-236). 33 It should be noted that Geijer had read the French socialists like Fourier and SaintSimon, as well as the German Lorenz von Stein (see Geijer 1980, 84).

155 As was discussed in chapter 5, the combination of citoyen capacitaire and citoyen propriétaire was, despite differences in theoretical emphasises, often used in a mixed manner. The property criterion was more or less openly legitimised by referring to “capacities”. One could hardly have capacities without being able to show properties, and conversely, one could hardly have properties without capacities. Geijer was in favour of a citoyen capacitaire, even if he expected him to have an economic position. Nevertheless, landed property was not the only, or the most important, sign of capacity. In accordance with Geijer, the political rights of the middle class were better guaranteed in states which had a developed constitutional system. However, the consequence of this was that “the middle class” had ceased to be ”the party of movement” (rörelsepartiet). It had begun to defend its position, which meant for Geijer that ”the majority of the members of the representative bodies in all the constitutional states had become distinctly conservative”. This did not mean that there would be a lasting coalition between ”the old conservatism” and ”the new conservatism”, only that ”the middle class” had become a new mediating power. (Geijer 1980, 79-80). Geijer’s conception of ”the middle class” as ”the party of movement”, even if it had become more conservative, was a part of his view on the history of civilisation, which was characteristically progressive. ”The middle class” marked a new order in society, the order which found its main political institution in representation: Betraktar man denna nya samhällsbildning, så visar allt, att hon ännu har mycket ogjort; och därföre kan göra anspråk på en framtid. Märkbar är hon överallt, även där hon ännu icke har någon laglig stämma. Varest en representation fattas, är det hon, som förnämligast fordrar den. (Geijer 1980, 81). 34

Connected to the new idea of representation, there was another new idea which was characteristically future-oriented, namely the idea of ”nationality”: Den första konkreta gestalt, som den på det politiska gebitet inträdande, i början abstrakta, personlighetsprincipen har antagit, är nationaliteten. Den är i denna betydelse mera än en blott känsla och vana, den är tillika insikt av det öppnade och frigjorda sammanhanget emellan enskilde och staten, av alla medborgares betydenhet i avseende på det allmänna bästa, av allas berättigande och förpliktelse att därtill bidraga och däri deltaga. Denna insikt vilar på den nya utvidgningen av de politiska rättigheterna. Den är inträdet av den nya statsenheten hos folket. (ibid. 85).


Cf.: ”[M]edelklassen numera föreställer den, genom intelligensens växande andel i arbetet, rörlig blivna förmögenheten inom samhället. Det är därföre som den gör anspråk på, att redan dess förmögenhet är ett bevis på bildning. Den innefattar nu gemensamt alla de så kallade högre klasserna i samhället, det vill säga, alla de medborgare, vilkas materiella välstånd företrädesvis ger dem ledighet och tillfälle till förvärvandet av bildningens fördelar. Därföre gör den överallt en sådan grad av förmögenhet till ett villkor för utövande av politiska rättigheter, och är alltför benägen att fastställa detta villkor såsom det utetslutande enda.” (Geijer 1980, 166).

156 “Nationality” was more than merely a sentiment. It was the link between an individual and the state; it was every citizens’ right and obligation to participate. It meant political rights, which created the unity of the state within the people. Geijer held the same view of the influences of the French Revolution on national ideas as many commentators before and especially after him, for he argued that the revolution had opened the new idea of nationality, yet it was the war against Napoleon that cemented the idea in general (Geijer 1980, 85-86). However, in Sweden, ”the nation” was first born as early as during the struggles against the Union of Kalmar, from Engelbrekt to Gustaf Vasa (ibid. 98-99). The unity that was lost during the rule of the Estates—or rather the rule of parties—and Gustaf III, was recreated in 1809. For Geijer, the constitution of 1809 had stated that the Riksdag represented the people in its entirety. It was not particularly radical standpoint, for the supporters of the Estates, as he himself had done earlier, held the same view. He meant that there was an idea of overcoming the representation of particular interests: Nästan på fäderneslandets ruiner hade 1809 års Ständer sammanträtt, för första gången på länge, med känslan därav, att de representerade ett folk. Den författning, de mitt under farorna hade givit Sverige, bar, med de bibehållna grunddragen av det gamla, spåren av denna anda. (Geijer 1980, 115).

There is an interesting temporal tension in Geijer’s interpretation on the constitution of 1809. On the one hand, he stated that the constitution was created to serve the future, to promote human rights (människorätt). On the other hand, it was also a reversion to the past, to the national unity. (ibid.). This kind combination of cyclical and linear views on time was then linked with a strongly linear and progressive view o ”public opinion” and, finally, ”representation”. The progress of society took care of the development; there was no use to deny the new form of representation: Folken begynna känna sina inre angelägenheter såsom sina egna, och vilja däri hava en röst. Med eller utan folkets deltagande i representation och lagstiftning gör denna röst sig gällande, och ingen regent kan för den tillsluta sitt öra. […] Framstår denna allmänna anda även trots bristen på konstitutionella former, huru mycket mer, där sådana former redan finnas? Alla representationer erfara detta inflytande, alla utan undantag, de må vara huru som helst beskaffade. De söka fåfängt att tillsluta sig därför, eller att förhindra de beståndsdelar i dem, som mest med folket stå i beröring och närmast från det utgå, att vinna en allt större vikt. Det är vår tids fortgående representationsförändring, som varken behöver avslås eller bifallas; emedan den gör sig själv. Vissa regeringar söka att leda den, i stället för att förneka den. (Geijer 1980, 116, emphasises mine).

Here we have an extremely important example of the combination of the new idea of ”nation” and political representation. ”The nation”, though in itself to a great extent a past-oriented concept, was put to serve the demand for parliamentary reform in the future with the help of the concepts of ”public opinion” and ”progress”. It shows the temporal tension the pro-reform rhetoric of ”nation” and ”patriotism” contained. Moreover, Geijer gave us a fine

157 analysis of political rhetoric. He himself was, of course, very rhetorical when he accused others of acting demagogically. To Geijer, all parties tried to perform in the name of the freedom of the people: I våra dagar stå de politiska passionerna alla under demagogiens inflytelse; även i de läger, där skenbarligen helt andra fanor svaja. Det kommer av folkens nyvunna politiska vikt, som ingen i själva verket kan förneka. – Det finnes numera ingen politik, som ej agerar i frihetens namn. Även maktens och privilegiernas försvarare nödgas åberopa det. Eller kan väl det fenomen undgå betraktarens öga, att legitimister och ultraister överallt synas räcka radikalerna handen, eller åtminstone försöka att tala dessas språk, så snart fråga är om att stävja medelklassens uppstigande makt? Och att i de representationer, där en klass nedanom medelklassen redan äger stämma, denna sista klass företrädesvis väljes till operationsgrund, endera för att i den väcka en emot medelklassen fientlig egen stånsanda eller ock för att genom ytterligheten av demokratiska fordringar skrämma? (Geijer 1980, 157).

It should be noted that Geijer clearly positioned himself as an advocate of ”the middle class”. Those below it should follow under its lead, not create its own ”spirit of estate”. “Democracy” was still a pejorative concept. In order to strengthen his rhetoric of necessity, he argued that the reform of representation was a question of ”national independence”. Independence could be maintained only when it was both ”inner” and ”outer” by character. 35 The history of Swedish representation had shown that the changes in representation had taken place only through revolutions, and that was dangerous: Man måste medgiva, att en representationsförändring hittils aldrig i Sverige skett, utan i och genom en revolution; och revolutioner på vårt sätt ha vi redan haft alltför många. En representationsförändring är i sig själv en akt av nationell självständighet. Självständigheten för folken kan vara både inre och yttre; men bådas samband är oupplösligt[.] (Geijer 1980, 158).

Although Geijer admitted that there were signs of new ideas in the 1809 Instrument of Government, he still viewed it as highly problematic. The problem was that a member of the Riksdag was either a representative of a ”Swedish nobleman, or clergyman, or burgher, or peasant, and not of a Swedish citizen” (Geijer 1980, 163). It did not help to attempt to bring the spirit of citizenship to the Estates by reforming them. It should have been the other way round, i.e. that ”the citizen” (statsborgare) was the point of departure. Geijer referred to the memorandum of the 1810 Committee on the Constitution which had stated, as mentioned, that ”the controversies between the Estates” had ”often divided the nation”. (ibid. 164). The argument here was that the Estates were no longer based on the original principle of the constitution. “The nation” should take back its original right: 36 35 The ”inner” independence can be understood not just as independent citizens, but also as independent representatives, for Geijer rejected the idea of an imperative mandate (see Geijer SS III 1874, 270; Geijer 1980, 171). 36 ”Svaret är: vår representation vilar icke mera på denna princip i dess fordna bemärkelse; och, att stånsprincipen, genom de av grundlagen medgivna medel, skall byta

158 Ty ingenting synes mig säkrare, än att svenska adeln, som så länge agerat såsom nationalrepresentation i Sverige, numera endast kan giva sin representationsrätt tillbaka i nationens hand[.] (ibid. 169).

Again, “the golden past” should be brought back. The future was made of the past. Geijer was an adamant proponent of the figure of the free and equal Nordic peasant in the historiography of early nineteenth-century Sweden (e.g. Kettunen 1999, 260). The combination of the king and the people made it possible for Geijer to change his attitude towards political representation without abandoning his basic interpretation of Swedish political culture. As Trägårdh has noted, it was possible for Geijer to be ”conservative” and ”liberal” at the same time, for his view on the historically rooted Swedish political tradition remained much the same (Trägårdh 1993, 190-191). ”The nation” was in a way an unproblematic concept for Geijer. It had its historical origins in the struggles against Danish rule in the fifteenth century. The Kings and the people had formed the two elements of a totality which had been woven together by the organic Estates. When the Estates had lost their organic character, the connection between the two elements was made by individual persons in free associations led by ”the middle class”. The coalition between the King and the people was the steady foundation in his thought, the coalition that was organised through organic Estates or associated individuals. There are no clear signs of the revolutionary idea of ”the nation” in Geijer’s thought. One should not, as he put it in 1818, ”build castles in the air”. However, ”the nation” gained a new meaning during his radical 37 period. ”The nation” became associated with ”the middle class” and with the idea of progress in a manner which is reminiscent of Sieyès’ conception of ”the third estate”. There was, after all, if not a break with the past, at least the beginning of a new era, as had happened in France during the Revolution. In Sweden, in turn, the new era was best realised by incorporating the ancient egalitarian heritage into the framework of ”national representation” that was based on ”persons”. It can be concluded that the system of Estates was, for Geijer, ”national representation” because it was Swedish and it accorded with the society. The latter version of his ideal representation, in turn, was ”national representation” because it was ”national” in the meaning of being nonprivileged, and thus in principle non-exclusive. However, the inclusion in ”the nation” that was based on people’s education and morality, not to mention their sex, was a variant of the division of the people into ”active” and ”passive” citizens and thus a continuum of the problem which Sieyès had already om plats och underordnas den medborgerliga principen, […] det är vår konstitutions egentliga grundförutsättning: det är dess även i bokstaven uttalande anda.” (ibid. 168). 37 Indeed, ”radical”, for it describes perhaps more accurately his thought, rather than ”liberal” which easily suggests ideas on free and autonomous individuals and to ideas on the separation between the state and civil society.

159 struggled with. Despite Geijer’s worry about the condition of the proletariat, the question was how to include individuals in “the nation” and at the same time keep the masses out of it.

7.4 “Liberal” initiatives to “national representation” Geijer was not the only one who argued against the Estates with the idea of “national representation”. After the Committee on the Constitution of 1810, the first concrete proposal in which the idea of “national representation” without the Estates was presented in 1830, when a Noble representative C. H. Anckarswärd and a lawyer J. G. Richert – who was denied access to the Riksdag because he did not belong to the Estates – published their proposal for parliamentary reform. Their Proposal for National Representation (Förslag till National-Representation) was directed against the Riksdag being ”divided into the Estates”. It was argued that Sweden had a representative constitution in name only (Anckarswärd & Richert 1830, III). The authors argued that the current representation did not correspond to the real meaning of ”the representative constitution”. In other words, the name of the political institution was not at issue, rather its correct meaning. This is an example of political concepts being contested. The concept of ”representative” was by no means a neologism or an invention as such. The purpose of the authors was to demand for a new meaning for it. A current application of the term, which was based on the representative corporations, fell short of the real content of the concept: Förgäfves väntar man af corporationer eller corporationers ombud hvad Konung och Folk äro berättigade att fordra af Nationens representanter. (Anckarswärd & Richert 1830, IV).

According to the proposal, the representation should be unicameral, yet only in principle, for the proposal followed the pattern of the Norwegian Storting which was divided into two chambers, such that the lower and greater chamber elected the members of the upper chamber from amongst the members of the lower. 38 As the well-known explanation went, there should be two chambers in the Riksdag so as to avoid precipitate and hasty decisions. Another guarantee against too radical consequences was that the franchise should be weighted in favour of the most wealthiest men who would get one-third of the votes. A great number of those with the right to be represented would have an indirect vote. Those who could have been expected to have ”the interest in affairs” (intresse för saken), ”leisure from labour” (ledighet från hvardagliga arbetsbestyr), 38

Richert visited Norway in the summer of 1827 and he knew well the Norwegian constitution (see Borell 1948, 18-19).

160 and ”prosperity” (välstånd) would have a direct vote. (ibid. XII-XIV). There was thus a division of political citizens in two categories in the proposal. The rhetorical strategy of the authors of the proposal was characteristic of liberal reform supporters of the nineteenth century. The figure of Progress that demanded the reform; ”Time”, ”progress”, and ”opinion” were all temporally directed to the future and demanded for a change of political representation. 39 Stagnation was considered dangerous, as was the case, for example, in the progressive (sic) Whig rhetoric in early nineteenth-century Britain, as well. It was also argued that: Det oändliga framskridandet, den oupphörliga utvecklingen af nya och ändamålsenliga former, är lif och tillvext: det eviga stillaståendet, den andelösa orubbligheten i hvad som upphört att verka och gagna, är död och förrutnelse. (ibid. V). 40

The language of organic growth was not absent. The orientation to the future did not mean that the tradition should be neglected. On the contrary, there was a need to take the temper and the customs of the people as well as its earlier experiences into account in the progress of ”the nationality”: [H]varje Folk, som ej vill förlora sitt värde af sjelfständighet och nationalitet, måste oafbrutit gå framåt, men framåt i den riktning, som Folkets lynne, seder och förut tillvarande förhållanden antyda. (ibid. VI).

There was no intention to create “a new Sweden”, rather to recreate it moderately: Vi hafva ej velat skapa något nytt Sverige: vi hafva utgått från hvad som är, för att, med måttliga förändringar och utan all omhvälfning, komma till hvad som, efter vår mening, bör vara. (ibid.). Hvad som ej funnits, eller som upphört att finnas inom en Stat, kan ej genom grundlagar eller pergamentsbref tillskapas eller återställas. Stats-elementerna äro organiska krafter, bärande lifsprincipen inom sig sjelfva: de kunna ej, såsom döda maschiner, frambringas eller eftergöras af menniskohand. (ibid. XIV).

Anckarswärd and Richter were against a revolutionary creation of something radically new. Instead, they argued for an organic view of political institutions. This argument was directed against an aristocratic upper chamber. There was a clear rejection in the proposal against creations which often have been called ”paper constitutions”. The Norwegian pattern and the idea of ”national representation” as opposed to the representation based on the Estates was also promulgated in a short-lived paper Nationalföreningen (National Union) in 1834. 41 The most important goal was to get rid of the division within the representation: 39

”Tiden går fram och opinionsområdet vidgas.” (Anckarswärd & Richert 1830, V). ”Historien afteknar menniskoslägtets steg framåt till ljus och frihet.” (Anckarswärd & Richert 1830, V). 41 The publisher and editor of the paper was Carl Peter Agrelius. 40

161 Men vi önskade, att denna [lagstiftande] makt ej bestod af splittrade krafter, utan utgjorde någonting helt, att således ståndsrepresentationen upphörde och lemnade rum för en verklig nationalrepresentation. Hvar och en redlig och oegennyttig patriot kan ej annat, än med bedröfvelse se fortfarandet af ett sådant söndrat samhällstilstånd. Ett svenskt storting bredvid det Norska måste vara ett föremål för hvarje fosterlandsväns önskningar. (Nationalföreningen 2/1834).

The paper had a strongly negative attitude towards the Estates in Swedish history. Following the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution of 1810, the paper argued that the division into the Estates had been the cause behind the most of the accidents the country had suffered (Nationalföreningen 1/1834). Every true ”patriot” was to commit to the well-being of the fatherland and work for the united people. ”The people” should be raised from its degraded condition to ”a clear and true concept” (ibid.). This task was offered first of all to ”the enlightened and patriotic middle class” which was ”the fairminded part of the nation” and ”thinking part of the nation” and which aimed at the common good with their ”associations” (Nationalföreningen 1/1834; Nationalföreningen 4/1834). If Sweden was to become ”a liberal state”, then the examples of Norway and England should be followed, the paper argued. Other positively evaluated examples were the birth of the republic in North America and the French Revolution, for these events had accelerated the spreading of political freedom. (Nationalföreningen 1/1834; Nationalföreningen 2/1834). Thus, the idea of ”national representation”, which was based on political citizens co-operating in free associations, was presented against the old system of the Estates. Geijer was the most important propagator of the idea, but the examples here and, for instance, the newspaper Aftonbladet, which started in 1830 with its ”liberal” politics, show that Geijer was not alone with his idea of a thorough change in political representation. The proposal of Anckarswärd and Richert fell in the Committee on the Constitution of 1834. However, reform plans were getting more support within the Riksdag at the end of the 1830s. By 1840, a coalition against King Karl Johan and his government was created. Proreform representatives had the majority within the Peasants and the Burghers, anti-government feelings were running high in the House of Nobility, as well. The Committee on the Constitution of 1840 became to be dominated by members who wanted a greater reform of parliament, amongst them Geijer. After a defeat in the three upper Estates in 1840, an expanded Committee on the Constitution proposed in 1841 a modified bicameral representation in which the upper chamber would be elected by the lower. According to the proposal, the political Estates would be abolished. The pattern was, again, fetched from Norway. The census was higher than had been proposed in 1830, 10 riksdaler instead of 5. The right to vote would have been graded. During the next Riksdag in 1844, the Bill was rejected by the Nobles and the Clergy. (e.g. Verney 1957, 37-39; Carlsson 1987, 190). Geijer, who made a reservation to the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution, proposed that there would be universal male suffrage, restricted only by general demands for basic

162 education. The elections would be indirect, though. Moreover, propertied and educated people would have twice as many votes as the others. There was also a high line of demarcation which limited the right to be elected. (see Borell 1948, 72). There was a new attempt to reform the Riksdag in 1848. The King, Oskar I, who was supposed to be in favour of a liberal reform, had set up the Committee on Representation in 1846 which prepared a reform which was considered rather ”liberal”. The political Estates were to be replaced by a sort of class elections, which would be divided between the towns and the rural areas. In this bicameral model, the upper chamber was reserved for the wealthiest men. Moreover, the King himself planned to appoint one-third of the members of the upper chamber. In fact, the proposal satisfied neither ”the liberals” nor ”the conservatives”. In 1848, after the disturbances in March in Stockholm, the government was ready to present a Bill according to which the upper chamber was to be elected by provincial councils. This solution was planned by Count Spens and it served as a model for De Geer in the 1860s. The Bill was clearly planned to placate the political nervousness in the country and it was defeated by all except the Burgher Estate in 1851. It was found too radical by the Nobles and the Clergy, not radical enough by the Peasants. In 1851, an expanded Committee on the Constitution put forth a proposal inspired by “Junkers”. The proposal brought the non-noble persons of standing into the four-estate structure and created a separate body of riksnämnd in which there would be representatives of all four Estates. All the Estates except the Burghers voted the proposal down in 1854. Thereafter, no important proposals were made in the 1850s. (see Verney 1957, 38-39; Carlsson 1987, 190; Förhammar 1975, 59-92). In the late 1840s, Swedish radicals, who were encouraged by the radical currents in Europe, prepared a proposal for a unicameral representation which had as its point of departure a universal male suffrage. 42 The proposal was the outcome of two meetings which were held in 1849 and 1850 in the town of Örebro. 43 All adult males over 21 years of age except soldiers, servants, and those under the poor surveillance were proposed an equal vote. C. H. Anckarsvärd, the other man behind the 1830 proposal, argued against the abolition of the property criterion and thus made the difference between the old and new radicalism explicit. (Christensen 1997, 150, 243-247; Borell 1948, 237). Demands for universal male suffrage had also been presented in the 1830s and 1840s in radical circles around the staff of Aftonbladet and some other minor 42

In the turbulent days of the February Revolution, a general franchise to all men over 25 years of age was proposed in the Reform Association in Stockholm. The proposal was made by a journeyman Sven Trägårdh, who belonged to a secret Scandinavian Society in Stockholm which had contacts with a group of German communists who were in contact with Marx and Engels in London (Christensen 1997, 150, 234; Ragnerstam 1986, 98-102, 115-116, 150, 229-238, 275-280; Gamby 1978, 115, 133, 150-158, 168-170, 185-194, 202, 208211; Gamby 1983, 22; Bäckström 1971, 43; Bäckström 1972, 29-34, 82-85; Lindberg 1968, 246249). 43 The third Örebro meeting was held in 1853 without any particular consequences (Christensen 1997, 251).

163 papers. In particular, a former member of the Riddarhus, Gustaf Hierta, with his Medborgaren and Stockholmsbladet as well as with his articles in Lars Johan Hierta’s Aftonbladet, had been a champion of radical democratic ideas. Gustaf Hierta was the ideologist behind radical opinions and proposals that were put forward in the Peasant Estate, and he was one of the leading forces behind the Peasants’ commitment to the Örebro proposal in 1851. He was against any bicameral solutions in the organisation of the representation, and he argued against any system of representation that was based on the Estates or classes. (Christensen 1997, 88-96). Johan Peter Theorell, a moderate liberal, viewed the Peasant Estate as the core of the people’s representation, as the national assembly. To him, the Peasant Estate should become a modern variant of the third estate of revolutionary France. However, there was no republican goals in his politics. Instead, his ideal was a constitutional monarchy which combined a popular representation with a responsibility of the ministers to the parliament, and which had a limited power of the monarch. The political Estates did not have any room in his model. However, political rights should be limited to ”educated citizens”. The ”masses” should be excluded from the vote. The best way to guarantee this was to bind the right to vote in the landed property with a graded scale. (Christensen 1997, 77-88, 166-168, 229-231). The radicals of the 1840s often argued for republican political institutions within the framework of the monarchy. There were differences among ”the liberals” in regards to the question of how far the ”principle of persons” should be extended, and how much the wealth should be counted. Many of ”the liberals” were careful not to give the uneducated masses political voice, although they viewed the actual system of representation as impossible to support. The rejection of the system of the Estates did not usually mean that Swedish political tradition was condemned, for the picture of the free and egalitarian past was commonly accepted and employed within the demands for political reforms. Common to ”the liberals” was that a new political representation they demanded was considered ”national” as opposed to ”divided”.



8.1 “The principle of persons” and representation of interests As mentioned in the previous chapter, “the principle of persons” had become a political catchword at least since the 1830s when the “liberal” press and, as the most important intellectual authority, Geijer had begun to speak in terms of free and individual persons who should associate themselves in with free associations so as to break loose from existing corporate ties. In fact, De Geer defended the need of the reform by referring to Geijer, and by stating that ”the principle of the Estates should be changed over to the principle of the citizenship” (De Geer 1865, 60). According to De Geer, the change had already taken place. It only needed ”the new state” to have ”a new form” which would fit to its ”content”. Accordingly, it was only ”a phrase” to claim that ”the four important interests within the state” would be represented by the current four Estates (ibid.). The role of Geijer was important, for he was an authority to whom both sides of the reform debate referred so as to strengthen their arguments. The fact that Geijer had introduced ”the principle of persons” in Sweden clearly disturbed the Councillor of Justice, J. A. Södergren, who actively partook in the conservative campaign against the Bill, and who tried to argue that the principle of persons was not applicable at any time, and certainly not at such times as now. He also emphasised the Christian aspect of his thought (Södergren 1865a, 87-90). The idea of civic trust was linked with the idea that it was ”the nation” that was represented. For example, a Burgher representative G. C. Witt, who was one of ”the Björcks” within the Estate (see Ekman 1966, 205), argued that the best guarantee that ”the nation gets worthy representatives” was that ”the

166 nation self chooses them” and thus elects persons who have ”the trust of the citizens” (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 151 [Witt]). 1 Thus, it was secondary to know what a representative owned; it was enough to get the most of the votes in an election (ibid.). 2 The joint elections should express the opinion of the nation, as baron Hugo Hamilton, who was a member of the Central Committee for the reform, stated: De samfäldta valen skola tvärtom, efter vår tro, blifva ett uttryck af nationens, ej blott vissa klassers opinion[.] (Hugo Hamilton 1865, 76).

Politisk Tidskrift stated that “every member of the society” should be able to feel oneself as “a citizen within the state” instead of belonging to a particular caste or guild. The current incorrect representation was the reason why there was no real public spirit in the country: Någon allmän anda, i sannt politisk mening, finnes icke ännu i vårt land[.] […] Såsom en af de förnämsta orsakerna till denna bristande allmänanda anse vi vår felaktiga representation. […] Första vilkoret för en sådan andas uppkomst är det, att hvarje samhällsmedlem känner sig vara till och betyda något, icke såsom tillhörig en särskild kast eller skrå, utan såsom medborgare i staten. (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1861, 59-60).

The main protagonist of the Bill was, of course, De Geer, who appealed to both principled and practical, as well as meta-historical, reason as being behind the need of the reform when he defended the Bill at the House of Nobility on March, 1863. Firstly, De Geer referred to “justice” which was independent from immediate practical benefits. It was not right that there were many who were left outside the right to be represented, and that among those who were currently represented there was not a fair share within the representation. 3 Secondly, not only justice but also wisdom called for the reform. It was wise to keep the peace in society. The representation must satisfy at least a fair portion of citizens, so that the pressure of those who were dissatisfied could be controlled and placated. 4 Thirdly, the historical development had by-passed 1

”Största säkerheten, att nationen får värdige representanter, har man just deruti, att nationen sjelf väljer dem och således skickar personer, som hafva sina medborgares förtroende. Det är denna grundtanke, att det medborgerliga förtroendet skall bestämma personerna, hvilken går igenom hela representationsförslaget och såsom ett gyllene band sammanhåller alla dess delar – det är denna grundtanke, som gör grundvalen säker.” (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 151 [Witt]). 2 ”[E]nligt det nya representationsförslaget löser man frågan, hvad den blifvande representanten är, helt enkelt med det riktiga svaret, att han är en man, som vunnit sina medborgares förtroende, som fått de flesta rösterna vid valet. Frågan, hvad den blifvande representanten har, är härvid alldeles underordnad[.]”(Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 18621863, 151 [Witt]). 3 ”[S]å kan likväl rättvisan, oberoende af den omedelbara praktiska nyttan, hafva sina fordringar i ett samhälle, hvilka icke ostraffadt kunna åsidosättas. Och rättvisan kräfver verkligen en förändring af vår nationalrepresentation, dels derföre att nu från deltagande i densamma uteslutas många, som äro fullt behöriga att utöfva representationsrätt, och dels emedan missförhållanden ega rum emellan de nu berättigades inbördes andelar i denna rättighet.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 211 [De Geer]). 4 ”Men icke blott rättvisan, utan afven klokheten påkallar representationens ombildning. Ett lands representation kan nemligen icke med trygghet för samhällets bestånd göras

167 the Estates. 5 (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 211 [De Geer]). It seems that the rhetoric of wisdom watered down the argument for justice. It should also be noted that De Geer’s argument was directed against the conservative opponents of the Bill, not against the radical ones. De Geer felt that there was no serious threat against the proposal coming from the “democratic” side of the struggle. A specialist on constitutional matters, J. J. Nordström, took part in the conservative campaign against the Bill. In the autumn of 1865, published under the pseudonym ”Thomas Frisk”, an extensive pamphlet was circulated in which he presented an academic arsenal of arguments against the Bill. As a former professor of the History of Law in Finland, and as a former secretary of the Committee on the constitution, as well as a member of the Clergy Estate between 1853 and 1863, he was a political actor whose arguments were given serious consideration even by those on the side of the supporters of the Bill (see Lindman 1981, 91-92). Nordström held that the representative body should bring together the different elements of society and give a picture of society as a whole. This was also how the Estates had functioned in Swedish history. (Nordström 1865, 53). 6 This kind of mirroring view on representation, together with the opinion that the Estates had expressed the real social interests during centuries, made it possible for Nordström to agree with the demand for a gradual reform due to changed social interests. Nevertheless, the Estates were still social realities, even if political privileges were unacceptable. As a matter of fact, Nordström was for the reorganisation or abolition of the Noble Estate (ibid. 61). His view on the basic idea of political representation was yet not changed. It was not individuals who were to be represented, but society as a whole. A right to vote was not a personal right, but an assignment from the whole society to those who were best qualified for the task: Det är icke individerna, såsom sådana, som representeras, utan samhället eller folket kollektivt. Valrätten är icke en personlig rättighet, utan ett uppdrag af hela samhället, anförtrodt åt dem, som lagen förklarat dertill vara qualifierade. (Nordström 1865, 66).

In the autumn of 1865, it was obvious that the Estates had lost their political legitimacy. The pressure for the joint elections was strong, and during the final struggle over the reform, the Estates were more or less ruled out as a bättre eller annorlunda, än att den tillfredsställer åtminstone ett så stort antal medborgare, att de missnöjdes påtryckning kan af dem emotstås[.]” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 211 [De Geer]). 5 ”Den historiska utvecklingen har sedan en längre tid gått ut på ståndens upplösning, mest utom representation, men äfven inom densamma.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 211 [De Geer]). 6 ”Men för att i verkligheten representera samhället, sådant det lefver och rörer sig i olika verksamhetskretsar och riktningar, måste representationen i sin sammansättning upptaga de elementer, af hvilka samhället utgöres och sålunda i sig återgifva en bild af samhället i stort. Det är en sådan bild, den svenska stånsrepresentationen företer vid den tid, densamma såsom stadgad form för samhällets representation framträder. Ståndsväsendet, utveckladt under tidernas fortgång, hade blifvit i samhället rotfast.” (Nordström 1865, 53).

168 ground for representation. Even if the destiny of the Bill was still unknown, and the future of the political Estates still open, the opponents of the Bill were forced to invent something else. To introduce classes was, and had been, an effort to defend the existing order rather than an innovating search for something particularly new. It was argued that the natural development would have been that the system of Estates had been transformed into a system of class elections (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 128 [Söderberg]). Such a system would have been a defence against ”corruption” and ”agitation” and thus good for ”the fatherland” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 137 [Annerstedt]). It was also argued that the Estates could have been saved if they had been willing to make concessions early enough (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 109 [Tegnér]). The opponents of the Bill tried to introduce a combination of a joint election and a class based election. It was a way to go “in accordance with the times” and yet maintain the needed guarantees in favour of the existing power relations. Different interests and their ”natural” organisation in society, as well as the idea of the division of labour, were used to legitimise the need of classes. For an apologist of an existing political rule, it was now possible to be against the representation by the Estates. According to Nordström: Jag delar likväl fördenskull icke Eder åsigt om den nu hos oss bestående ståndsrepresentations principiela företräden, utan tror deremot, att ett väl afvägdt klassvalssystem ej allenast erbjuder samma fördelar som en representation efter stånd, utan ock medför den i många hänseenden vigtiga fördelen, att utesluta den för det närvarande så mycket ogillade sjelfskrifvenheten. Jag är böjd att gå ännu längre, eller att biträda en organisation af den ena kammaren efter samfälda val, och af den andra kammaren efter klassval. Klasser bland samhällets medlemmar äro att anse såsom naturliga organisationer. De hafva sin grund i arbetsfördelningens förnuftiga princip, utan att fordra slutenhet. (Nordström 1865, 93).

Nordström argued that, although the Estate privileges might disappear, the social interests would remain. Class elections would watch over the great and dynamic interests of society, instead of individual and egoistic interests which ”an atomistic principle of persons” would promote. (ibid. 94-95). Consequently, there was no sign of abandoning the organic view on society, which he set against ”an atomistic” view in Nordström’s argumentation (see also Lindman 1981, 99-100). It should be noted that Nordström’s view that it was society as a whole that was to be represented was not strange to those who supported the Bill. Actually, it was always maintained that the whole was to represented. The question was, rather, how the picture of the whole was to be collected. It was common to appeal to the organic development of political institutions in the arguments which were put forward against the Bill, and in favour of class elections (e.g. Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 137

169 [Annerstedt]). 7 Different classes were taken as naturally organised interests within the state and society. Proponents of this sort of view usually labelled the opposite view as ”liberal”, ”democratic”, and ”republican” understanding of state, and held that they were ”atomistic”. Instead, the representation should represent ”great interests” and ”natural main groups” of the society (Södergren 1865a, 92). 8 The support given to the classes was thus a modified version of a common corporate view of "the state". It can be noted that the model Södergren argued for was a version of the proposal the Committee on the Constitution of 1848 had made (Södergren 1865a, 101-103). The organic view on society and, consequently, on representation, was expressed in its most radical form in the thought of Cristoffer Jacob Boström (1797-1866), who was the leading philosopher in the country, a professor at the University of Uppsala and thus an important educator of the civil servants (see Liedman 1980, 265; Liedman 1991; Liedman 1995, 44). Boström was asked to participate in the conservative campaign against the Bill, and he answered to the request by publishing a pamphlet in which he argued that the Estates, as organic corporations, did not have any right to decide upon the abolition of themselves. Because each representative of the Riksdag was a representative of a particular Estate, his task was to watch over the interest of the respective Estate and not to act according to his own will (Boström 1865, 15). Boström’s argument was based on his view on representation, according to which the state is a living and organic thing, a reasonable will and person (Elvander 1961, 43-49; Ryding 1959, 84). Boström had been influenced by Schelling and Hegel and he had developed his philosophy to a speculative neo-Platonic idealism according to which reality was comprehensible only through philosophical speculation. The highest “reason” was separate from an empirical world of phenomena. (Liedman 1991, 105-130; Elvander 1961, 40-42; Kilander 1991, 4445; Lindberg 1981, 126; Heckscher 1939; 68; Persson 1991, 1111-1122). 7

A good example of such arguments can be quoted in the speech held by Bishop Annerstedt at the Clergy Estate the twentieth of March in 1863: ”Allt lefvande måste utveckla sig, om det ej skall dö. Så ock samhället. Nya banor öppnas, nya former bildas, och i samma mån, som detta sker, bör representationen gifva akt derpå och tillegna sig de nya krafterna. Men likasom sjelfva förändringen endast småningom försiggår, så bör ock inympningen af de nya skotten i den gamla stammen ske endast i den mån, de visa sig sunda och lifaktiga. På detta sätt utvecklar sig det bestående långsamt, men oafbrutet och säkert; så och endast så låter det gamlas, det bepröfvades fasthet och styrka förena sig med det nyas rörliga liflighet och hoppfulla fortskridande. Så hafva långsamt, stilla, nästan omärkligt men oafbrutet de samhällsorganismer utbildat sig, hvilka bestått genom sekler. Hafva Rikets Ständer försummat detta samhällsarbete? Hafva de försummat att tillegna sig de uppkommande nya samhällsclassernas krafter, bildning och erfarenhet? Nej!” (PresteStåndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 136 [Annerstedt]). 8 ”En högre utveckling af de statsrättsliga lärorna, af begreppen om stat och statens ändamål, betraktar icke staten såsom ett aggregat af en mängd atomer, der blott siffran, blott numeriska förhållanden skulle gälla och allt räknas efter hufvudtalet. I staten vill man finna en för befrämjande af mensklighetens högre mål tillkommen lefvande organism, sammansatt och uppehållen af lefvande krafter, verkande i särskilda riktningar, hvilka, utgörande naturliga hufvudgrupper af statsmedlemmarne, innehafva de platser, som med mer eller mindre konstlade privilegier varit åt de gamla slutna klasserna upplåtna. Dessa naturliga hufvudgrupper finnas öfverallt, antingen man betraktar den stora korporationen, staten, eller den mindre, kommunen.” (Södergren 1865a, 92).

170 According to Boström, the state was “the public society”. In addition, there were several “private societies”, such as, for example, families, municipalities, private corporations, and estates. These “societies” created a hierarchical and harmonic organism (Boström 1865, 7). The representative of the highest “society” was the monarch, who was derived from God. A mediator between the public and private “societies” was the Nobility, which was the highest representative of the “private societies”. The idea of the state, “the reason” (förnuft), was indivisibly represented by the monarch. It was clear that Boström rejected the possibility of individual representation, for even the Estates were, according to him, dealing with private interests and thus were not given any legislative power. There was only one real representative in a state: Vi säga Representanted; ty folket i staten kan lika så litet, som hvarje annan moralisk personlighet, hafva representanter in plurali. Det skulle i annat fall hafva flera capita rerpesentative eller hufvuden, af hvilka det ena möjligtvis ville hit, när det andra vill dit, och det skulle således då snarare uppträda såsom en hydra eller ett vidunder, än såsom ett förnuftigt väsende. (Boström 1865, 6).

After such an extreme position, it might seem somewhat surprising that Boström hailed the Swedish representation as the best possible. Yet, to praise one’s own political tradition has not been at all uncommon during ages, as we have seen in the case of Burke, who, nevertheless, was not a state idealist but rather a conservative empiricist. To Boström: Den gamla svenska Ståndsrepresentationen, när den är möjlig, såsom den under secler har varit hos oss, är den enda rätta och förnuftiga folkrepresentationen, eller den enda, som svarar mot sitt begrepp och sitt ändamål, samt derföre ock den enda som verkligen förtjenar sitt namn. (Boström 1865, 19).

This kind of attitude towards the representation by Estates did not help much against the Bill. Rather than having been actively used in the conservative campaign, Boström’s view illustrated the attitude of the academic teaching at Uppsala. However, it was not such static learning as it might seem. After the reform, Boström’s successor, Professor Carl Yngve Sahlin, was able to revise the Boströmian picture of ideal representation quite easily, without rejecting the basic principles, by stating that municipalities had become the highest “private societies” instead of the Noble Estate (Kilander 1991, 47). There were certain problems with appealing to the “common interest” or to the interests of “the whole” on both sides of the reform debate. The apologists of the old system were forced to refer to different interests within society in order to argue against “the principle of persons”. Moreover, it was argued that ”the principle of persons” was ”a principle of egoism” (e.g. PresteStåndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 249-255 [Agardh]). Those who were willing to speak in the name of “the whole” and “persons” ended up in difficulties with the demarcation of the right to vote. It was sometimes difficult to refer to the rise of the new social interests which demanded the reform. The pro-reform side used the language of organic society, as well. Although the purpose was to

171 give the impression of the whole, the rhetoric of organism easily fell back into the language of particular interests. De Geer maintained, in his statement in the minutes of the Council of the State, that the task of a representative was not to be ”a guardian” (målsman) of different classes, but, instead, of the interests of all. Therefore there was no other choice than to create the representative body through joint elections: I sjelfva verket är det icke heller representantens uppgift att vara målsman för skilda klassers, utan för allas intressen, och med antagande deraf återstår ingen annan grund att vid representationens ombildning följa än den af samfälda val. (Central-Komité 1864, 19 [De geer]).

J. A. Södergren, who was amongst the most active in the conservative campaign, obviously had this in mind when he argued that an assembled national representation is like ”a forum” in which all the interests of the society had their ”guardians” (målsmän). However, ”a guardian” did not mean, according to Södergren, an advocate who watches over merely a particular interest, but rather a guardian who by virtue of special knowledge can bring together a common interests of the whole. (Södergren 1865a, 96-97; Södergren 1865b, 2-3). 9 Nevertheless, there was a problem in applying the idea of representing the interest of the whole in this kind of reasoning. In order to be able to argue against the demands for joint elections and ”the principle of persons”, Södergren was forced to emphasise the differences of the interests between persons in different material conditions. He pointed out that, if the masses would be given an equal vote, then the interests of the minority would be endangered and even left without consideration (Södergren 1865a, 100). 10 The task of the representative body was to bring together different interests and make them into a one. The organic view on society made it possible to claim that there was a right way to collect and construct the common interest of the whole. The organic view of representation has its consequences in relation to the independence of a representative. It was stated in the Riksdag Act of 1810 that the Estates did not represent themselves but instead the Swedish people. This was emphasised by Södergren who in a Burkean manner described the representation in terms of “virtual representation” (see Pitkin 1967, 173). According to Södergren: 9 ”Man må nu väl kunna begagna uttrycket så, att ledamöterne äro ’målsmän’ för de särskilda detaljernas intressen, fastän de i ett stort och gemensamt intresse afgöra allt. Icke äro de derföre att anse såsom ensidigt sträfvande advokater eller förmyndare.” (Södergren 1865a, 97). 10 ”Vi vete dernäst, att olikhet i materiella förhållanden nödvändigt föder af sig olikhet i intressen. Vi veta visserligen, att hvar och en borde sätta sina enskilda intressen efter de för landet allmänna, gemensamma och nödvändiga; men vi veta ock, att menniskonaturen är så ofullkomlig, så bristfällig, att dels icke alla i hvarje fall förmå att rätt fatta det allmänna intresset, för att kunna efter dess kraf ordna och begränsa sina enskilda önskningar och syften, och dels att icke alla, äfven om de inse detta, vilja derefter foga sig, utan handla efter egna intresset; att dygdens välde (’le regne de la vertu’) icke skall nu hos oss kunna realiseras bättre, än det lyckades för de fransyske sämhälls-ideologerne under förra århundradet.” (Södergren 1865a, 100).

172 Valrätten till nationalrepresentationen är en delegation från samhället, från staten, från folket; ett af samhället å alla dess medlemmars vägnar åt valmännen under moralisk ansvarighet uppdraget politiskt förtroendekall. Detta uppdrag gifves en gång för alla, genom samhällsförfattningen, till de samhällsmedlemmar, som befinnas i vissa bestämda kategorier, såsom till personer i förmögenhetsställning efter en uttsatt grund, eller till innehafvare af vissa yrken och befattningar, hvilka antagits såsom behöriga qvalifikationer till ett sådant uppdrag. Den som till följd häraf väljer ombud till nationalrepresentationen, utser icke derigenom ett ombud som skall representera honom ensam; det valda ombudet är en representant för folket. Sålunda förklarar 1 § i svenska riksdagsordningen, icke att stånden representera sig sjelfva, utan att de representera svenska folket. Efter denna uppfattning kan rätteligen ingen samhällsmedlem sägas vara icke representerad derföre, att han icke sjelf får lägga en voteringssedel i valurnan. Det är en irring i begreppet då man ordar derom, att ’vår nationalrepresentation är ett ofullständigt organ för den representerade delen af folket’. Hela svenska folket är representeradt; - valmännen, så spridde de äro i långt skilda orter, utgöra gemensamt ett medel till åstadkommande af denna representation för hela nationen. (Södergren 1865a, 94-95).

The main point here is that, according to Södergren, it could not be claimed that the Estates did not represent the people adequately, for a representative was a representative of the people by virtue of the trust he (sic) had been delegated. That someone was a delegate meant that he was trusted to act independently without any binding mandate, i.e. imperative mandate. There was then a combination of two aspects of representation in his argument which could appear contradictory. On the one hand, the organic view of the Estates, or certain classes, presupposes that representation is about representing social interests. On the other hand, the idea of a delegated trustee contains a rejection of an imperative mandate. Now, the rejection of an imperative mandate, strictly speaking, cannot be combined with the idea of interest representation. There is no room for deliberation if the interests are said to be literally represented. This is why the organic and corporative view on state was needed. It was then possible to argue that the interests made the organic whole, and that a representative was not only a representative of an interest, but the whole nation. The language of ”interests” was not absent from the pro-reform argumentation, either. Rather, it was used as a critique against the Estates, for it was maintained that the Estates did not represent the interests of the society adequately. For example, Politisk Tidskrift referred to ”the new interests” which were not represented by the Estates. More specifically, changes in industries and labour made the old representation outdated (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 49). According to the Central Committee for the reform, the Estates were not in accordance with times because of the changes in society. Differences between different classes had become less obvious and less important due to increased education in society. This meant, in turn, that the common interest of the whole was best found through a co-operation of ”all particular parts”. There were no doubts that the goal would be a common one. What was in serious doubt was that the Estates, or some formal class divisions, would be able to bring about

173 this common interest. (Central-Komité 1864, 12). As the expression ”all particular parts” (alla de särskilda delarne) shows, there was still something left of the idea of particular interests. It can be noted, moreover, that when De Geer argued in favour of the municipalities as a ground for the elections to the First Chamber, he referred to local interests, which were best represented by the municipalities (De Geer 1865, 61). There was a combination of the rhetoric of particular interests and general interest in the description of the need of the reform in the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution of 1863. The formation of new social interests was the justification for the notion of the general interest, which should include the new interests. All this was happening “in accordance with times” (tidsenligt). The rhetoric of interests was by no means rejected; it was rather used to legitimise the need of ”the general”. A joint representation would represent all particular interests better than the Estates of classes. (KU 7 1863, 78). 11 Behind the statement, there was an idea of a self-harmonising process in society. This process was not possible if the old privileges were maintained. Professor H. L. Rydin, who was a political scientist at the University of Uppsala, and one of the relatively few academic supporters of the Bill, published two extensive pamphlets in September 1865 (Ekman 1966, 103, 124, 151, 237). 12 In his Betraktelser i representationsfrågan (Reflections on the Question of the Representation), Rydin declared that he had given up the idea of class representation due to the practical problems its application would create. According to him, there was no principled difference between class elections and joint elections, since both were based on the idea that the society should be represented as its whole. Rather, the difference was that while joint elections were based on the idea that there was one united interest of society which could be collected through civic minded citizens who had enough capacities to be represented, and who would be represented without any divisions into classes or Estates, class elections were based on the idea that the united interest of the society was a sum of special and particular interests of society. (Rydin 1865a, 25). The point in Rydin’s argument was that the Estates as well had originally 11

”Stånden, som, då de uppstodo, representerade alla de större samhällsklasserna och gåfvo åt hvardera ett kraftigt skydd mot ingrepp af någon eller några bland de öfriga, hafva förlorat denna allmänlighet, sedan nya talrika samhällsklasser uppkommit med samma befogenhet, utan att likväl hafva kommit i åtnjutande af samma rättigheter. Likaså har behofvet af skydd åt särskilda samhällsklasser försvunnit i samma mån som en mera allmänt spridd bildning, i förening med en mångfaldigare utveckling af samhällsorganismens särskilda delar, utjemnat klasskilnaderna, spridt ett klarare ljus öfver allas rättigheter och tydligare visat, att särskilda delars förkofran på andra delars bekostnad är oförenlig med det helas väl, samt att följaktligen detta ej kan varaktigt beredas annorlunda än genom alla delarnes samverkan för ett gemensamt mål. För att vara tidsenligt, måste således hvarje försök att kostruera en folkrepresentation gå ut på att befordra en sådan samverkan och icke längre hufvudsakligen afse att genom noga afvägda motvigter hålla det hela upprätt.” (KU 7 1863, 7-8). 12 There were 39 professors and academic teachers who expressed their support of the Bill in the autumn of 1865 at Uppsala. The address created dissatisfaction among the conservative opponents, and led to a number of critical articles in Wäktaren and Nya Dagligt Allehanda. Among other things, the conservatives wanted to emphasise that the majority of the professors in the country were against De Geer’s proposal. (see Ekman 1966, 236-237).

174 been based on the idea of personal civic right, not of any social interest. 13 It was only after the concentration of the monarchical power that the personal interests had been devaluated ”material interests” (sakintresse). By referring to Geijer, Rydin argued for the emancipation of ”the spirit of association”, and the replacement of the Estates with associations as the ground for political life. Moreover, the Estates were to be dissolved because they actually consisted of different persons with different backgrounds, and thus different interests. To create electoral classes which would represent specific particular interests would be as impossible as it has been to keep the Estates pure from different interests. Persons who brought together different social interests had been found in every Estates and the same would be the case in every class. As a matter of fact, Rydin questioned the superior ability of the Nobility to watch over the well-being of the fatherland. The misfortunes of the country during the Age of Liberty were used as an example of that. The rule of Estates during the Age of Liberty gave reason to question the royalism of the Nobility, as well. (ibid. 10-23). Rydin played with History. The most striking feature of the reform debate was that, in order to be able to argue convincingly for or against the Bill, one had to ground one’s argument with references to the past, i.e. to the domestic political tradition. It was important to be able to show that one’s purposes accorded with the positively evaluated parts of history, and that the other side was in fact referring to unlucky periods in history or had misunderstood the character of the period in question. Moreover, there was a strong tendency to refer to the “original” state of affairs in the debate. It was important to be able to show that one’s current political goals were in accordance with the golden past, i.e. with the ancient freedom of the Swedes (and other German peoples' as well). The point was to try to redescribe the history. This is what Rydin did. He re-described the history of the Estates in a manner which showed that the Estates were not originally intended to represent particular social interests, as was commonly understood. On the contrary, the Estates had been based on a civic trust. The representation of social interests came along later with the rise of the monarchical power (ibid. 10). Like all other participants of the debate, he, too, held that there had been an egalitarian and free political culture at the beginning. The role of the provincial assemblies, which were formed in 1862 and which functioned as electorates to the First Chamber in De Geer’s proposal, was scrutinised against the tradition. Those who supported the Bill often wanted to claim that the provincial electorates accorded with the tradition, and thus were the legacy of the ancient local meetings. For example, a member of the De Geer’s government, minister Carlson, argued that the medieval corporations no longer represented the people adequately. It did not mean, however, that he would have denied a traditional and organic view on representation. For him, 13

”Betraktar man ståndens uppkomst och historia, finner man, att deras uppgift varit, att göra personlighetsprincipen gällande eller m. a. O. Häfda den personliga förmågans personliga rätt.” (Rydin 1865a, 10).

175 the modern state was build on municipalities, and the provincial representation was of ancient origin and not based on foreign examples. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 325, 331 [Carlson]). 14 Accordingly, to construct a representation on the old provincial ground could not be regarded as neither unhistorical nor anti-national (Rydin 1865b, 110). The point was to show that the provincial representation was older than the Estates and, even more importantly, of domestic origin. Nordström, in turn, argued that the new provincial assemblies were by no means comparable to the ancient provincial meetings (Nordström 1865, 74). During the final debate at the House of Nobility, De Geer rejected the claim that society would be merely an aggregate of individuals. To him, society was an organism. However, the old form of this organism had lost its content (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 186-187 [De Geer]). 15 The possibility for De Geer to appeal to the organic view of society, despite his criticism against the Estates, was based on his interpretation on the provincial self-government in Sweden. The municipalities made the organic part of the national representation: Vårt land, som genom kommunernas sjelfstyrelse åtnjuter decentralisationens fördelar, eger ock i dessa kommuner en naturlig, lefvande grund för en organisk bildning af national representationen. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 187 [De Geer]).

There were at least two good grounds for De Geer to emphasise the provincial self-government as a part of the national representation. Firstly, it was an often praised foundation of Swedish political culture. Secondly, the new municipal law in 1862 had reorganised the local political representation and thus made it possible for De Geer to base the bicameral Riksdag partly on “federal” grounds. The municipalities were the new organic limbs of society. For example, Professor Ribbing, a Boströmian from Uppsala, saw a possibility to an organic continuity in the proposal due to the role of local municipalities in the representation (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 157, 164-166 [Ribbing]). The role of provincial representation was also positively evaluated in the meaning of bringing the local interests together and as a safeguard against political parties. It was argued amongst the opponents of the Bill that the provincial representation, Landstinget, would be politicised due to its role as an 14 ”Landskapsförfattning är och hos oss urgammal och vida äldre än Stånden. Den är icke, såsom dessa, bildad efter utländska mönster, utan af rent inhemskt ursprung och öfverensstämmande både med vårt lands natur, så olika i olika orter, och med dess historia.” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 331 [Carlson]). 15 ”Hvad som gör vår Ståndsförfattning med rätta så kär för tänkaren är, att den framställer samhället såsom en organism och ej såsom ett blott aggregat af individer, sammanhållna af yttre godtyckliga band. Men den praktiske statsmanne får icke nöja sig med endast en vacker form. Han måste se till, att formen också verkligen har det innehåll, den förutsätter. […] Ingen kan förneka, att tidens mäktiga ström oemotståndligt verkat och alltjemt verkar upplösande på Stånden, såväl i afseende på de privilegier, hvarmed de af ålder omgärdade, som i sjelfva grunden för deras tillvaro. […] I jemnbredd härmed hafva de allmänna begreppen menniska och medborgare gjort sig allt mera gällande.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 186-187 [De Geer]).

176 electorate to the First Chamber. To this, it was answered that local interests were stronger than political ones (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 141 [Dahm]). Thus, politics was pejoratively understood. If something was political, it meant that it was in conflict with the general interest. However, De Geer defended his proposal by arguing that the municipalities “stood closer to politics and had more with the common good to do than the classes” (De Geer 1865, 61). Consequently, it was possible to have a positive view of politics, if it was understood in terms of collecting local interests together.

8.2 Separation of powers, bicameral representation, and parliamentary government In his statement in the minutes of the Council of the State, De Geer explained the need of a bicameral legislative body. His point of departure was that “the national representation” should express the opinion of “the majority of the politically thinking part of the nation”. However, this opinion might be choppy. Therefore some guarantees which secured that the opinion was lasting were needed. In order to “avoid too hasty decisions and secure the rights of the existing”, the legislature was to be divided into two chambers. According to De Geer, every legislative assembly, like any other human power, needed a counter-power which was as strong as the power in question: Utgående från den grundsats, att en nationalrepresentations nödvändigaste egenskap är att vara ett sannt uttryck af tänkesättet hos majoriteten af den politiskt tänkande delen af nationen, men att detta tänkesätt, med alla sina vexlingar, icke bör hafva makt att göra sig gällande, förrän visshet vunnits, att det utgör majoritetens öfverlagda och varaktiga tanka; samt att en lagstiftande församling, liksom hvarje annan mensklig makt, behöfver vid sin sida en jemnlike för att icke, förr eller senare, urarta till ett envälde, som sätter sin egen maktfullkomlighet framför sanningens och rättvisans, afser förslaget att å ena sidan från valrätt till representanter icke utesluta andra oförvitliga medborgare än dem, hos hvilka något politiskt intresse icke kan förutsättas, samt att flertalet af de väljande lemna den afgörande öfvervigten, men att å andra sidan, i likhet med hvad som allmännast erkännes lämpligt, fördela representationen i två kamrar, på ett sätt, som på samma gång förekommer förhastade beslut och tryggar det beståendes rätt. (quoted in Central-Komité 1864, 19).

Two sides of the moderate character of the proposal can be noted here. On the one hand, a clear exclusion was introduced when the position was self-defined as ”the majority of the politically thinking part of the nation” and when those who ”cannot be supposed to have any political interest” were excluded from the right to vote. On the other hand, the division of the representative body into two chambers made an exclusion possible within the parliament. It might seem that this possibility was ruled out, for the chambers were to be equal in power and based on “the whole people”. However, a difference in character

177 between the chambers was intended by introducing different qualifications and procedures of collecting the members into each chamber: [U]tgå, enligt förslaget, begge kamrarna från hela folket, under det en nödig karaktersskilnad emellan kamrarna blifvit sökt genom stadgande af olika förfaringssätt för hvardera kammarens bildande. (ibid.).

Despite the epithet “the whole people”, the First Chamber should function as ”an expression of the enlightened way of thinking”. Moreover, it should represent ”the conservatism of property”. That remuneration was not allowed for the members of the First Chamber was meant to show that a representative should not be only economically well-off but also has a real interest in the general good. (ibid. 23-24). A bicameral parliamentary system has usually been considered a transitional stage between absolutism and democracy, and it has been linked with ideas of constitutionalism and the balance of powers. It had its culmination during the nineteenth century. The idea of the separation of powers was in itself old one and it can be found in various ideas of mixed governments. Montesquieu is the most often referred authority in this matter. But he only argued for the separation of powers and the representative system in general. When the view that the people were represented in parliament became familiar, something more was needed in order to maintain the balancing power between the King and the people. The task of the upper chamber of a representative body was to deliberate and prevent hasty decisions and consult between the two powers. It should be noted, however, that although the bicameral system was theoretically developed and widely practised in the nineteenth century, it did not mean that it necessarily was the one and only next step to be taken (Nilsson 1994, 23-24). There were two theorists to whom De Geer wanted to refer in his defence of the Bill: Guizot and Tocqueville. In short, Tocqueville gave support to the idea that there was a need to create the lower chamber that accorded with the demands of the progress of democracy. Moreover, Tocqueville’s De la Démocratie en Améque had shown how an upper chamber could be created on federal grounds. Guizot, in turn, was used to legitimise the general need of the separation of powers. By quoting Guizot’s Histoire des origines du gouvernement représentatif, De Geer argued that every power which did not have its equal counter-power tends to become absolute. A political system should be constructed in such manner that political institutions were depended on each others and that they were equals in power. In fact, De Geer used the example of Guizot to legitimise the position of the First Chamber in another way than merely by referring to its role as a conservative guarantee – which he also acknowledged. The point was to argue, moreover, that the upper chamber was not to be chosen by the monarch. Had the King appointed the members of the First Chamber, then the chamber could not give support to the King if it was needed due to the internal dependence between the two institutions. (De Geer 1865, 6-13).

178 One of the main arguments of the apologists of the old system was that there were not enough guarantees for the separation of powers between the two chambers in De Geer’s proposal. Many opponents of the Bill claimed that the difference between the characters of the chambers was not significant enough. Consequently, there were not enough guarantees for the separation of powers between the King and Parliament. It was claimed that the Riksdag would in practice become unicameral and thus too strong against the government and the power of the King. A parliamentary rule would follow. It was thus important to watch over the composition and the power of the First Chamber. According to Nordström, for example, the proposal did not fulfil the claimed idea of bicameralism. Because the chambers were meant to meet simultaneously, and because there were common votes, the Bill would lead to a unicameral system with two departments rather than to a real bicameral parliament (Nordström 1865, 67). This was not, of course, what Nordström wanted. He shared the common mistrust of unicameral parliaments. However, a positive evaluation of a unicameral system could be given to the old system of the Estates, which, according to him, could be regarded as characteristically unicameral. It brought together – in accordance with an organic view of political institutions – the multitude of opinions into a united one (ibid. 57). Nordström, too, argued that in every constitution it was necessary to have a counter power to any political power. As we have seen, the reference was often made to Guizot, but it was also rhetorically purposeful to quote more radical political thinkers in order to show that the separation of powers really was needed. Nordström referred also to John Stuart Mill’s view that it was the basic principle of every constitution to have an opposing power to every ruling power, and that in a democratic constitution there should be an element of resistance towards democracy. (Nordström 1865, 69; see also Lindman 1981, 105-106). According to Nordström, the two chambers should be constructed in a different manner from each other, and they should be based on different people (Nordström 1865, 97). Professor Agardh, who was a botanist from the University of Lund, argued that it was important to find a middle-way which combined an individual and an institutional representation. General elections ought to be linked with the system which represented the interests of the institutions and functioned as a guarantee against the egoism of majorities. The Bill did not answer properly to these requirements, Agardh concluded. The First Chamber was planned to be built on all too plutocratic principles, the difference of characters between the chamber was too insignificant, and the Second Chamber was too exclusive. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 249255 [Agardh]). So, the opponents of the Bill often claimed that the First Chamber would become too plutocratic, the Second Chamber too exclusive and based on an arbitrary census. The arbitrary census would only bring about hatred and disturbances (Södergren 1865a, 28). Many conservatives held that the votes should be weighed rather than counted. It was commonly worried that the gradual scale of votes in the elections to the First Chamber would turn into per capita elections in the future. The census was, according to the Clergy members

179 of the Committee on the Constitution of 1863, arbitrary: ”a building build on sand”. “The democratic elements” would try to obliterate it, which would create a pressure on the constitution in the future and cause the loss of freedom: [Penninge-strecket) saknar inre styrka, och skall derföre stå i grundlagen såsom en utmaning till de uteslutna demokratiska elementerna, att försöka dess utplånande. När stormen emot den på sådan grund uppförda byggnaden begynner – och den kan icke länge uteblifva – då faller den, ty den var byggd på sanden; och då är vårt land icke lägre fritt, utan bundet, bundet antingen af magten uppifrån, som för fäderneslandets räddning måste taga väldet i sin hand, eller af magten nedifrån, som af andra orsaker tager hand om fäderneslandets öden. (KU 7 1863, 28).

That the census would bring about “the loss of freedom” can be viewed in a light of “an apologist” whose aim is to describe the present situation in favourably evaluative terms. It was meaningful to use the concept of “freedom” since it was both a generally positively evaluated political concept, and attached to the traditionalist understanding of Swedish political condition. The other side, i.e. the supporters of the Bill, certainly were careful not to maintain in the first place that there was no freedom in the country. De Geer made it clear in his statement to the minutes of the Council of the State that there was no intention to widen the right to vote in any radical manner. On the contrary, those who ”cannot be presupposed to have any political interest” were excluded from the vote and thus from ”the politically thinking part of the nation” (quoted in Central-Komité 1864, 19). During the final debate at the House of Nobility in December 1865, De Geer stated that some ”lower categories of people” were not intended to be included among those who had a right to participate in the construction of the representation. Instead, the goal was to create a ”more fair distribution” of ”the forces” that already existed within the representation. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 189 [De Geer]). 16 Moreover, he assured his critics in a newspaper article that the census was chosen in a way that the demarcation below should not be moved (De Geer 1865, 54). In another article, he stated that people who were disturbed by material anxieties, and who thus lacked leisure time and capacity to undertake political activity, should be left without a vote (De Geer 1865, 7). According to De Geer, ”the real labourer” (den egentliga arbetaren), who, without any capital and higher intelligence was bound to physical labour, was totally excluded from the right to vote both according to the current Riksdag Act as well as according to the proposed Bill (De Geer 1865, 62). He admitted that it was potentially dangerous to exclude ”the real working class” (den egentliga arbetarklassen). However, the danger was far less in Sweden than in most of the 16

”[D]äremot nu hos oss endast är fråga om att, utan rubbning af konungamaktens förhållande till representationen, tillvägabringa en rättvisare fördelning af de krafter, som redan finnas inom representationen, och att der inrymma några nya, icke några lägre”, kategorier af medborgare, om hvilkas inrymmande alla äro ense och hos hvilka ingen befarar någon samhällsvådlig syftning.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 189 [De Geer]).

180 other countries, due to the insignificant amount of the population living in the cities and towns. Consequently, the Peasants that were represented in the current, as well the supposed, representation were the securing link between physical labour and the intellectual capacities. According to De Geer, the Peasant Estate was strong enough to defend itself against the threats of communism. That the workers would get their vote some day was evident for him. However, Sweden should wait till other countries showed the way. The purpose was to be ready when the day came. (De Geer 1865, 14, 62-63). He denied the possibility that the Bill would endanger the peace in society and the power of the King. The examples in other countries, although they lacked, according to him, the habit of political freedom which was characteristic to Sweden, had shown that a democratic step could be taken. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 220 [De Geer]). Yet, democracy was one of the greatest dangers of the age: Jag är föröfrigt icke den, som förnekar demokratiens vådor. Jag anser dem tvärtom vara bland de största af dem, med hvilka vår tid har att kämpa. Men dessa vådor förebyggas icke genom att uppställa samhällets högre klasser såsom fiendtliga makter emot de lägre, hvarigenom dessa sednare endast starkare manas att vädja till styrkans rätt; utan derigenom att man uppkallar och liksom tvingar alla högre och ädlare krafter att intränga i massan för att upplysa och förädla henne, och sålunda utbreder den folkets politiska uppfostran, som är konungamaktens och frihetens säkraste värn. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 220 [De Geer]).

There was a clear paternalistic tone in De Geer’s speech. “Democracy” was pejoratively evaluated concept. However, it was hard to deny its centrality in the future. The purpose was not to set the higher classes against the lower, but rather to “enlighten and refine” “the mass”. The safest guarantee of freedom and the power of the King was “the political education of the people”. Again, “freedom” was used in order to legitimise the proposed action. De Geer acted as “an innovating ideologist” when he associated the cause of reform with the maintenance of “freedom” and “the power of the King”. It was clear that De Geer was forced to defend the idea of census as well as its application in his Bill. He admitted that the census was not a perfect solution to draw the line between those who had the right to choose their representatives and those who did not. However, it was not any plutocratic interests the census was meant to serve. Money and property were taken as a criteria to preserve the right to be represented for educated and independent persons. The purpose was to exclude the uneducated, not the poor: Hvad förs angår andra Kammarens sammansättning, så skulle den vara helt och hållet lagd i penningintressets händer endast derigenom, att en viss census är bestämd för valrätt. Vi medgifva, att användandet af census utvisar en ofullkomlig lösning af folkrepresentationens svåra problem, men vi bestrida, att detta användande sker af intresse för penningen. Penningen tages här endast till hjelp på samma sätt som man begagnar ett ämne för att chemiskt afsöndra en oanvändbar bottensats. För den som alldeles saknar både förmögenhet och inkomst är det nemligen nästan omöjligt att förvärfva och bibehålla den bildning och det oberoende, som erfordras för politisk myndighet; och hvad man åsyftar med det i den europeiska statsrätten så allmänna

181 användandet af en låg census, såsom vilkor för utöfvande af politiska rättigheter, är att i bildningens intresse utestänga den fullkomligt obildade, men alldeles icke att utestänga den fattige, för det han är fattig. Man kan visserligen med skäl säga, att syftemålet på detta sätt icke fullständigt vinnes, ty huru man än må draga strecket, komma många öfver detsamma, som äro lika obildade som mängden under strecket, och tvärtom äfven många under strecket, hvilka väl skulle försvarat sin plats ofvan detsamma. (De Geer 1865, 52).

De Geer noted that the most dangerous struggle in a modern society was that between poverty and wealth. In the Bill, the explicit purpose was to give the power to ”the middle classes”. The exclusion made by the census was meant only against those who were ”the worst favoured individuals”. (De Geer 1865, 59). As mentioned in the previous chapter, Geijer was the first to pay attention to the consequences of capitalism in Sweden. De Geer actually referred to Geijer when he continued his argumentation and held that the Estates should give way to “citizens” (ibid. 60). Before the common breakthrough of the principle of universal suffrage, one of the most urgent problems of political life in the nineteenth century was how to legitimise a census. Usually, there was a sort of equation between a propertied wealth and human capacity, as the examples of Sieyès, Constant, and Geijer have shown us. It was the pattern De Geer choose to follow, as well. Property also served as a criterion to capacity in the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution of 1863: För öfrigt, om också förmögenhet visserligen icke kan anses liktydig med förmåga, förutsätter dock dess vårdande eller förvärfvande i de flesta fall egenskaper af vigt äfven för den offentlige mannen, och en inkomst, vunnen genom skicklighet, ihärdighet och omtanka, förutan hvilka egenskaper den i allmänhet svårligen kan förvärfvas, och hvilka äro lika väsendtliga för den offenliga, som för den enskilda verksamheten, bör kunna antagas utgöra ett lika giltigt valrätts- och valbarhets-vilkor[.] (KU 7 1863, 9).

The ideas of citoyen propriétaire and citoyen capacitaire were more or less fused with each other. The main representative of the latter was no doubt Guizot who put the emphasis on “capacity” instead of “property”. John Stuart Mill also had certain affinities with the idea of “capacity” when he constructed the graded scale of votes according to education, although he is better known to us as one of the first champions of the principle of universal suffrage. The fact that the census was lower for those who owned real estate properties than for those who earned moneyed salaries was based on the physiocratic idea that landed and real estate properties better guaranteed public peace and tranquility than salaries of “the mobile workers”. Accordingly, it worked against the menaces of socialism and communism: Till de förslagets motiver anförda skäl, hvarföre emellertid streccket för fastighetsegare blifvit satt något lägre än för andra, skulle kunna läggas, att de vådor som af en alltför långt utsträckt valrätt af många befaras – såsom kommunism och socialism – enligt erfarenheten vida mindre äro att härleda från fastighetsegare än från de rörliga arbetarne. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 216 [De Geer]).

182 Moreover, those who had properties had a more secure and independent position in society, as De Geer stated in the minutes of the Council of the State: Med afseende derpå, att egandet af fastighet i allmänhet kan antagas dels utvisa en mera tryggad och oberoende ställning än den vanliga daglönarens, äfven om denne för tillfället eger god förtjenst, och dels medföra ett stort intresse för samhällets förkofran och välgång, hvarigenom äfven en ringa fastighets värde kan betydligt ökas, har likväl valrätten blifvit till förmån för fastighetsegare längre än i fråga om andra[.] (quoted in Central-Komité 1864, 21).

It should be noted that despite the assurances that the peasants were, with their landed properties, the guarantee of peaceful order in society, properties in towns and cities were favoured at the cost of those in the rural areas. De Geer explained that the purpose was to avoid the dominance of the peasants in the Second Chamber. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 217 [De Geer]). The Bill was commonly criticised due to the prospect that the peasants would gain a dominant position in the Second Chamber. Consequently, De Geer faced then a rhetorical problem with “the peasants”. On the one hand, he needed “the peasants” in order to assure the opponents of the Bill that there would not be any disorders after the reform. On the other hand, he had to demarcate the influence of “the peasants” in future representation. The democracy in America, as described in the books of Tocqueville, was a usual point of reference when the Bill was discussed. The American political development was hard to deny even if one was against the reform in Sweden. A Clergy member, Dean Palmlund, chose to distinguish European and American political cultures from each other in order to discredit the legitimacy of the American pattern. To him, the American democracy, based on the power of the masses, i.e. numbers, was impossible in Europe, because of the different labour and competition relationships in the old continent. In Europe, there had been ”a rule of education” (bildningens herravälde) for ages. Not even “the third Estate” of the French Revolution had changed this fact. An agricultural and industrial labour was not possible to connect with a level of education which would be high enough to bring about conditions for ”the sovereignty of the people”. In Sweden, the reform dealt with ”the democracy of the middle class”, not ”the mass”. The lower class would never have the ability, nor the wealth, for gaining political authority. This was why Palmlund did not fear any democratic consequences of the Bill. The peasants were aristocratic enough not to abolish the census in the future. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 316322 [Palmlund]). During the autumn of 1865, it was common to argue for a more inclusive right to be represented in the Second Chamber, and at the same time oppose the Bill on conservative grounds. A Clergy representative, Doctor Söderberg, put forward an idea that every independent man of 25 years of age should be given a vote in order to avoid future disturbances and struggles for an enlarged suffrage. The support given the Bill by the workers associations in Stockholm and Örebro were, for Söderberg, a sign of the strategy of ”Swedish subjects” to continue the struggle even if the Bill passed. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-

183 1866, 351 [Söderberg]). Moreover, there was a considerable amount of social conservative critique against “liberal” and “plutocratic” tendencies of the proposal in the conservatives’ rhetoric. According to Professor Agardh, the representation should be as a doctor who heals the illnesses of the body of society. These illnesses were ”pauperism”, ”communism”, ”strikes”, and ”emigration”. The reason for these was ”the press of the capital against the right of labour” (capitalets förtryck af arbetets rätt). The proposed representation would exclude ”the real labourer” (den egentlige arbetaren) from the Second Chamber, while the First Chamber was to become characteristically plutocratic. Agardh took Geijer as a reference in his critique of capitalism, although he came to different conclusions with regard to political representation. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 255-256 [Agardh]). In fact, social conservative views were often close to radical socialists’ opinions when it came to description of ”pauperism” and consequences of liberal and capitalistic economic politics. The political conclusions they made out of it were, however, quite opposite from each other. Radical liberals who supported the Bill actually had little room to criticise it, since the conservatives used the same arguments as they would have used. Politisk Tidskrift tried to find a way out by using an ironic tone when the journal commented on the critique that the Clergy members of the Committee on the Constitution had directed against the Bill. It was strange, the journal argued, that the opponents of the proposal took it as “too little liberal”: Det är karakteristiskt för alla förslagets motsåndare, att de anse det för litet liberalt. […] Det är således hufvudsakligen ur rent folklig och demokratisk synpunkt, som de kritisera förslaget! (Politisk Tidskrift 4/1862 [1863], 198).

The periodical, as ”really liberal”, was a warm supporter of the Bill, although it distanced itself from the Bill by holding the opinion that it was not the best possible solution, but instead one of the best. There were two sides to which the argument was directed: ”ultra conservatives” and ”ultra radicals”. (ibid. 199-201). These “ultra radical” opinions were voiced, for example, in the newspaper Söndagsbladet, which was one of the few papers that supported “the worker’s” cause and opposed the Bill. De Geer’s proposal was criticised due to its “aristocratic” character. However, the target was not the Nobility, but, instead, “a plutocratic” and “bureaucratic” aristocracy (Söndagsbladet 14.5.1865). Moreover, it was argued that the new and too exclusive “national assembly” would be a stronger power than before, which made it, due to its exclusivity, even worse than the Estate-based representation (Söndagsbladet 21.5.1865). 17 Thus, the radical “left” was worried about the same consequences of the reform

17 ”[D]et hvilande förslaget icke är en bit bättre än den med skäl så öfverklagade ståndsrepresentationen, utan tvertom i så fall sämre att den, genom att till en s. k. nationalförsamling koncentrera denna aristokrati, ger den en helgd, en styrka och oantastlighet, som under nuvarande förhållanden aldrig kunnat komma den till del.” (Söndagsbladet 21.5.1865).

184 as the conservatives when they grounded their opposition in an expectation that the power of the legislative body would increase. “The principle of persons” could be attacked on the grounds that it was not completely applied. The supporters of the Bill were accused of inconsistency due to the exclusion of women and workers from the right to vote. It was asked, how one could appeal to the principle of the equality of individual citizens, and at the same time exclude most of the people from political rights (Södergren 1865a, 16-17). The point was not to argue for a universal suffrage, of course. On the contrary, the purpose was to show that the whole principle was false or at least unsuitable and dangerous. A task of “a patriot” was to wish every one the highest possible education and intellectual refining, not to include uncivilised people in political representation (ibid. 1819). A same kind of argument was held by Professor Ribbing who noted at the Clergy Estate that the mistake of the proposal was that it was based on two different principles, not on one. According to him, the proposal was not based on qualitative differences, but, instead, there was an intended difference between the characters of the two chambers. This difference, in turn, was based on ”a temporary” criterion. The problem was that while ”modern constitutions” were intended to be build on a wide democratic ground, they, by the same token, were equipped with ”guarantees” against this basic intention. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 161-163 [Ribbing]). The leading conservative politician, Henning Hamilton, pointed out the same inconsistency. To him, the application of ”the principle of persons” in the elections to the Second Chamber, if proved to be right, should be applied also to the elections to the First Chamber. It was not convincing, Hamilton argued, that De Geer did not dare to follow his principles but went only half-way. (Henning Hamilton 1865, 20). There were also less theoretical arguments in use. Doctor Lindgren, a Clergy representative, acknowledged that an equal right to participate in ”common affairs of the fatherland” would only be the right solution if all the people were equally qualified to watch over a common good. That was not the case, though. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 88). Another Clergy representative expressed a clear mistrust of human beings in general. An economic misfortune was nobody’s fault but one’s own. To blame the system of representation or God was not right: Det är så med menniskan, att, när hon icke får det så beqvämt hon önskar, vill hon ogerna medgifva felet ligga hos henne sjelf, utan söker orsaken utom sig. Så får Gud bära skulden för ett ekonomiskt obestånd, hvilket menniskan genom oförstånd, lättja och slöseri sjelf vållat. Så får ofta vårt representationssätt bära skulden för allt, som brister i den enskildes välbefinnande. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 163 [Janzon]).

There was much discussion of parliamentary government, parliamentarism, decreased power of the King, demolition of the balance of powers, and republican government in the debate. The opponents of the Bill argued that the reform would lead to the rule of parliament, and thus to unstable politics which

185 would follow “the opinion” and jeopardise the peaceful development of the country. A Parliamentary system would mean a ”search for popularity”, ”loss of independence of civil servants”, and ”listening to the changing tunes of a day” (Protokoll, Borgare-Ståndet 3 1862-1863, 642 [Henchen]). “The liberals”, in turn, were rather quiet on the issue of a parliamentary system. They were seemingly careful not to endanger the passing of the Bill. However, some political ideals were proclaimed. The English parliamentary system was described in a positive manner, though the aristocratic character of the House of Lords was usually criticised. The constitutions of Norway and Denmark were hailed as examples worth following. Other countries that were referred to were Belgium and Holland (e.g. Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 147 [Almqvist]). Those who were worried about consequences of the reform referred also to the experiences in Denmark. It was maintained that the power of the King had decreased after 1848 due to a strengthened parliament. For the conservatives, Denmark was clearly a negative example of the dangers of too great a change in political representation. It was also argued that Holland was not a relevant point of reference because of the country’s more developed industry and commerce, as well as its small area (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 152 [Anjou]). Norway was characterised as ”a democratic republic” by a former Under Secretary C. W. Ringborg. In Denmark, the King was pressurised by ”a democratic league”. Belgium, in turn, was divided into two parties. (Ringborg 1864, 16). Another characteristic of Norway’s political system was that the country was, due to its constitution, nothing but ”a slave to bureaucrats and incompetent, dummy peasant aristocrats” (Uggla 1865, 12). Moreover, the rule of Napoleon III was given as an example of bad consequences of a too generous right to vote (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 18621863, 154 [Anjou]). It was also maintained that, in England, the Parliament Act of 1832 was executed without disturbing the constitution and thus in accordance with the constitutional tradition, which would not be the case in Sweden if the Bill was accepted (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 349 [Söderberg]). It can be noted that whereas the conservatives used the Norwegian political system as an example of “a democratic republic” and “a peasant aristocracy”, the opponents of the Bill on the Left could use much of the same argument when they held that Norway was an example of “a bureaucratic peasant aristocracy” (Söndagsbladet 21.5.1865). However, the national liberals hailed the Norwegian example. Politisk Tidskrift stated provocatively that if it was revolutionary to level with Norway by abolishing the Estates, as some opponents of the Bill maintained, then it did not matter: Men hvilken sann och klok fosterlandsvän tror väl, att en revolution straxt skall stå för dörren i Sverige, derföre att det skaffar en mera förnuftsenlig och rättvis representation, än den närvarande? Anser man redan blott i fyrdelningens upphäfvande ligga en omstörtning och ett revolutionärt steg – så gerna för oss! (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1861, 38).

186 The demands for a Scandinavian union were linked with the demands for the reform. The rhetoric of Scandinavianism was directed especially to the King and his Court, for Scandinavian plans were eagerly supported and even produced by the King. However, there was also a more principled reason for the rhetoric which was based on European national radicalism. These two sides of national rhetoric were both in use in Politisk Tidskrift: Sverige måste först reformera sig sjelft och sina politiska institutioner, innan det kan tänka på någon möjlighet, att såsom medlem ingå i en skandinavisk union. Det må låta missljudande i våra öron, det må angripa vår stolthet såsom nation, men det kan icke hjelpas – sanningen framför allt! Vi stå i närvarandee ögonblick – dock mera i formellt, än i verkligt hänseende – för långt efter våra brödrafolk i politisk utveckling, för att vi rimligtvis skulle kunna begära, att de med oss skulle vilja ingå i ett närmare politisk fostbrödralag. (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1861, 54-55). [E]n nation, som ännu i flera fall står qvar vid sina medeltidsinstitutioner, har ståndsrepresentation, riddarhus, klassvälde, föga sjelfstyrelse, och nu förs en tillstymmelse till samvetsfrihet. (ibid. 55).

The latter quotation shows that there was a sharp tone in the rhetoric of Politisk Tidskrift. It may be surprising to find accusations of ”class power” and ”little of self-government” here, for it was precisely the egalitarian and self-governing political culture that was hailed. However, Politisk Tidskrift did not have to abandon its basic view on the egalitarian past. Actually, the political capacity of the Swedish people was a prerequisite for the ability to bring about the needed reform: Vi hafva ju alltid varit ett fritt, och äro sedan länge äfven ett konstitutionellt folk. Skulle då en förändrad nationalrepresentation hos oss vara ett arbete, så omöjligt och svårt att verkställa? (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1861, 56).

It should be noted that Politisk Tidskrift was not always a representative example of the political ideas of those who supported the Bill. Rather, it can offer a good picture of the ideas of radical national liberals. Their radicalism was connected to liberal Scandinavianism and European radical national movements, as well as to the ideas of 1848 in general. According to Politisk Tidskrift, every free country was based on a consent between the government and the people. Only if such a contract existed could the government be said to be constitutional (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 10). In Sweden, an increased power of aristocracy had destroyed the original coalition between the King and the people. In particular, the age of the Union of Kalmar was the target of criticism. The meetings of the Kingdom (riksmöten) had degenerated to the Herredagar. Engelbrekt and Gustaf Vasa were presented as the most important heroes who had saved the fatherland from the foreign and aristocratic rule. As usual, the Age of Liberty was considered in a pejorative manner. (ibid. 10-15). In the rhetoric of Politisk Tidskrift, ”false conservatism” was associated with the privileges of the Estates and classes. Such conservatism would lead to

187 disturbances and limitations of civic liberties, and finally to anarchy (ibid. 1920). The journal gave broad definitions on the concepts of democracy and republic in order not to exclude these, for radicals, positively evaluated concepts from a monarchy. ”Democracy” was defined as ”predominant power and influence of the true people, the mass of the nation” (ibid. 15). 18 The point here is that a democratic monarchy was defined as consisting of republican political institutions which included a constitution and a political representation. England was an example of a country in which there was a mixture of republican and monarchical political institutions. However, Politisk Tidskrift directed some critique towards the English system due to its aristocratic upper chamber of Parliament. (ibid. 15-16). As was often the case in nineteenth-century political thought, a direct democracy was considered unsuitable for the times. The representative system was the condition of a democratic society: Intet demokratisk samhälle är numera tänkbart utan representativa former och på rättsenlig väg tillkomna grundlagar. (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 18).

In the rhetoric of Politisk Tidskrift, the combination of republican political institutions and a monarchical head of the state was put forward to serve the demand for a pro-reform King. A monarch in a democratic society should ”listen to the signs of the times”, the argument went. The King should be a friend of ”the opinion of the people” and place himself on top of the movement that campaigned for the reform. The people could then, in turn, show moderation towards the King. (ibid. 21-23). Besides some efforts to put democratic and republican ideals in the framework of a monarchy, there were notions in which a democratic and republican tone was clearer. It was stated that ”the nature of the people’s power is that it takes up, more than any other way of governance, the virtues and merits of the citizens” (ibid. 19). 19 In addition, ”self-government” (sjelfstyrelse) and ”free state” (fristat) were expressed as political ideals. It should be noted that fristat can be taken as ”republic” in the Swedish language. It was argued that in republics the will of the people governs itself through laws. The self-government of the people begins from below and raises from there to all levels of the society. 20 It was also held that in a democratic society 18

”Med demokrati förstår man i allmänhet det egentliga folkets, massans af nationen, öfvervägande makt och inflytande i afseende på statens angelägenheter, oafsedt sjelfva styrelsens egenskap för öfrigt såsom monarkisk, aristokratisk eller republikanisk, d. v. s. representerad af ett enda öfverhufvud, eller delad mellan ett mindre eller större antal styresmän. Sålunda kan man äfven tala om en monarki med demokratiska eller republikaniska former och institutioner, och man menar dermed en sådan stat, der regentens makt är så inskränkt genom grundlagarne, att folket genom sina representanter kan utöfva ett kraftigt inflytande på statsärenderna.” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 15). 19 ”Det ligger i folkväldets beskaffenhet, att det i högre grad, än något annat styrelsesätt, tager medborgarenas dygder och förtjänster i anspråk.” (ibid. 19). 20 ”[A]tt folkets sjelfstyrelse börjar nedifrån och går uppåt genom alla samhällets gradationer. Vill man kalla detta ett politiskt ideal – välan!” (Politisk Tidskrift 1860/1, 24).

188 the extremes of the French Revolution would not be repeated because of the progress of ”general civilisation”. (ibid. 18-27). Nonetheless, the spirit of the political system was considered more important than its form. The examples of Belgium, Denmark, and Norway had shown that a constitutional monarchy was able to fulfil the expectations of “the freedom of the people” (folkfriheten) (ibid. 25). It was important that a selfgovernment must not turn to “anarchy” (sjelfsvåld). It was to be exercised in a peaceful and lawful manner. In order to achieve this, the main concerns were education and public spirit. According to Politisk Tidskrift, the most dangerous menace to the liberty of the people was bureaucracy, which was described as a centralising system in which a free citizen turned to ”a will-less machine” (ibid. 28-30). An atomistic, machine-like society was strictly rejected in the radical rhetoric, as it was also rejected in a conservative rhetoric which based on an organic idea of state and society. Actually, there were many who labelled their opponents as the protagonists of an atomistic society, and hardly any, if any at all, who would have agreed with such a label. Another political ideal, which was more obvious, yet less thoroughly articulated, in Politisk Tidskrift than the idea of republican self-government, was a liberal idea of parliamentary government. The idea was combined with the demand for the reform. An inspiring example was picked up from England where the ministers, as it was explained, were responsible to the people through the majority of Parliament (ibid. 26). 21 As mentioned earlier, the idea of parliamentary rule was not openly manifested in the pro-reform campaign, since it would have frightened uncertain supporters of the Bill. Politisk Tidskrift was not alone with its republican formulations. Fäderneslandet, the radical newspaper which had a critical attitude towards De Geer’s Bill before the nyliberals took over in 1863, openly defended republics against monarchies. Even “a red republicanism” was presented in a positive light in the paper (Fäderneslandet 24.10.1863). 22 However, republicanism was used as a positively evaluated label rather than in terms of clearly articulated political theories. In the rhetoric of the conservatives, a republican government was associated with ”the power of the people”. It was a political system that would lead either to a domestic despotic rule or to a foreign rule. A positively 21

”Det är det parlamentariska styrelsesättet, med sin ministeransvarighet å ena sidan, och den påtryckning å den andra, hvarmed folket genom representationen inverkar på styrelsen, dit nutidens liberala tendenser syfta. […] Den omätliga skilnaden mellan förhållandet här och i England är således den, att derstädes beror en ministers ställning hufvudsakligen af folkets, eller det i parlamentet rådande partiets förtroende, men hos oss af regentens personliga sympatier.” (Politisk Tidskrift 1860/1, 26). 22 ”Då monarkerna och deras anhängare börja frukta att makten skall glida ur deras händer och foken inse sin förmåga af sjelfstyrelse, framhålla de alltid den röda republiken såsom en skräckbild, för hvilken de veta att den stora massan af enfaldiga alltid ryggar tillbaka såsom hade den ett spökelse framför sig. Men betraktar man saken med fördomsfria ögon, så måste man medgifva att den röda republiken har vida mindre blod på sitt samvete än den röda monarkien har det, att frihet och civilisation hafva republiken att tacka för sin tillvaro, hvaremot den monarkiska principen alltid trädt hämmande i vägen för mensklighetens framåtskridande.” (Fäderneslandet 24.10.1863).

189 evaluated political system was ”a constitutional monarchy”, which was able to guarantee “a true freedom of the people”. In such system, the King had a right to decide, after having listened to the members of his Council, independently on issues which belonged to his domain. (Södergren 1865a, 51-52). There were two conceptions of ”democracy” in this sort of reasoning. On the one hand, there was ”the good democracy” which meant the law-abiding northern freedom, “the government for the people” instead of “the government of the people”. It was a traditional representative system in which the Estates had a central role. It meant the equality of all as long as it did not prevent differences which were necessary in a society. On the other hand, there was ”the bad democracy” which was associated with ”the sovereignty of the people”. Moreover, it was associated with “uneducated people”, ”proletarians”, and ”abstract theories”. (Södergren 1865a, 77-78). For the opponents of the Bill, maybe the most disturbing thing was the proposed introduction of annual sessions of the Riksdag. It was maintained that it would lead to a parliamentary rule and thus decreased power of the King (e.g. Nordström 1865, 89). Moreover, it was argued that annual sessions would lead to a continuous habit of ”reform the reforms” and also to ”a decreased interest in the public affairs” (Södergren 1865a, 43). ”A fresh political life” should not mean that the laws would be changed constantly (ibid. 44). A consequence would be that the power of the King would become a tool in the hands of a shifting majority of the Riksdag; that the ministers would govern the country in accordance with the majority in parliament, which was against the constitutional system of Sweden. Finally, it would mean that the daily press would decide upon the government. (ibid. 45). 23 In other words, it was thought that annual sessions of the Riksdag would bring about a pressure against the government, and thus against the King, to change the ministers of the Council if the Riksdag so demanded. This kind of pressure would be more difficult to create if there would be a longer period between the sessions of the parliament. (ibid. 49). In fact, there was a fear of political Spielraum in the reasoning: Skulle någon kunna föreställa sig, att – efter inträdandet af en ny, på samfälda val bygd representation, som på årliga riksdagar gåfve fritt spelrum för alla demokratiska idéers verksamhet för att komma i full tillämpning – man skulle se det republikanska elementet beskedligt lemnadt obegagnadt, medan man fortsätter det häftiga ifrandet för reformerande af hvad samhället eger i äldre institutioner? (Södergren 1865a, 62).

This was not what De Geer had in mind. In his justification of the Bill, he declared that the purpose of the reform was to create a representation which would “express the opinion of the majority of the politically thinking part of the nation” and, consequently, give an opportunity to have “a strong government”. In order to be able to govern “the opinion”, it had to be known: 23 ”[A]tt icke konungen, utan blott ministrarne skola föra landets regering, och att denna aldrig får föras i annan riktning, än att den, hvad de vigtigare grundsatserna, sjelfva styrelse-principerna angår, städse gillas af riksdagens pluralitet. Det är detta man betecknar med de bekanta orden ’minister-styrelse’ och ’parlamentariskt styrelsesätt’[.]” (Södergren 1865a, 45).

190 Det är af vigt, att representationen uttrycker det politiskt tänkande flertalets mening, icke blott för att förekomma, det inom den utestängda mängden ej må finnas nog intelligens och krafter för att öfverändkasta det bestående, utan äfven för möjligheten af en stark regering. För att styra i vår tid, måste man styra det allmänna tänkesättet, men att styra detta, måste man känna det. (De Geer 1865, 7-8).

Accordingly, the aim of the reform was not to bring about any sort of “politics of the day”. Rather, it was meant that the Spielraum would be as limited as possible. The annual sessions of the Riksdag were also viewed in this light by De Geer. He stated that if the Riksdag was allowed to meet annually, there would be less tensions against the government (ibid. 21). 24 He tried to persuade the opponents of the Bill to believe, as he himself certainly did, that the government would have the major political power in the future, as well.


“Vi hysa den öfvertygelse, att om icke förhållandet emellan statsmakterna redan i sjelfva sin grund bär i sig fröet till upplösning, så kunna årliga riksdagar icke leda till annat ömsesidigt vinst, och långt snarare dertill, att en god Regering leder Representationen, än att denna styr Regeringen. Erfarenheten visar, att ju längre en maktegande varit hidrad i utöfningen af sin makt, desto hetsigare börjar han detta utöfvande. […] Missförsåndent skulle aldrig kunna rotfästa sig så djupt under årliga riksdagar[.]” (ibid. 21).



9.1 Identification with ”the nation” and ”the fatherland” The principle that it should be individual persons instead of the Estates or classes who represent the people touched closely upon the question how “the nation” should be understood. Also, the discussion on the right way to collect the representatives led to the questions of who should be included in “the political nation” and who were regarded as “patriotic citizens”. In the debates on the Bill, it was of utmost importance to be able to use the concepts of “nation” and “patriotism” convincingly. Thus, there were lots of the rhetoric of “the nation” and “the fatherland” in the political language of the 1860s in Sweden. A new formation of the political representation is ”the greatest life-anddeath question of the nation” (denna nationens stora – och största – lifsfråga), the Peasant Estate stated in its petition to the government in 1860. ”The great majority of the nation” (nationens stora flertal) demanded a change of political representation so that it would be ”in accordance with the times” (tidsenlig representationsförändring). (Bonde-Ståndets Protokoller 8 1859-60, 523-526). The reason for the lack of tidsenlig representation was the inability of the Riksdag to reform itself, due to its division into the Estates which watched over their own particular interests, and not the interests of the nation: [F]rågans slutliga afgörande hvilat hos en Riksförsamling, hvars fyra Stånd mera varit de enskilda intressenas, än nationens målsmän. (Bonde-Ståndets Protokoller 8, 1859-1860, 524).

192 The Peasants took the liberty of speaking in the name of ”the nation”. They also appealed to the “patriotism” of the Nobility and the Clergy, so that these two highest Estates would put the well-being of the whole above their particular advantages (ibid.). Consequently, their own patriotic position within ”the nation” and ”the whole” was rhetorically established. To use Kenneth Burke’s terminology, the Peasants identified themselves with ”the nation”, ”the whole”, ”patriotism”, and ”time”. As mentioned in the Fourth Chapter, ”identification” and its counterpart, ”division”, are elementary to ideas of rhetoric, which means that these categories deal with conflicting situations and uses of language in a partisan way (Burke 1950, 22-23). The Burghers gave their petition to the government the same day as the Peasants, which indicates that the taking up of the issue of reforming political representation was planned and prepared in advance. Despite some substantial differences between the petitions, a common front for the reform was created. 1 The Burghers wanted to ”express the wish of the nation” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 61). Moreover, the reform was ”longed for the nation” (ibid. 64). Here, ”the nation” was the subject which acted; it spoke with and about ”the fatherland” (fosterlandets offentliga angelägenheter) (ibid.). The same was clearly shown in Politisk Tidskrift which presented ”the nation” as an acting subject which spoke to ”a patriot” who was a member of the very same nation (Politisk Tidskrift 6/1861, 63). 2 Actually, ”the nation” and ”patriot” could be interchanged, which means that there was a sort of change of places of the rhetor in the pro-reform rhetoric, which is a common feature in the rhetoric of national anthems. The figure of community that is created this way is very wide yet exclusive in character, for it creates with its circular logic a sense of ’higher’ authority of the rhetor. (see Sondermann 1995, 85-108). The initiatives for the reform were supported by the liberal press. Together with ”the nation”, Aftonbladet spoke with ”the great majority of the people” (Aftonbladet 2.11.1860). Moreover, there were expressions like: ”from the side of the nation” (från nationens sida), ”expression of national will” (yttring af nationalviljan), ”national matter” (nationalangelägenhet) (Aftonbladet 6.11.1860). “The national” issue was also ”liberal”, for the paper appealed to ”our liberals in the country side”. In addition, the government was regarded as characteristically aristocratic and bound to the throne. (Aftonbladet 2.11.1860). Consequently, the papers pressed the government to take the side for a total reform (Aftonbladet 6.11.1860). The Estates were presented as opposition to ”the nation” in the pro-reform campaign (e.g. Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 60). A conflictual ”identification” implied the ”division” in which the Estates were presented as a counterpart to 1

According to Politisk Tidskrift, the differences between the initiatives were of minor importance (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 4; Politisk Tidskrift 2/1861, 40). The journal did not want to emphasise the Norwegian pattern of unicameral system, which was presented in the petition of the Peasants. 2 ”Den stora frågans framgång beror nu hufvudsakligast på nationen sjelf, och hvilken fosterlandsvän skulle väl nu af indolens och likgiltighet vägra att densamma understödja?” (Politisk Tidskrift 6/1861, 63).

193 the nation. To use Koselleck’s terms, ”the Estate” was ”an asymmetric counter concept” to ”the nation” (Koselleck 1985, 163). Politisk Tidskrift identified itself with ”the core of the nation” (kärnan af nationen). The journal had an antagonistic view of the small but powerful privileged elite which defended its position so carefully. The rigid description of antagonism was a rhetorical strategy, the aim of which was to warn those who had not yet decided upon their stand about the dangers of passivity. Persuasion was thus directed towards potential supporters of the reform rather than towards the elite that the text described. Consequently, ”the greys” who had not chosen their position were strictly condemned: ”The one who is not with us, is against us” (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1861, 36). 3 It was implicitly maintained that there were different parts within the nation: ”the other part of the nation, in itself the core of it, which produces and works” (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 297). This was in line with a common view on ”two nations”, according to which one part of the nation works, whereas another part lives off the first part’s labour. It can be noted that the figure of ”two nations” was shared with radicals and some conservatives who argued against the moneyed criterion of census. For example, C. G. Uggla, who was a Noble member of the Committee on the Constitution of 1863 and a participant of the conservative campaign, maintained that the bicameral system with the census would divide the nation into two parts: into the rich and the poor, i.e. to those who had rights and those who did not, to citizens (statsmedborgare) and non-citizens (icke statsmedborgare) (Uggla 1865, 4). According to him, it should have been openly declared that the Bill dealt with ”a part of the Swedish people” instead of ”the Swedish people” (ibid. 16). As we have seen, ”the nation” was described as ”the great majority of the people”. ”The people” was as well associated with ”the great majority of the nation” in Politisk Tidskrift (e.g. Politisk Tidskrift 3/1862 [1863], 152). Thus, ”the nation” and ”the people” were interchangeable expressions in this sort of rhetoric. ”The people” was also defined as ”the great majority of the inhabitants who were independent from privileges and corporate interests, who set the whole before the parts, and who believed that particular benefits should give way to the common best” (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1862, 127). 4 Thus, ”the people” was not synonymous with all the inhabitants of the country, but instead it was taken into the same rhetorical position as other concepts, like ”the nation” and ”the fatherland”, which were used in order to manifest the 3

”Fienderna till samfälda val och en tidsenligare representation utgöra väl ett ringa fåtal i jemförelse med sjelfva kärnan af nationen; men detta fåtal – må man icke förglömma det – är inflytelserik genom sin ställning i samhället, och bildar der en strängt sluten falang, som eger både vana och begär att herrska, samt är noga på sin vakt, då det gäller att försvara förvärfvade eller inbillade företrädesrättigheter. Såsom frågans största och farligaste fiender räkna vi dock likgiltigheten, sömnaktigheten och dolskheten.” (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1861, 36). 4 ”[H]vad menar vi med svenska folket? Så svara vi, att vi dermed mena och icke kunna mena något annat, än det stora flertalet af Sveriges innebyggare, som oberoende af privilegii- och korporations-intressen sätter det hela framför delarne och tror, att enskilda fördelar böra vika för det allmänna bästa.” (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1862, 127).

194 opposition to the political privileges and in order to bring about the reform of political representation. The exclusive aspect of this sort of rhetoric was not emphasised in detail. Rather, it was given as self-evident. It was clear that the privileged were left out, but it was often kept unclear how the demarcation was made against the masses. ”The nation”, ”the fatherland” and ”the people” were used as inclusive concepts which represented the voices of those who actually did not have any voice in political matters. However, there were radicals who opposed the Bill. The newspaper Söndagsbladet clearly avoided the positively evaluated rhetoric of “the nation” and made a clear distinction between “the nation” and “the people”. The concept of “national representation” was contrasted to the concept of “representation of the people” (folkrepresentation). The former was exclusive and based on privileges. It was bureaucratic and plutocratic. The latter was the system of representation in which the people at large were included. (Södagsbladet 14.5.1865.). It should be noted that this kind of critique against the Bill played a minor role in the debate in general. Although the critique of plutocratic characters of the Bill was shared between the radicals, who associated themselves with “the labourers”, and the conservatives, there was no room for real co-operation between the far sides of the political field. The supporters of the Bill, in turn, were concerned with the conservative opponents. Söndagsbladet and its readers, for example, did not have any say whether the Bill was passed, anyway. The rhetoric of ”the nation” was combined with the rhetoric of ”the fatherland” in the supporters' argument for the Bill. “The patriotic” reform was demanded in the name of ”the majority of the nation” (Politisk Tidskrift 7/1862 [1863], 37). 5 The rhetoric of ”the fatherland” was an effective way – one of the best ways – to create a positively evaluated identification and to persuade the audience to the side of the speaker. Actually, ”fatherland” and ”patriotism” have often been used as commonly accepted rhetorical agreements in political discourse (Summa 1996, 70; Johannesson 1980, 171). It was argued in the introduction of Politisk Tidskrift that the purpose was not to support any dissolution of revolutionary opinions, but, instead, to educate the common people, ”the core of the people” (kärnan af folket), and to create a public spirit among it in order to direct society in ”true liberal and patriotic direction” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 5). 6 The journal argued that without ”the spirit of citizenship” (medborgerliga anda) a state was nothing but a lifeless machine without any content, and the civic freedom nothing but a dead fœtus (foster). What most forcefully enlivened this spirit was the feeling for, and the 5 ”Med de patriotiska tänkesätt red. [Samuel Ödmann] i själ och hjerta hyser, kan red. omöjligt länge förblifva fremmande eller likgiltig för det lösningssätt af representationsfrågan, som omfattas af nationens majoritet, och som, efter femtio års strider, ändtligen tyckes innebära förhoppning om ett lyckligt slut.” (Politisk Tidskrift 7/1862 [1863], 37). 6 ”Och då det ingalunda är hans afsigt, att framlägga några samhällsupplösande läror, utan tvärtom, genom att hos sjelfva kärnan af folket upplifva hågen för allmän politisk upplysning, bidraga till väckandet af en medborgerlig anda och samhällets konserverande i en sannt liberal och fosterländskt riktning.” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 5).

195 consciousness of, the fatherland. (ibid. 7-8). This patriotic feeling, in turn, was defined as a consciousness of the soil of the honoured fathers; of belonging to a common tribe, and of the interests and wants shared with thousands of the same family (ibid. 8). 7 Yet, it also meant ”the common fight and work for the common good” (ibid.). This kind of patriotic feeling was ”the mother of all virtues” without which there was no citizenship, thus no freedom, and thus no fatherland (ibid.). 8 In other words, it was argued that the sense of the soil of the fatherland created the love of freedom which, in turn, was the condition of having the fatherland. This is an example of a circular reasoning which links the organic view of “fatherland” with the concept of “freedom”, and with the political concept of fatherland. As a consequence it also brings together three tenses of patriotic rhetoric: the past, the present, and the future, for ”every citizen should know her fatherland, its fates in the past, its hopes in the present, and its prospects in the future (ibid.). It was important to get to know its political institutions and political system, and to participate in the struggle for its development and existence (ibid. 9). In accordance with the common understanding, the counter concept of ”patriotism” was ”egoism” (egennyttan) (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1862 [1863], 143). Accordingly, the patriotic rhetoric of Politisk Tidskrift had two sides. On the one hand, it was based on natural togetherness in the common past. On the other hand, it was linked with political institutions, laws, civic freedom, and political citizenship following the pattern of the republican history of ”patriotism”. The identification with ”patriotism” can be divided roughly into two categories. Firstly, there was a patriotic support to the reform. In addition to national liberals like Samuel Ödmann and his Politisk Tidskrift, there were moderate supporters of the Bill who combined the patriotic rhetoric with the reform. The most important person in this respect was, of course, De Geer himself, who in the minutes of the Council of the State maintained that the reform dealt with ”the furthering of the best of the fatherland” (befrämjande af fäderneslandets bästa) (quoted in Central-Komité 1864, 26). The Peasants, in turn, combined ”the warm love for the soil of the fatherland” with the rhetoric of civic mindedness in their thanks-giving address to the King on January 22, 1863. According to the Peasant Estate, the representatives of the future Riksdag would have “a civic mind” (medborgerliga sinne) which would be concerned with the well-being of the whole. In addition, the proposal was praised as a possibility to create closer connections with other Scandinavian peoples because, for the first time, the Swedish people was able to ”feel itself as a unitary whole” (känna sig såsom en enhet). (Bonde-Ståndets Protokoll 2 1862-63, 382-383). A member of the Clergy Estate, Doctor Almqvist, was one of those 7

”Medvetandet att trampa vördade fäders uråldriga jord, att tillhöra en gemensam folkstam, att ega önskningar, intressen och behof lika med tusenden af samma familj[.]” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 8). 8 ”Utan kärlek till fäderneslandet finnes ingen sann och upphöjd medborgerlighet; det är denna kärlek till fosterjorden, som alstrar kärleken till friheten, och utan friheten eger fäderneslandet intet värde, finnes icke något fädernesland!” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 8).

196 who, with great self-confidence, spoke in the name of ”the politically thinking part of the nation”, which was defined as ”the politically educated nation”, about ”the patriotic proposal”. He also accused the opponents of the Bill of being ”more royalist than the King himself” due to their opposition to the Bill that was given by the King and his Council. It was not, as he advised, wise to be against both the King and the people. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 337-339 [Almqvist]). We can note that the position of the opponents of the Bill was described as a very exclusive and narrow one. The opponents of the Bill were left alone outside the people and without the King. As mentioned earlier, one of the arguments against the Bill was that it would bring about a dominance of the peasants in the Riksdag. However, it was also possible to try to respond to this argument without actually denying such a possibility, by referring to the historical role of the Peasants and thus to their patriotism. A Noble member, Fredrik Cederschjöld, argued that “Swedish common people” (Svenska allmogen) had several times defended the ancient freedom of Sweden both against external and internal oppression. The Peasants had, together with the Nobility, participated in the affairs of the fatherland with great patriotism. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 192 [Cederschjöld]). Consequently, there was no risk even if the peasants held a stronger position in the future. The fact that landed property was one of the criteria of the suffrage meant that the patriotic position of the peasants was in general acknowledged, and hard to deny. As noted in the previous chapter, De Geer had a strategy in which he, on the one hand, emphasised the respectability of the peasants and on the other favoured the towns and cities at the cost of the rural areas in his Bill. The opponents of the Bill had a concept of ”patriotism” which referred first of all to the loyalty towards the King and the Council. It was often connected to the glorious self-image and honour of the Nobility. C. Leijonhufvud, a Noble representative of the Committee on the Constitution of 1863, associated his own position with ”the King”, ”the Government”, and ”the whole nation” (KU 7 1863, 20; see also Palmstierna 1865, 5). 9 The purpose of this sort of associative rhetoric was to bring together issues which did not necessarily belong together (Perelman 1996, 57-74, 93-119; Summa 1996, 71) The Nobility was identified with ”the fatherland”. The testimony of History showed, according to Leijonhufvud, that the Nobility had influenced the affairs of the fatherland more strongly than other Estates, and at times decisively. Therefore, it was their duty to precede other citizens in the thoroughness and impartiality in their examination of the Bill. (KU 7 1863, 20-21). Against this kind of reasoning, it can be understood that ”the love for fatherland” and ”true patriotism” were, for example, Henning Hamilton’s reasons for expressing his opposition to the Bill (Henning Hamilton 1865, 3, 7). Doctor Runsten, one of the toughest opponents of the Bill, stated that patriotic and national economic interests were adequately represented by the Estates, whereas the proposed 9

”[…] att man gör både Konungen, Regeringen och hela nationen bättre tjenst med att öppet uttala hvad man derom tänker[.]” (KU 7 1863, 20).

197 representation would represent “a cosmopolitan” interest. It would danger the independence of the Kingdom as well as the freedom of the people. (PresteStåndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 386 [Runsten]). 10 He referred to “interests” in the plural which would indicate that he did not hold with the idea of one and unitary common interest, which was the main figure of patriotic rhetoric in the reform debate. “A representative”, i.e. the member of the Riksdag, was not to be counted on, for he would only represent his own egoistic interests. ”Egoism” has commonly been considered the most obvious counter concept to ”patriotism”. Those who were in favour of the Bill argued that the Estates, or some classes, would put their privileged egoistic interests above the patriotic interest of the whole. The opponents of the Bill, in turn, painted a picture of a plutocratic and individualistic egoism. It was argued that an individual vote would bring about an atomistic society and a political system in which the well-being of an organic whole would be endangered. If the true patriotic spirit prevailed, then the common interest was best safeguarded by the Estates, which watched over the common good instead of the interests of the Estates:Vore alla, hvad de föregifva, sanna patrioter, som såge mera på det gemensamma fosterlandets bästa än på egna fördelar, stånds- eller local intressen, så skulle aldrig någon split mellan de respective Stånden ega rum eller ens kunna uppstå. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 76-77 [Ternström]).

Thus, the supporters of the Estate or class representation viewed the system which was based on an individual vote as egoistic. It was questioned whether joint elections would mean a greater guarantee against egoism than the system of Estates (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 163 [Janzon]). It is important to note that ”patriotism” was always linked with the idea of common interests and against particular egoistic interests. In this sense the meaning of the concept was pretty much the same regardless its application to different political purposes. However, there is a potential to a conceptual change when the application of the concept changes (Skinner 1988e, 121-122). Thus, it is possible to view two different interpretations on “patriotism” here. Despite the patriotic rhetoric, the idea that there were particular interests which needed to be represented was not totally rejected, as discussed in the previous chapter. It was argued by Bishop Annerstedt, for instance, that the Estates actually represented particular and opposing interests. His point was to argue that these interests were most suitably and peacefully directed to a common one by the Estates. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 341-342 [Annerstedt]). Another speaker at the Clergy Estate, Doctor Söderberg, stated that all talk about ”the great common interest of the fatherland” was an utopian phrase. Instead, there were particular ”state interests”, such as those of religion, morality, science, art, commerce, industry, and agriculture. (Preste10

“Genom Ståndförfattningens upphäfvande skola nemligen de stora, både nationaleconomiska och politiska, både religiösa och rent fosterländska samhällsintressen, som af Rikets nuvarande Ständer temmeligen fullständigt representeras, blifva förbisedda, undanskutna och tillspillogifna, samt i stället utbytta emot ett enda sådant representantintresse, som, hufvudsakligen pecuniärt, blifver icke ett nationaleconomiskt, men tvärtom ett blott pecuniär-cosmopolitiskt, till förfång och framtida undergång såväl för Rikets sjelfständighet som för den sanna folkfriheten.” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 386 [Runsten]).

198 Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 351 [Söderberg]; see also Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 356 [Björkman]). 11 It seems that, during the last days of the struggle, some were willing to deny the idea of a patriotic interest of the whole, as it was too strongly connected to the Bill. There was a lot of patriotic rhetoric in the air during the last days before the final voting in December 1865. During the campaigns for and against the Bill, it had been repeatedly claimed that the Nobles and the Clergy should offer themselves to ”the altar of the fatherland”. This altar was the Riksdag when it would decide over the Bill, as Lars Hierta, put it (see Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 158 [Hierta]). The Riksdag was considered an agora in which the affairs of the fatherland were discussed on and decided upon. Even the opponents of the Bill were forced to refer to the figure of ”the altar of the fatherland”. Actually, they also wanted to use the figure when they saw that it was wiser to give way than to keep on struggling against the coalition that was behind the Bill. The opponents of the Bill were, consequently, in a weak position in their ability to speak convincingly in the name of “the fatherland” and with ”patriotism”. An example of this was given when Professor Lindgren, who was one of the members of the Committee on the Constitution, complained about ”current uses of language” in his speech at the Clergy Estate at the beginning of the final voting. He admitted that ”a yes” would be associated with ”patriotism” throughout the country ”from Haparanda to Ystad”. ”A no” would be linked with ”interests of the Estates”: Jag vet mera än väl, att jag här med ett jakande votum kunde eröfra popularitet och högljudda loford från Haparanda till Ystad för fosterländska, högsinnade tänkesätt, äfvensom att ett ’Nej’ drager öfver sin man, om ej ovilja och hat, åtminstone misstankar för låga afsigter. […] [M]en den blifver allt utom aktningsvärd, om den uppträder med terroristiska anspråk på absolut ofelbarhet, förklarande sig som den enda förnuftigt berättingade meningen, och såsom den enda som skulle kunna stå tillsammans med fullt patriotiska tänkesätt, och stämplande sin motsats såsom motiverad af lumpa ståndsintressen, eller af ett envist begär att motsätta sig hvarje förändring af vår nuvarande Representativa författning. Sådant är dock det språk, som nu en lång tid förts icke blott af de flesta bland landets tidningar, utan äfven af flertalet af Förslagets anhängare. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 150-151 [Lindgren]).

This wrong ”patriotic” opinion for the reform was as good as ”agitation” and ”corruption” (ibid. 151-152). 12 Indeed, ”corruption” has been understood, together with ”egoism”, as a counter concept of ”patriotism”. In the political


”Der blir det fråga om Fäderneslandets stora gemensamma intresse i hvilka alla andra partiela intressen uppgå och försvinna. Jag påstår att hvarje tal om detta stora allmänna intresse som skulle sväfva högt öfver de namnda särskilda statsintressena är en utopisk fras utan innehåll och fotfäste i verkligheten.” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 18651866, 351 [Söderberg]). 12 ”[H]vad annat än corruption är det som under den sednaste tiden, ja ända till denna dag, bedrivits till förmån för det hvilande Förslaget?” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 18651866, 152 [Lindgren]).

199 cultures of the Renaissance republics, the love of patria was considered a defence against “corruption” (see Viroli 1995, 24-39; Skinner 1984, 205-207). Thus, the rhetorical character of the situation was not left unnoticed by the participants of the debate. Dean Westin, a Clergy member, complained about the wrong use of the epithet ”the politically thinking part of the nation” in the campaign for the Bill (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 235 [Westin]). The campaign itself was often accused of being pure ”agitation”. However, ”the majority of the politically thinking part of the nation” was so effective as a rhetorical image that the opponents of the Bill had to use it, as well. For example, J. A. Södergren had difficulties with it when he tried to argue that addresses which were subscribed, as he admitted, by about 50 000 persons, did not express the voice of the majority of the politically thinking part of the nation, because the level of knowledge of the subscribers could not be examined. What he did, instead, was that he referred to ”general interests of the society” when he tried to give a meaning to the image. (Södergren 1865a, 2, 20). It was difficult, if not impossible, for him to speak about ”the majority” in a positive meaning without defining ”the politically thinking” exclusively. To him, the question was about ”the politically thinking part of the nation in a true meaning” (ibid. 28). Consequently, the uneducated masses would not represent the ”opinion of the majority of the politically thinking part of the nation” (Södergren 1865b, 9). 13 The problem, according to Södergren, was that ”the common way of thinking” (det allmänna tänkesättet) would decide upon ”the civic trust” (det medborgerliga förtroendet) (ibid. 10). Nevertheless, the concept/image of ”the politically thinking part of the nation” was quite suitable for both sides of the struggle, for it did not question the exclusion of those who were not ”politically thinking”. Despite the difficulties with ”the current uses of language”, as Professor Lindgren put it, Södergren appealed to ”patriotism” when he argued against the Bill. Every ”friend of the fatherland must protest against such lightheartedness”, for the reform would undermine the monarchy and prepare ”a republican confusion” (republikansk villervalla) (ibid. 4-5). He noticed, of course, the contestedness of ”patriotism” and the rhetoric of self-sacrificing to ”the fatherland”. Consequently, he complained about ”well-sounding liberal patriotic phrases” (ibid. 11). However, he also tried to appeal to ”the true patriotism” which was based on a careful examination of the issue and on conscience. As always in the rhetoric of ”patriotism”, the future of the fatherland was to be saved (Södergren 1865a, 110-112). 14 13

”En af de vigtigaste punkter i tvisten om de samfälda valens lämplighet är frågan om möjligheten och sannoligheten deraf, att den stora massan politiskt okunnige, som, genom sin ofantliga öfvervigt i personantal, kan, under lika rösträtt, alldeles öfverväldiga de politiskt bildades antal, skall genom demagogisk agitation förledas till sådana val, genom hvilka representationen blefve uttryck af något helt annat, än hvad den nödvändigt bör uttrycka: ’tänkesättet hos majoriteten af den politiskt tänkande delen af nationen.’” (Södergren 1865b, 9). 14 ”[S]å att icke det nya får leda till uppenbar fara för fäderneslandets framtida välgång. Sådan vore den sanna yttringen af den patriotism, hvartill man i närvarande fråga ofta höres vädja. Ett högre, ett ädlare och värdigare offer kan icke erbjudas åt fäderneslandet, än

200 One of the most fervent opponents of the Bill, a former Under Secretary Carl Ringborg, accused the reform campaign of being ”a mocking and sullying” of ”the honour and patriotism” as well as ”the religion and the faith in monarchy” (Ringborg 1865, 6). To him, democracy meant despotism, and the situation in Sweden was compared and paralleled with revolutionary France: Guillotinen är i full gång. Icke den som skiljer hufvudet från kroppen, utan den som dödar det dyrbaraste hufvudet eger – tankarne. (ibid.).

According to Ringbom, there were ”revolutionary activities” going on in the name of ”patriotism”. It was not acceptable, as Aftonbladet did, to equate ”nation” with ”the power of the people”. The Bill was ”revolutionary” and ”republican” rather than ”national”, since it was totally ”strange to the historical national development” of the country. (ibid. 10). In addition, the claim that the representative assembly should be appointed out of ”the nation in its entirety” was totally wrong, for such a principle was not applied in any monarchical state which had representative constitutions (ibid. 16). Accordingly, ”the history of the Swedish people” had been “the history of its Kings”, as Geijer had put it, and so it should be in the future, as well (ibid. 29).

9.2 Ethos of togetherness and pathos of obligation There is a strong tendency to refer to a general interest and to the interest of the whole in the rhetoric of “patriotism”. This sort of rhetoric is often based on the idea of natural togetherness in the sense of common and shared origin and past. However, a patriotic general interest can also be based on a more or less explicit and articulated political commitment to the well-being of the political community. In such a case, there is more or less the question of the republican concept of “patriotism”. These two variants of “patriotism” cannot be clearly separated in political rhetoric, though. In practical political life, an opportunistic and eclectic rhetoric is a part of even a principled political discourse. Accordingly, the rhetoric of natural togetherness is a general aspect of the rhetoric of “patriotism”. As mentioned earlier, the rhetoric of “patriotism” often functions as a means to create a commonly accepted rhetorical agreement in political discourse. Patriotic rhetoric is effective in its capacity to bring about a positively evaluated position to a political actor. It is not common that someone den trognaste, mest samvetsgranna vård om dess välfärd, icke blott yttre faror, utan ock under de inre stormar, som uppröra och söndra medborgarnes sinnen. […] Omdömet derom är hvars och ens ensak; han skall pröfva efter sitt bästa förstånd; men just denna pröfning, icke någon annan bevekelsegrund, skall bestämma hans handlingssätt i den afgörande stunden. Sådant är, i förevarande, för fäderneslandets framtid omätligt vigtiga angelägenhet, patriotismens stränga kraf.” (Södergren 1865a, 110-112).

201 wants to be identified as unpatriotic. Indeed, there is ”cosmopolitism” which often has been presented as a counter concept to ”patriotism”. However, in the republican tradition of ”patriotism”, there has not been any antagonistic distinction between ”patriotism” and ”cosmopolitism”. For example, in the eighteenth century, enlightened philosophers often considered ”cosmopolitism” equivalent to a progressive policy and not necessarily something which was directed against a state. Despite Rousseau’s rigid distinction between ”cosmopolitism” and ”patriotism”, in late eighteenthcentury political thought, ”patriotism” and ”universalism” were not mutually exclusive, nor were ”patriotism” and cosmopolitism”. (Frijhoff 1998, 110-112). Against this background, it is understandable that Politisk Tidskrift maintained that ”the enlightenment” had been ”cosmopolitan” and ”universal” in character and, as a consequence, the nineteenth century was the century of ”nationalities” and ”human brotherhood” (Politisk Tidskrift 6/1862 [1863], 350). Thus, patriotic rhetoric often gives an impression of a common agreement and consensual commitment to the political community. However, it has already been noted that ”identification” bears within itself its counterpart which is ”division” (Burke 1950, 23). ”Patriotism” has often been used in a manner that those who were not included in the patriotic position were tacitly excluded (cf. Gerhard & Link 1991, 32; Sternberger 1967, 30). The ”asymmetric counter concept” (Koselleck 1985, 163) of ”patriotism” is then something of non-character, i.e. something not wanted, ”unpatriotic” and ”egoistic”. As in the rhetoric of ”we” in general, there is always ”others” to be considered, even if the ”we” is not clearly and explicit articulated. Actually, such lack of clarity makes this kind of rhetoric politically very persuasive (Hyvärinen 1994, 71-73). It should also be noted that simple repetitions of, for example, ”our fatherland” and ”God save the King” are not necessarily rhetorically ineffective but, rather, useful and politically often very effective means of creating identifications (Burke 1950, 26; Kanerva 1995, 89). As Burke has noted: In accordance with the rhetorical principle of identification, whenever you find a doctrine of ’nonpolitical’ aesthetics affirmed with fervor, look for its politics. (Burke 1950, 28).

The rhetoric of ”the fatherland” and ”the nation” used in the debate was to a great extent ritualistic in this sense. The expression of ”the altar of the fatherland” is the best example of such kind of rhetoric. It was understood in a light of the honour of the Nobility as the strongest force in defence of the King and the Kingdom. Moreover, it was based on an understanding of the common origin, the past, and the fate of ”the fatherland”. However, the latter understanding of ”patriotism” was not necessarily attached merely to the noblemen. Simply, it was commonly shared. An example of the understanding of ”the fatherland” can be picked up from the dictionary Dictionary of the Swedish Language (Ordbok öfver svenska språket), published in 1871. The entry “fatherland” (fosterland) was defined as “the land in which one was born and brought up, and which had been the

202 home of the fathers for ages” (Kindblad 1871, 62). 15 The entry “patriotic” (fosterländsk) explained that one had to be faithful and devoted to the land where one had been raised and brought up (ibid.). Moreover, another entry for “fatherland”, (fädernesland), had as an explanation that “it was the duty of every citizen to defend the fatherland” (ibid.). Thus, the lexical concept of “patriotism” was linked with the idea of a useful and diligent member of the society. The same can also be interpreted from the titles of the publications of the Patriotic Society (Patriotiska sällskapet) between 1850 and 1870. The aim of the articles was to give information and education on practical skills in an agricultural daily life. 16 “A patriot” was a useful member of society who was “rooted” in the fatherland. The natural togetherness was emphasised, for example, with epithets ”soil of the fatherland” and ”the same big family” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 8-9). Moreover, ”Swedish sons” were put in the middle of the Nordic nature, i.e. in the middle of ”our mountains” and ”our valleys”, as the geography was mystified as a part of the history and the present (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1862, 104). A statute concerning the school education had stated in 1807 that teaching should “wake and maintain the love of the fatherland and its successful constitution” (quoted in Tingsten 1969, 121). In 1868, a memorandum on elementary education stated that the purpose of History teaching was to wake a student’s ”nationally political consciousness”. Accordingly, the teaching was to be ”patriotic and national” yet without any religious or political goals. It was not to be moralistic or directed against other peoples, either. (Tingsten 1969, 121-122; see also Montan 1869, 101). It was commonly maintained that the Swedish people were under the of God (Petterson 1992, 155). Indeed, the combination of God and the fatherland was the picture of the Swedish history presented in school-books in the 1860s. The Lutheran faith, ”the ancient Swedish freedom”, and the loyalty towards the King and the state were attributes of “a patriot citizen” who was pictured as a useful member of the society. “The freedom” was described as a co-operation between the King and the Estates. Political freedom meant the separation of powers, which was understood in terms of constitutionalism. The Age of Liberty was presented in a negative light, and Engelbregt was a great hero. (see Tingsten 1969, 141-143, 160-181). As discussed in chapter Seven, both ”fatherland” and ”nation” gained radical interpretations which were directed against the established political power during the late eighteenth century. The history of “the fatherland” also contained critical and explicit political meanings which cannot be reduced to the natural togetherness. For example, the eighteenth-century radical Thomas


”Det land, der man blifvit född och uppfostrad, som af ålder varit fäderns hembygd.” (Kindblad 1871, 62). 16 I have found following titles in the library catalogue: Smärre samlade skrifter i Landthushållningen utgifna af J. Arrhenius. 1. Om egofriden. Upsala 1858; Landtbrukspraktika af J. Arrhenius och G. A. Lindqvist. Första delen: Jordbrukslärans huvudgrunder. Stockholm 1866; Om Stallgödseln fråga. Våra bästa Mat-svampar, Stoclholm 1867.

203 Thorild 17 stated that ”the fatherland” was not the ”cold soil we tramp” but it was all that was considered good and great. In particular, it was ”the laws we have common” (quoted in Linnell & Löfgren 1995, 15). It has been noted that his ”constitutional and civic” view differed from the view of the old patriotic obedience in which ”the fatherland” was linked with the authorities. It also differed from the later romantic view of the mystic folk and soil, which came to be articulated in terms of ”nationalism”. (ibid. 15). As also mentioned earlier, there was a national current which was directed against the estate-state and which in some respect was raised from below. The patriotic rhetoric of Politisk Tidskrift clearly shows that there were contradictory uses of ”patriotism”. The concept was sometimes articulated more or less in a republican manner when fair laws and political rights and freedoms of the polity were taken as conditions of one’s having the fatherland. However, the political demands and goals that were presented were legitimised and put forward by referring to an organic togetherness. This ethos of togetherness was combined with the pathos of obligation, for it was everybody’s duty to take part in the political struggle in favour of the reform of the political representation. It meant ”the common fight and work for the common good” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 8). Moreover, it was stated that ”the success of the great question depends mainly on the nation self” (Politisk Tidskrift 6/1861, 63). Consequently, the togetherness that was constructed with the patriotic and national rhetoric was the reason for the demands that were put forward. Thus, these demands – the pathos of obligation – reveal the other side of the ”identification” with ”patriotism”, which is ”division” and thus exclusion. The patriotic and national rhetoric was in this sense conflicting and not consensual in its character. Yet, the contestedness of ”patriotism” and ”the nation” dealt not so much with the meaning of the concepts, than with the ability to use these commonly positively evaluated concepts. Despite some republican connotations, the concepts were based on a natural togetherness also heard in the radical pro-reform rhetoric. As a consequence, the question was more about who were able to speak in the name of ”the fatherland” and ”the politically thinking part of the nation” rather than who were able to give the concepts radically new meanings. A rhetor spoke more with ”the fatherland” and ”the nation” than about them. However, performing with a concept always contains potential for the change of its meaning. One does not necessarily need to try to redefine the meaning of the concept in order to change its meaning. In short, the Swedish national liberals had a political concept of “patriotism” in the 1860s, but this political “civic patriotism” was combined with an ethos of togetherness, which was based on an idea of natural togetherness. Thus, the radicals were also looking back into the common past. The rhetoric of “patriotism” obliged then in two ways. On the one hand, the obligation was based on political duties as civic virtues; on the other hand, it 17

Thorild has been called the first folktribun in Sweden, and he was an admirer of the French Revolution who was jailed for a while due to his opinions (Meidal 1987, 188).

204 was based on common origin and fate (e.g. Politisk Tidskrift 6/1862 [1863], 352). Togetherness was created with the help of organic metaphors even in the national liberal discourse, despite the fact that the community – “the nation” – was presented as being based on individual “persons”. The link between “a person” and “the nation” was an association, which was a known idea of Geijer's, as well as, for example, Mazzini's . 18

9.3 On patriotic citizen There was much talk about what “a patriot” should do in order to further the reform. As discussed in the previous chapter, the census criterion created a lively debate on the correctness of census in general and on its application in particular. In addition, the role of the peasants as the examples of diligent and stable members of society was discussed. In the pro-reform campaign, it was common to call all who were supposed to support the Bill “patriots”. The opponents of the Bill, in turn, tried to affirm their loyalty to the fatherland. A real “patriot” was a honoured member of an Estate and a person who calmly, and through an independent judgement, was able to take a stand against the Bill. In principle, all useful and propertied members of society were included in the patriotic position. De Geer explained in his defence of the Bill that it was not meant that the number of political citizens would be considerably higher as a consequence of the reform. There were no intentions to expand “the political nation”. However, this was not so clear to the radical supporters of the Bill who eagerly spoke in the name of “the people” and about “the civic trust”. The republican ideals that were sometimes expressed in Politisk Tidskrift and Fäderneslandet suggested that there were a clear aim to introduce a concept of “political citizenship” into the concept of “fatherland”. It was stated in Politisk Tidskrift:


Mazzini was one of the most important developers of republican patriotic rhetoric during the early nineteenth century. In the 1830s and 1840s, he linked national struggles for freedom with the social question (Mazzini 1907, 57). He also included the poor in “patria” (Viroli 1995, 144-149). He combined republican ideals on political rights and duties of a citizen with an idealisation of a togetherness of patria, which was based on the guidance of God and on families as social units. Individuals were organised in associations in order to avoid that patria would become merely an aggregate of individuals. (Mazzini 1907, 7-122). National identity, i.e. the sense of patria, was based on historical traditions and a feeling of community. Political liberties were in vain, if there did not exist national independence first (Smith 1994, 12-15). Mazzini was worried about that the national idea had corrupted in the world of monarchies and raison d’état taken over “patriotism” (Viroli 1995, 144-156). Due to his anti-monarchism and struggle against privileges, Mazzini has been labelled as a “liberal nationalist”, although he was in many ways closer to the romantic than liberal ideas (Haddock 1999, 313-336; Thörn 1997, 102-106). In fact, Mazzini’s combination of romantic and liberal and republican themes is an illuminating example of radical national and patriotic rhetoric in the middle of the nineteenth century.

205 Hvad som mäktigast upplifvar och eldar den medborgerliga andan, är känslan och medvetandet af att ega ett fädernesland. (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 8).

Despite the rhetoric of “civic mind”, there was no intention to “create a nation of political wiseacres”, but, instead, wake an interest in “public affairs” without which any nation cannot raise to a higher level of political consciousness: Det är icke vår mening, att skapa en nation af politiska kannstöpare. Hvad vi åsyfta, är helt enkelt att hos det uppväxande slägtet väcka den håg och det intresse för offentliga angelägenheter, hvarförutan ingen nation kan lyfta sig till någon högre grad af sedligt och politiskt medvetande. (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1861, 58).

Moreover, there was an emphasis on the need of political education which would generate “a patriotic raise” and prevent a young citizen to “falter on his first steps on the path of the state politics: Likasom naturvetenskaperna rena från öfvertro och fördomar samt utvidga och skärpa förståndet, så alstra de politiska studierna en patriotisk lyftning, föra den unga medborgaren in i det praktiska lifvet – det lif, der han verkligen skall lefva – lära honom att känna sin samtids och sitt fäderneslandets behof, samt hindra honom ifrån att stappla vid de första steg, han tager på statslifvets bana. (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1861, 58-59).

In practice, it was important to educate “a coming citizen” to a common understanding of the way of governing and of political institutions of the country (ibid. 58). There was a paternalistic tone in this sort of view on “the citizen”. No unexpected political activities or ideas were accepted. Moreover, it was again the domestic political tradition that was emphasised. Actually, “political ignorance” was the reason for “political wiseacres” (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1862 [1863], 189). Politisk Tidskrift stated that the need for active interest in political affairs concerned first of all those who already had a vote. Accordingly, there was a difference between “all the citizens of the society” and those who already had a say in political life. (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1861, 59). The rhetorical situation needs to be taken into account, of course. Politisk Tidskrift and others who identified themselves with “national liberals” were in a situation in which they were not able to show any particularly radical political demands. The whole debate on the Bill – as long as it was supposed to be relevant in regards to the final decision – was practised within the conditions the conservative counter arguments produced. There was very little room for radical innovations. Thus, willingly or not, “the national liberals” concentrated on the defence of the Bill. For example, August Blanche, who can be described as one of the leading radicals in Swedish politics in the 1860s, defended the Bill in the Committee on the Constitution and tried to persuade those who he labelled as ”the left” and ”the radicals”. The question at issue was the census of the elections to the Second Chamber, which Blanche defended by explaining that there was no ”skilful and orderly workman” who would not earn the needed amount of money within a year, i.e. 800 riksdaler. According to Blanche:

206 De [the left and radicals] visade sig mycket bekymrade öfver att, till följd af census i andra kammaren, hvilken de icke gillade, så många obemedlade af arbetsklassen blefve uteslutna från representationen. Förgäfves sökte jag trösta dem med den upplysning, att alla af arbetsklassen jag talat med i denna sak, och dessa ha varit många, hafva förklarat sig särdeles belåtna med regeringens förslag och det af goda skäl; ty det finnes väl knappast någon skicklig och ordentlig arbetare i vårt land, som icke förtjenar 800 rdr. Men allt det der hjelpte icke. Det förefaller mig nästan, som om de skriftlärde uteslutande tänkte på sådana medlemmar af samhället, som hvarken kunna eller vilja förtjena någonting, eller på de publikaner och syndare. (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 169 [Blanche]).

Blanche offers here a good example of the definition of a respectful citizen, and of the way of exclusion from the political citizenship. There was no room for loose people who did not work in the category of citizenship (cf. Stenius 1997, 164-165). However, more was needed in order to get a status of political citizenship. According to Politisk Tidskrift, one had to, in addition to contributing to the material well-being of “the fatherland”, improve for individual mental capacities. (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1861, 51-52). 19 The idea of self-help was a leading principle among the liberal intellectuals who were engaged with the question of “the social problem” and who were active in worker’s associations. In these associations, the purpose was not to deal with “theoretical speculations”, but, instead, to improve “the economic independence” of the members, as one of the leading national liberals, Julius Mankell, put it (Mankell 1866, 3, 24). The point is that the workers were to be socially and economically “rooted” in society. In other words, they were to be included as useful members of the society (cf. Rosanvallon 1994, 192-193, 199).

19 ”Vi känna mera än väl de stora fordringar, som det fysiska arbetet hos oss oupphörligt ställer till alla dem, hvars uppgift det blifvit, att med sina händers verk icke blott försörja sig sjelfva och de sina, utan äfven bidraga till upprätthållande af fäderneslandets bestånd. Vi veta, att det dagliga sträfvandet efter bröd, som är den svenska allmogens och arbetarens allmänna lott, icke lemnar många fristunder till andlig förkortan, och vi beklaga djupt, att detta sträfvande mången gång förtynges och förbittras derigenom, att, till följd af en orättvis fördelning af skattebördorna … [M]en vi veta ock, att de fristunder, som finnas, kunna användas på ett vida lämpligare och mera tillfredsställande sätt, än som gemenligen sker.” (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1861, 51-52).


Dessa utgöra hos oss den s. k. historiska skolan, med sin välbekanta fraseologi om ’nationalitet’, ’ursprungliglighet’, ’härmningslusta’, ’främmande lån’’ m. m., - en skola, hvilken nationen i icke ringa grad har att tillskrifva, att dess friare utveckling blifvit hämmad och dess politiska lif fortfarande qvarhållet på samma punkt af betydelselös nullitet. (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 59-60).

It is not an exaggeration to maintain that the debate on the reform bill in the 1860s almost always, to some extent, dealt with the political tradition in Sweden. It was highly rare to claim that the issue of reform should not be scrutinised against the domestic constitutional tradition. However, there were some occasions in which the faith in the tradition was questioned. It was then claimed that there were new principles of political life which had changed the conditions of the political system. “The progress” of human civilisation and the new political ideas which had emerged during the French Revolution were sometimes viewed as being in contrast to the constitutional tradition in Sweden. The quotation above illustrates such a critical attitude, yet it was directed more against the conservatives in particular, than meaning to deny the relevance of the ancient freedom of the Swedish people. Consequently, the tradition was contested, despite the common rhetoric of the ancient freedom of the Swedes. Thus, it was important for the participants of the debate to redescribe certain significant periods of the political history of the country in a manner which suited their current political purposes. Another rhetorical strategy the political actors employed was political timing. In order to legitimise the need of the reform, or the absence of it, it was crucial to be able to affirm that “the time” was right or that it was not. This leads us to yet another important aspect of the rhetoric of time. Namely, together with interpretations of the past and the views on "the right time", it was always necessary to have a convincing picture of the future. Despite the

208 importance of the past in the rhetoric of the reform, the future as “a horizon of expectations” was under constant discussion.

10.1 “Public opinion”, deliberation and consequences of daily politics “The flash of the day” would be a consequence of personal representation, Burke maintained. It was a commonly belief held during the nineteenth century that political progress and democratisation would bring about a phenomenon of daily politics. There were many who tried to reject it and some who welcomed it, but everyone had to take a stand on it. The concept of “public opinion” had become a central factor in political life since the late eighteenth century, and its character was an issue of political debate when political reforms were discussed (e.g. Manin 1997, 167-168). Central questions were: Who created “public opinion”, and how should it be taken into account in political decisions? Should parliamentary deliberations follow “public opinion” or should the representatives follow their own convictions without paying attention to “opinion”? While having grown up in an atmosphere of eighteenth-century public saloons and educated middle-class circles, and having expanded among nineteenth-century newspaper business and voluntary associations, “public opinion” was a political as well as social construct. It was a category different groups tried to appeal to, so as to legitimise their political demands (Baker 1990, 172, 185-190). 1 In general, there were two different understandings of “public opinion”. On the one hand, it was assumed that “opinion” was something that was above the particular interests of different classes and groups of people; on the other hand, it was considered a voice that was based on the feelings of the masses (e.g. Eric Johannesson 1987, 87-92). “Public opinion” had two sides in another sense, as well. During the nineteenth century, there was a gradual shift from a self-legitimisation of the existence of “the opinion” to a demand for the extension of political rights in the name of “the opinion”. “The public” had grown up and began to demand political power (Hölscher 1978, 437). Tocqueville and John Stuart Mill are the foremost early examples of those who – from a non-conservative standpoint – questioned the expanded power of “the public opinion” and pointed out the risks of the rule of the majority in the name of “opinion”. By the middle of the nineteenth century, “public opinion” had become in many European countries a commonly acknowledged political factor which was sometimes appealed to, sometimes criticised. It was a contested concept (Gunn 1989, 260). 1

Dror Wahrman has pointed out the relevance of a contemporary understanding of “public opinion”, i.e. what it meant and what role could it be expected to play, rather than a sociological ‘size’ and ‘location’ of “opinion”. He has also argued against the Habermasian ideal of a perfectly functioning public sphere. (Wahrman 1996, 89-96, 109).

209 The language of “progress” often accompanied the concept of “public opinion”. It was proclaimed that “opinion” followed a general path of progress. “Public opinion” was often taken as “an un-personal agent” in political life (Steinmetz 1993, 287-289). “Progress” and “opinion” followed the march of “time”, heading to the future. The task of enlightened political actors was then to direct “the opinion”. Moreover, the task of a politician was to recognise the right moment when “the opinion” was ready to be taken into account. For example, in the 1830s, ”opinion” played a key role in the rhetoric of Whigs in Britain, whereas Tories tried to deny the relevance and importance of ”the opinion” and argued for a competent deliberation. Whigs were able to use ”public opinion” spontaneously, while Tories tried to react to it afterwards. Accordingly, Tories lacked a consistent attitude towards ”public opinion”. However, in the 1860s, they, too, were capable of speaking in the name of ”public opinion”. (ibid. 243-259, 291). “Public opinion” was closely linked to the idea of the deliberative character of parliamentary assemblies. Those who held that a representative body should represent organic or “true” interests of a society, also often viewed the task of the representative body as deliberative. It was then the enlightened and superior men in parliament who would deliberate on the political matters. This deliberation was then understood as happening within the framework of “the reason of state”. Those who argued for “liberal” principles, widened franchise and parliamentary government took “the public opinion” as their support and viewed the task of deliberation as a type of interplay between listening to “the opinion” and directing it. In such case, the idea of parliamentary deliberation was combined with demands for regular elections and annual parliamentary sessions. As noted in the fifth chapter of this study, Constant stated that “free elections” were the condition of having “a nation” (Constant 1988, 238). Moreover, he argued for public debates and a political newspaper press in order to avoid the shortcomings of delegated power the representative system contained (Constant 1988, 227-242; see also Fontana 1988, 21-24). Tocqueville, in turn, made the point of the Americans having a lively and daily public political life. Regular and frequently held elections were the safeguard against the dangers of the concentration of power, and against the risk of the representative system being merely another form of people’s dependency from their rulers. Political newspapers were the main guarantee of political freedom. (Tocqueville 1998, 78, 359-365). As also noted earlier, John Stuart Mill viewed the representative assembly as functioning as “the deliberative sense of the nation” (Mill 1991, 282-283). This deliberative task of parliament and its connection to “opinion” were then used as an argument for regular elections and, in accordance with a modern parliamentary system, for the possibility of a government to dissolve parliament and arrange new elections. According to Mill, it was essential that ”the general sense of the House should accord in the main with that of the nation”. (ibid. 371-372). Compared with an autocratic political rule as well as with a direct democracy, a modern representative political culture is characterised by temporal pluralism. It is a system of pro tempore in which the present is the

210 main point of reference. Parliamentary politics and regular elections make this present as “extended”, yet limited, whereas in a direct democracy the present can be viewed as unlimited. In an autocracy the reference point is the unlimited future, since there is no change of rule to be predicted. While an autocratic system is hardly deliberative and while a direct democracy rejects the possibility of deliberating representatives, in a representative democracy, which rejects any imperative mandates, the deliberation is in a central role. (Schedler & Santiso 1998, 6-14; Linz 1998, 19-21, 26, 35; Manin 1997, 163, 184-192). As regards to the temporality of politics, the concept of “time” can be understood as chronological time (kronos) which goes forward and which is consumed, and as a contingent time (kairos) which breaks the running of time. 2 In democratic parliamentary politics, the period before the next elections can be taken as an extended kairos situation, or as a sort of in-between-time, a combination of kronos and kairos. (Palonen 1998, 59-60). Modern politics deals to a great extent with timing, for there often is a question of an ability to play with chronological time and contingent kairos situations. 3 “Demands of the times” can be taken as to support demands for a political reform or they can be put forward as an argument against reform plans. Chronological time is then understood as something which states demands as it goes forward. It either calls for a reform or it denies such a possibility (Goodin 1998, 40). However, making political reforms is always a question of choosing the right time, i.e. the appropriate time. Actually, the ability to use chronological time rhetorically as an argument for creating a kairos situation, in which decisive actions are needed, is a task of a skilful politician. 4 As noted in the sixth chapter of this study, making a democratic constitution presupposes a conscious attempt to break with the past and reach out to the future, even if the attempt might be more or less half-heartedly realised. If the Burkean understanding of constitution contains a certain understanding of ”time out of mind” (Pocock 1987b, 380), then a democratic breakthrough can be viewed as a ”time out of time” situation (Goodin 1998, 40, 47). Creating a revolutionary constitution in “a year zero” does not necessarily mean that there is a kairos situation at hand. It, however, brings about a situation in which the chronological time is considered anew. It the present, the past and the future must be reorganised in a new manner.


Time can also be understood as a horizon and as a resource. The former means that one is looking into the future, backward into the past, and at the present-point of seeing. The latter means that time is scarce and non-renewable, a limited measurable quantity. (Schedler & Santiso 1998, 6). 3 Kairos situations are characteristically contingent, while chronological time can be viewed both as linear and contingent. It can be contingent in the sense of erosion of time and, thus, erosion of political rulership. 4 Schedler and Santiso give the following slogans as examples of the rhetoric of ”time”: ”It is time for a change, the time is not ripe yet, first things first, better late than never, one thing at a time, times have changed, we have to keep up with the times” (Schedler & Santiso 1998, 12).


10.2 Redescribtion of the constitution of 1809 and the Riksdag Act of 1810 When the campaign for the reform of political representation began in 1860, the most obvious way to legitimise the need of the reform was to argue that the creators of the constitution of 1809 already had intended to abolish the political Estates. Moreover, it was important to try to show that their own position was in accordance with the ‘good history’ of “the nation” and “the fatherland”. The evaluation and interpretation of the purposes of “the men of 1809” and, consequently, the nature of the Instrument of Government of 1809 and the Riksdag Act of 1810 was often a point of reference in the debates on the reform. It is understandable, since these constitutional texts regulated the political representation, the change of which was at issue. Moreover, it was during the creation of the constitution that the replacement of the political Estates had seriously been taken up for the first time. The Peasants and the Burghers opened the last struggle over the reform with their petitions to the government in October 1860. Both petitions referred to “the men of 1809” and the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution of 1810 in which, as we have seen, the division of political representation into four Estates had been condemned. (Bonde-Ståndets Protokoller 8 1859-60, 523-526; Politisk Tidskrift 2/1861, 64; see also Aftonbladet 14.11.1860). It was argued in Aftonbladet that there was no need to wait any more, for more than fifty years had already passed, although the Riksdag Act of 1810 was meant to have been a temporary solution (Aftonbladet 2.11.1860). Indeed, what better for the beginning of the reform campaign than to quote the memorandum in which it was maintained that the conflicts between the Estates had divided the nation, shaken the peaceful order of society, and overthrown the constitution? It was time to express ”the meaning of the nation” and ”clear away the Estate division” and make ”the spirit of the nation” possible. 5 There was no time to wait any more, for ”time is expensive for the nations as well as for the individuals”. Moreover, there was a danger that ”a nation that did not keep pace with the times would be run over”. (ibid.). The Committee on the Constitution of 1863 opened its memorandum with a historical overview on the issue of reforming the representation. Again, the point of departure was the constitution of 1809 and especially the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution of 1810. It can be noted that those proposals presented during the last fifty years or so which had planned the representation to be based on bicameral system, like the proposal of the Committee on the Constitution of 1840 and the royal proposal in 1848, were presented in a more detailed manner than those based on the classes. (KU 7 1863, 1-7). The point was to show, on the one hand, that there had been several attempts to reform the representation and, on the other hand, that the 5

”[U]ndanrödja ståndssplittringen och möjliggöra en allmän anda, en nationalanda[.] (Aftonbladet 2.11.1860).

212 original intention of “the men of 1809” was to abolish the political Estates and that the Riksdag Act of 1810 was meant to have been a temporary solution. Also, the Central Committee of the reform campaign had the memorandum of 1810 as a point of reference in its pamphlet which was published in April, 1864. According to the Central Committee, the Estates or classes were disliked by ”a predominant part of the nation” and therefore they were out of the question (Central-Komité 1864, 5, 11). 6 Accordingly, the memorandum of 1810 and “the men of 1809” were used as rhetorical tools by the supporters of the reform. They were included in the patriotic position of the reform campaign: Detta memorial, som genom sin frisinnade syftning vittnar om den fosterländska anda, hvaraf 1809 års grundlagsstiftare voro lifvade […]. (ibid. 6).

The point was to argue that the proposal was based on the same principles as the memorandum of 1810 (e.g. Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 144 [Almqvist]). De Geer, too, was careful in his effort to emphasise the continuity within the constitution. He referred to the memorandum of 1810 in his statement to the minutes of the Council of the State and wanted to show that his proposal did not mean a change in the constitution by numbering the paragraphs of the proposal following the Riksdag Act of 1810. (Central-Komité 1864, 18, 26). In Politisk Tidskrift, “the men of 1809” were considered ”patriots”. The destiny of the country had been in their hands. According to the journal, the take-over of “the men of 1809” did not mean ”a revolution” but rather ”a coup d’état” due to the half-way result of the new constitution. 7 There was a good reason to ask, if the country actually had progressed since 1809. The journal came to a conclusion that the constitution of 1809 had in fact legalised anew the estate division, and that the Swedes were thus left behind on the path of progress. (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 55-59). In another article, Politisk Tidskrift expressed its critical interpretation of the constitution and by the same token of ”patriotic songs of praise”, which had become a part of ”political jargon” in the country, and which were created by ”the poets” and ”statesmen”. It was argued that the constitution of 1809 was either a consequence of ”a confusion of concepts” or ”a political fanfare” of those who had secured their own position within society. 8 Accordingly, the constitution of 1809 was an expression of ”a 6

”[A]tt stånds- och klassvalsprincipen, som under tidens lopp rönt allt ogillande hos en öfvervägande del af nationen, numera kan anses, så inom som utom representationen, utdömd.” (Central-Komité 1864, 11). 7 It should be noted that here we have a positive evaluation of ”revolution”, which was quite uncommon at that time even in the radical political rhetoric. 8 ”Emellertid har det oupphörliga framhållandet It should be noted that here we have a positive evaluation of ”revolution”, which was quite uncommon at that time even in the radical political författningens förtjester och den deraf födda frihetens välsignelser, hvilka skalderna lika så väl som statsmännen funnit förtjena patriotiska lofsånger, småningom alstrat en ’politisk jargon’ i landet, som förfört äfven mängen mera upplyst och bättre underrättad medborgare ända derhän, att han slutligen antagit nära nog såsom en trosbekännelse hvad som ursprungligen icke var något annat än antingen en löslig begreppsvillelse hos dem, som icke mäktade inse det verkliga förhållandet, eller en politisk fanfaronnad, hopspunnen af dem, som funno intresse vid att utsprida en

213 sham constitutionalism” (skenkonstitutionalismen). (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 297, 300). The tone of Politisk Tidskrift was openly critical, even provocative. The concept of “patriotism” was used in a pejorative sense, which was not common in the radical political language, and which tells us that ”patriotism” was not so unquestioned a concept as it was often supposed to be. It should be noted that in statements which were made to support “a total” reform of political representation, it was commonplace to refer to “the men of 1809” even when what was actually meant was the proposal made by the 1810 Committee on the Constitution. This way the difference between the Instrument of Government of 1809 and the memorandum of 1810 more or less faded away. This strategy then gave a possibility to position “the men of 1809” on the side of the reform and, at the same time, to criticise the result of the 1809 constitution. The purpose was to play flexibly both with “the men of 1809” and with the shortcomings of the constitution. For the opponents of the Bill, in turn, the constitution of 1809 was positively evaluated. It marked the political tradition, as Pontus Fahlbeck later noted, and the distance from the Age of Liberty (e.g. Södergren 1865a, 70-71). The constitution of 1809 was taken as a necessary and re-balancing measure which did not have any contradictions with the representation by Estates (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 134 [Annerstedt]).

10.3 The historical role of the Estates The interpretations on the constitution of 1809 and the memorandum of the 1810 Committee on the Constitution dealt to a very great extent with the role of the Estates in Swedish political history. The historical role of the Estates was crucial in defining what was considered ”national” when the actual question was, whether the political Estates should be abolished or not. Special attention was paid to the Age of Liberty which was almost unanimously regarded as an unlucky period in Swedish history. The interpretations differed considerably, however, as regards to the reasons for this misfortune in the eighteenth century. The historical role of the Estates was lively debated during the Spring of 1863. The issue became a special target of attention due to a formulation used in the memorandum of the Committee on the Constitution, in which it was maintained that the Estates had often saved the country, and that they had several times served as a powerful protection against both domestic and foreign oppression (KU 7 1863, 7). 9 It was argued at the Burgher Estate that the öfvertygelse af så mycken fördel för befästandet af deras en gång vunna position inom samhället.” (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 297). 9 ”Det torde för otvifvelaktigt få anses, att Stånden hos oss i äldre tider vid flera tillfällen utgjort ett kraftigt skydd mot både inhemskt och utländskt förtryck, samt äfven i sednare i sin mån bidragit att hålla vår statsbyggnad orubbad af de stormar, som skakat de flesta andra europeiska samhällen.” (KU 7 1863, 7).

214 historical experiences of Sweden, as well as those of other countries, proved the opposite than what was stated in the memorandum. Geijer’s maintenance that there had never even been a fifty-year period without drastic changes or revolutions in Swedish history, was taken up to support the argument. Not surprisingly, the Age of Liberty was given as an example of “bad history”. It was also noted that the credit for the revolution of 1809 could not be given to the Estates, but to a few men of courage. The progress the country had seen after 1809 had happened despite the Estates, not because of them. (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 153-154 [Stråle]; Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 18621863, 168 [Blanche]). 10 Moreover, it was stated that in Sweden the Estates had always been on the side of the powerful in the country and not on the side of the masses. Not even the existence of the Peasant Estate had been able to change this fact, for its political position had most often been reduced. 11 Consequently, the love for fatherland was greater outside the Estates than within them. (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 155-157 [Stråle]). The point was, in short, that the Estates or the classes would always primarily represent themselves, and only secondarily the fatherland: [M]an icke må glömma, att den klass- eller ståndsvalde alltid anser sig i första rummet representera klassen eller ståndet, endast i andra rummet fäderneslandet och det gemensamma bästa. (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 156 [Stråle]).

It was maintained that ”the soil evidently moves under the feet of the Estates” (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 137 [Dahm]). Nevertheless, it did not necessarily mean that the Estates had always been a misfortune to the country, only that they were out of date. It was possible to argue that the Estates had already changed in character and that the Bill should be understood as a codification of the old system of representation rather than as something abruptly new. For example, joint elections had already been in use in the two popular Estates. Moreover, the Estates were not pure and unmixed by their character. Thus there was no reason to oppose a mixed electorate (ibid. 137138). It can be noted that this sort of reasoning on the mixed character of the Estates reminds the one ”the conservative” Geijer had used when he argued in favour of the political Estates. De Geer referred also to the changed character of the Estates in his speech at the House of Nobility on March 18, 1863, when the memorandum of the 10

”Icke heller var det Stånden, som år 1809 räddade vår sjelfständighet och frihet, utan några enskilda personers mod och beslutsamhet.” (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 154 [Stråle]). 11 ”Stånden hafva efter mitt förmenande helt enkelt och historiskt uppstått med den starkares eller slugares rätt, och hafva visserligen långt ifrån att representera och skydda de större samhällsklasserna fast heldre alltid undertryckt den större massan, både uti andlig och lekamlig måtto. […] Det är visserligen sannt, att det svenska Bondeståndet härutinnan utgjort ett egendomligt undantag; men den andel, detta Stånd eger uti vår historia, tillkommer detsamma icke inom utan utom representationen, helst det är allom bekant, huru ända intill sednaste tider Bondeståndet varit uti Ståndens förhandlingar och beslut utan betydelse, ja näppeligen deruti fått deltaga.” (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 155 [Stråle]).

215 Committee on the Constitution was discussed. He argued that ”a historical development” had caused the resolution of the Estates, both outside the Estates and within them. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 211 [De Geer]). 12 Consequently, it was possible to argue that the Estates had served well in history and that they were an elemental part of Swedish political life and at the same time demand for the abolition of the political Estates. It was then held that the development of society had created new interests and new classes which did not fit into the framework of the Estates. Moreover, the differences between the Estates had disappeared. Thus, the Estate representation was more like a memory of the past than a adequately functioning institution. (e.g. Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 195 [Ugglas]). 13 In the rhetoric of the past, a rhetorical power of originality was strong. It was important to be able to show that one’s own position was in accordance with the original state of affairs because of the commonly shared opinion about the golden past of the political culture. Consequently, the question whether the Estates were an original part of Swedish political culture or not was of importance. If it was accepted that they did not belong to the ancient political culture, then the “naturalness” of the incorporation of the Estates into Swedish political culture was the central question to be answered. De Geer argued that the Estates had not originally belonged to the Swedish political culture, but instead were of foreign origin (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 211-212 [De Geer]). J. J. Nordström admitted that the representation by the Estates was not the first form of political representation. Provincial representation had been the first, herredagarna the second, and the Estates only the third. However, the Estates did not lack their legitimacy due to their lateness, for the Estates had been rooted in Swedish society. (Nordström 1865, 27, 49-53). Politisk Tidskrift held that “the old constitution” (gamla författningen) did not mention the Estates. According to the journal, there was originally only one estate in the country: “the Common Estate” (odalståndet). Therefore, the representation by the Estates was not original, rather a late-comer and something different than first promised. (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 34, 39). 14 Accordingly, it was important to maintain that the Estates were not originally a part of, nor essential to, Swedish political culture. Politisk Tidskrift quoted a 12

”Den historiska utvecklingen har sedan en längre tid gått ut på ståndens upplösning, mest utom representation, men äfven inom densamma.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 211 [De Geer]). 13 ”Den untveckling, som försiggått, har skapat nya intressen, nya samhällsklasser, som icke inom de gamla Stånden rymmas; och, hvad mera är, den har genomträngt och ombildat sjelfva dessa Stånd och sönderbrutit skrankorna dem emellan. Inom samhället är ståndsskilnaden försvunnen, och de intressen, hvarje särskildt Stånd förr hade att bevaka, hafva mer och mer blifvit gemensam tillhörighet. Under sådana förhållanden qvarstår stånds-representationen endast såsom ett minne, omgifvet af ett för detsamma främmande samhällsskick. Den saknar det underlag inom samhället, den lifskraft, som kunde upprätthålla henne, och föryngrade former förmå ej uppfriska dess vissnande rot.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 195 [Ugglas]). 14 ”[D]e s. k. stånden, såsom representation, långt ifrån att vara något ’ursprungligt’, hvartill man så gerna vill göra dem, just är något sednare tillkommet, något som för resten blifvit ett helt annat, än hvad det från början lofvade.” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 39).

216 famous statement of Thomas Thorild: ”the Estates of the kingdom are the insolvency of the kingdom”. Moreover, the political misfortunes were due to the Estate division. (ibid. 50). In fact, Thorild’s critique was to a great extent used by the 1810 Committee on the Constitution. For Thorild, the four Estates were ”four barbaric nations”, which should be made into ”one people” (ett folk). A man should have a right to vote in his fatherland. A nobleman, a priest, a burgher, as well as a peasant should not vote as a representative of a respective Estate, but instead as a member of the Riksdag, as a citizen. (ibid.). 15 The combination of the concept of “fatherland” and the demand for a right to vote was a sign of a republican conception of ”the fatherland” which was at its height during the French Revolution, and from which Thorild had taken much of his inspiration. In the 1860s, it was, no doubt, effective to argue with a wellknown author, but it also signified that the radicals were somewhat backward looking in their radicalism. The arguments for the Bill were often collected from the past, not to mention the arguments against it. The rhetoric of the past was both about the past and of the past. The use of Thorild was an example of the latter, the role of the Estates of the former. In the national liberal rhetoric, there was a combination of a radical criticism of the past and a commonly shared view on it. The most critical general re-description of the past can be found in Politisk Tidskrift when the journal attacked the canonised interpretation of the freedom of the Swedes by stating that the lack of freedom had been ”their main mistake as a nation” (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 298). 16 It was a rather extreme claim, for it was almost as if the independence of the country had been put into question. However, Politisk Tidskrift remained faithful to the basic canon. There was no doubt about the free origin of the political life in Sweden, even if it had become a name rather than remained a reality. It was the birth of both the worldly and the religious aristocracy which had destroyed the original freedom (ibid.). 17 It was mentioned in the introduction of De Geer’s Bill that the representation had ”grown up from the ground of the nation” and changed according to every demand of the times. The current representation was 15

”Dessa fyra rikets stånd – visar icke vår historia genom tidehvarf af våld, svek och elände, att de äro de fyra rikets obestånd? – Eröfra dessa fyra barbariska nationer. Gör oss till ett folk. Bör en ärlig man i sitt eget fädernesland, åt hvilken han offrar sitt arbete och sitt blod, icke ega sin röst i det allmänna? Och denna rösten rätt, det är proportionerad? Vår på stånd grundade nationalrepresentation är källan till alla våra politiska olyckor; emedan stånden, som uppkomma af hvad medborgare hafva olikt, genom sin natur föranleda idel söndring och upphäfvande af statens enhet, hvars bestånd tryggas endast genom hvad medborgare hafva likt – nemligen en rösträtt. Denna bör vara fotad på den likställiga plan, att hvarenda god man är rätt och laglig herre af sin röst, hvadan ock söndringarne, och de ur dem härflytande olyckorna, icke annorlunda kunna förebyggas, än att en adelsman, prest, borgare, bonde röstar, icke såsom en adelsman, prest, borgare, bonde, utan såsom en riksdagsman, en rätt medborgare.” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 50). 16 ”Det har alltid varit för svenskarne en stor njutning att kalla sig för ett ’fritt folk’. Att de i sjelfva verket varit detta mindre, än de trott eller låtit påskina, har varit deras egentliga hufvudfel såsom nation.” (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 298). 17 ”Ända från den tid, då den urgamla fornnordiska författningen upplöstes, och det verdsliga såväl som det andliga frälset tog sin början, har den svenska folkfriheten varit mera ett klingande namn, än en lefvande verklighet.” (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 298).

217 considered ”faithful to the past” and ”open to the future of the fatherland”. The six Clergy members of the Committee on the Constitution, who opposed the Bill, used this positive evaluation of the Estates and their historical role as a rhetorical tool in their critique against the Bill. They asked why, then, such a representation should be destroyed instead of reforming it gradually? The gradual reform would mean, according to the Clergy members, a transition from the system of Estates to the system of classes. (KU 7 1863, 21-22). The claim that the Estates did not really belong to Swedish political tradition was not widely accepted. It was argued that the Estates were developed spontaneously and successively and that they were outer forms of the inner life of the state (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 348 [Söderberg]). C. G. Uggla, a Noble member of the Committee on the Constitution, maintained that the representation by the Estates had been during hundreds of years ”a building” that had ”protected and promoted the freedom and the development of the society” (KU 7 1863, 21). Perhaps the strongest defence of the Estates was presented by a Clergy member, Vicar Ternström, when the memorandum was discussed. To begin with, the freedom of the country and its welfare and luck were thanks to its constitution of 1809. Moreover, the system of Estates had done nothing wrong; moreover, it was ”the most beautiful representation among all the peoples”. No inner turmoil had occurred within the system which had guaranteed a peaceful development of the country: Den gamla formen, ordningen och ståndsfördelningen har ingenting gjort eller syndat, hvarigenom den förverkat sin rätt. Den har tvertom varit ett palladium till vårt folks upphöjelse. Hvad vi haft och hafva, det veta vi; hvad vi få, det veta vi icke. Skall jag rent ut bekänna min tro, så är det den, att intet folk på jorden har en så vacker representation som vi. Intet folks historia framhåller en i det hela så fläckfri sköld, så enig samverkan, så lugn utveckling, så tryggande författning, som vårt. Betydande inre skakningar hafva hos oss aldrig försports; ty vi och våra fäder hafva samlats omkring vår grundlag; för oss och våra fäder har den alltid haft stor helgd. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 76-77 [Ternström]). 18

However, this kind of glorification of the history of representation and constitution was not so common among the political actors. There was actually quite limited scope for a totally uncritical view on domestic political history. At least the Age of Liberty and periods of absolutist kings had taught most of the participants of the debate to show some critical viewpoints. However, the idea of the legitimacy of the Estates was not at all rejected among conservative circles, despite common arguments for the class elections. It can be noted that the majority of the Clergy members clearly had a conservative or even a reactionary view on politics, but there were also members who had an academic background without too many sympathies for an organic view on the 18

Cf. ”Ty nekas kan icke, att under vårt nuvarande representationssätt landet utvecklat sig i alla riktningar, och kanske är för närvarande vårt folk det lyckligaste på jorden.” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 119 [Wennerström]; see also Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 248 [Agardh]).

218 political representation. Some clergymen could find their political home among the Peasants, as well. For example, it was denied that the Estate representation had ”grown up from the national ground”, as it was stated in the introduction of De Geer’s Bill. Rather, the most educated and wealthiest classes had taken the political power in their hands and only afterwards given the share to the two other Estates. That kind of representation was neither fair nor something which should continue to exist. The self-attending membership of the Nobility was an abnormality, as was the clergymen’s role as the political Estate. (PresteStåndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 82-84 [Säve]). In sum, there were no radical innovations as regards to the role of the Estates in Swedish political culture. The contest in this issue dealt mostly with the question of how domestic and organic the Estates had been in Swedish political tradition. In other words, the question was whether the Estates had been the cause and the defence of the freedom and prosperity of the country or the reason for the misfortunes in the history. The most common way was to argue that the Estates, although not originally a part of the ancient freedom, had become rooted in the society and served the country well, but later on lost their political legitimacy. Then, the Bill was considered as being in accordance with the political tradition as a type of updating measure. It should be remembered that it was not meant that the Instrument of Government should be changed, only the organisation of political representation. The opponents of the Bill admitted often that political Estates needed some reforms, which lead to arguments for the class principle. The historical role of the Estates was seen in a positive light, though some problems might have occurred. In addition, there were some who did not see anything wrong with the Estates. On the other side of the political field, the most radical arguments held that there hardly had been any political freedom in the country due to the Estates, who promoted merely their own interests. The Estates did not have any acceptable place in Swedish political culture and thus they should be abolished absolutely.

10.4 Continuity and constitutional change It was often maintained that only in England and Sweden the constitution had been based on a continuous development and national ground, whereas in other countries ”paper constitutions” had taken over (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 139 [Annerstedt]); Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 154 [Anjou]). The continuos development of the constitution was now in danger, argued the conservatives. The Bill, if accepted, meant a revolution rather than a reform. The reason was that the proposal was made of ”a priori” theories of ”a new social contract” without respect to Swedish history and constitutional

219 tradition. 19 Moreover, the power of the state would be given to the hands of democrats. As a consequence, the King would lost his power and could actually be replaced by a president. A parliamentary government of ministers (ministerstyrelsen) would follow, as well. (Preste-Ståndets Protikoll 1 1865-1866, 230-233 [Westin]). One of the leading conservatives, Nils Tersmeden, stated in his speech at the Riddarhus on March 18, 1863, that the Bill was not Swedish. To him, it was based on foreign theories and it hung in the air; it simply was a new example of ”paper constitutions” which were all too common in the nineteenth century: Såson svensk kan jag ej älska ett förslag till en svensk nationalrepresentation, för hvilket jag ej kan spåra ens det spädaste rotfäste, hvarken i svensk grund, lynne, seder eller svensk historia. Jag kan ej skänka mitt bifall till ett förslag, bygdt så till sägandes i luften, och hvartill man i framtiden lofvar en grund, hvilken ännu blott i en svag ritning är framlagd. Något motstycke till ett dyligt förfarande tror jag knappt något land eller något tidehvarf, åtminstone i lugna tider, kan uppvisa. Uti vår tids stormiga dagar finnas väl dock dylika försök i dessa otaliga pappers-konstitutioner, hvilka som svampar, omvexlande i de flesta länder, uppstått ikring oss med sina parlamenter, der folkväldet påbjudit ständiga ministerombyten omkring en bunden konungamakt. Uti den oro, den jäsning, dessa länder ännu förete, borde vi, i stället att derifrån hemta ett föredöme, snarare se en af försynen oss i vårt lugn gifven varning. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 221 [Tersmeden]).

There was a clear contempt of parliamentary politics and a fear of democracy and, as a consequence, a fear of a decreased power of the King in Tersmeden’sopinion. 20 Moreover, Tersmeden held that the change of the system of representation would mean a change of the constitution, for the constitution had always been closely linked with the form of representation. (ibid. 222). C. Leijonhufud, who was a Noble representative in the Committee on the Constitution of 1863 and one of those who made a reservation to the memorandum, made a distinction between ”historical” and ”rational” grounds for representation in line with a Burkean understanding of constitutional change. His point was that the government had left aside the historical ground of the representation and based it on rational grounds. This meant, in turn, that the Bill would prepare the way for new reforms. Therefore, the Bill ought to be considered not according to its content in itself, but rather according to what it would bring about in the future. There was a danger, stated Leijonhufud, that 19 ”Den nya, som föreslås, synes mig innefatta icke så mycket en af den stora allmänheten åstundad Reform, som fastmera en Revolution, hvars utsträckning och mål ’ligger utom den menskliga beräkningen.’ Man finner i detsamma grundlinierna till ett nästan a priori uppgjordt sytt samhälls-contract, som om ingen Svensk Historia eller Svensk Statsförfattning förut funnes till.” (Preste-Ståndets Protikoll 1 1865-1866, 230 [Westin]). 20 ”Det ligger ett djupt sjelfförtroende hos vår tid och dess nya statsförbättrare i att anse dess nya begrepp om samhället utgöra måttet af all politisk visdom. Ungdomen hemtar ej gerna sina råd från de äldre. Så tycks ej heller den nya tiden lyssna till de gamla tidernas eller historiens röst. Detta förslag synes neml. Bereda en i vår tid hotande demokrati en ökad utveckling; och man tyckes blunda ända nedifrån upp till samhällets höjder, der förslaget har sitt upphof, för de möjliga, att ej säga vanliga, följderna häraf för vår konungamakt.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 222 [Tersmeden]).

220 the Bill would change the constitution in the future. (KU 7 1863, 14-21; see also Nordström 1865, 90). This was an argument of which De Geer had explicitly denied any relevance in his defence of the Bill. One of De Geer’s arguments for the Bill was that a continuous struggle against the reformation of the political representation would lead to a struggle on the constitution, and that was not wanted. The change was to come ”too late” rather than ”too early”. The reform was needed in order to avoid a more thorough change in the future. (Central-Komité 1864, 18). 21 He emphasised the continual and moderate character of the proposal. To him, it was not based on any new theories (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 188 [De Geer]). 22 In fact, he argued against the class representation by maintaining that such system would give too strong position to young civil servants who were still influenced by ”theories of their student times” (De Geer 1865, 29). Nevertheless, De Geer explicitly referred to Tocqueville in his discussion on the progress of democracy and in his legitimising of the “federalist” character of the First Chamber. Moreover, Guizot was used to defend the bicameral system and the principle of the division of powers in his argumentation, and J. S. Mill was used to support his critique against class elections. (De Geer 1865, 6-13, 33). He stated, nevertheless, that no foreign constitution had been an example to the proposal (ibid. 63-64). De Geer defended his own proposal by using organic imagesof society which emphasised continuity, and limited the feeling of a radical change. However, the notion of ”spirit of the times” (tidsandan) and ”the demands of the times” were used in order to demonstrate the necessity of the reform. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 186-187 [De Geer]). J. J. Nordström argued, as the conservative opponents of the Bill did in general, that Swedish representation was not based on any constitutional theories. It had grown up from a domestic ground and developed – in connection with the political, religious, and economic interests – during different periods of time into the current form. The core and the basic principle of the constitution had always been the ancient odalmannafriheten, the freedom of a common man who was not under any other laws than those that he himself had participated in to legislate. It was in accordance with the ancient German tradition of a free peasant. (Nordström 1865, 27, 49-53). 21

”Och äfven för dem, hvilka häruti se en olycka, bör det vara önskvärdt, att förändringen sker under under en tid, hvilken lemnar rum för moget öfvervägande af hvad som bör sättas i stället. Ett uppskof nu kan medföra nödvändigheten att behandla den samhällsvigtiga frågan på en tid, då en lösning på den fria öfvertygelsens väg möter större svårigheter. Det är möjligt att vi ännu icke kommit nära gränsen af detta försent, som dock mången gång oväntadt genljudat öfver andra länder; men jag kan icke inse något skäl, hvarföre närvarande ögonblick skulle vara förtidigt. Utan starka meningsstrider kan visserligen icke en representationsform någonsin ombytas, men om ståndens upphäfvande icke är annat än en tidsfråga, så bör den oundvikliga brytningen, så vidt möjligt är, påskyndas, ty den måste blifva svårare i samma mån, som stånden blifva mera stridande mot tidsandan.” (Central-Komité 1864, 18; Politisk Tidskrift 1862/5 [1863], 262-263). 22 ”[D]et hvilande förslaget gör visserligen icke anspråk på att hafva tillegnat sig några nya upptäckter i statsvetenskapen.” (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 188 [De Geer]).

221 Doctor Runsten, a member of the Clergy Estate, had perhaps the most vigorous conservative arguments against the Bill. He was also the one who most explicitly attacked “the spirit of time” in his pamphlet Om Tidsandan och dess syftemål i och med den nya Representationen, which was published also in the minutes of the Clergy Estate. His main point was that De Geer’s Bill was constructed and supported by referring to “the spirit of time” (tidsandan) and by maintaining that it was “in accordance with the time” (tidsenligt) (PresteStåndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 385 [Runsten]). 23 He maintained that the reform of the representation did not merely deal with the change of the organisation of representation, but instead with the change of the constitution. In order to support his view, Runsten presented an extensive discussion on constitutional change and the French Revolution in particular. He argued that the Swedish reform would be at least as radical as the revolution of 1789 had been, because the Bill was build on theoretical and abstract principles. 24 That there would be no violent disturbances in Sweden did not count. (ibid. 387). Moreover, the proposal was based on the ideas which originated not only from the French Revolution, but also from theories on the social contract according to which an individual was prior to a society. The natural rights were, as a consequence, condemned by Runsten, as well. Not only Hobbes, Grotius, Pufendorf, and Kant, but first of all Locke and Rousseau, were mentioned as examples of this wicked line of theorising. The main mistake in this kind of theorising was the idea of the sovereignty of the people, in which two separate principles were tried to put together, namely the principle of “general equality” and that of “general individual freedom”. To Runsten, these two things were in contradiction to each other: Allmän jemnlikhet och enskild frihet äro nemligen, hvad ock lätt inses, såsom begreppen af allmän och enskild, hvarandras contra motsatser. (ibid. 389).

According to Runsten, these two principles were first combined together at the beginning of the French Revolution, but were soon separated. The former came to mean democracy, whereas the latter liberalism. (ibid.) Actually, Runsten wanted to claim that there was not any principled differences in democratic and liberal ideals. Both were characterised by materialism and the rule of money, as well as by the idea of “progress”. The combination of these principles was nothing but “irreligious”, “cosmopolitan”, “unpatriotic”, and “plutocratic”. (ibid. 389-390).

23 “Man böjer sig i allmänhet och kryper för tidsandan, såsom vore den obetingadt en öfver Folk och Rike allrådande, samt äfvendeles alltid en god ande, den det vore samvetssak att motsätta sig.” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 385 [Runsten]). 24 “Det var Idealet af en ny Stat, uppbyggd på therien af en (in abstracto) uttänkt, blott och bart mensklig, men ock dermed från all både mensklig och gudomlig rättsverklighet abstraherad maktfullkomlighet af en sålunda blott menskligt sjelfvisk beskaffenhet - Ett Statsideal, som alltså, i sig sjelft både omenskligt och gudlöst, ej annat var eller kan vara, än en ljugande drömbild, ett tomt hjernspöke, i menniskoanden afladt af den förgudande tidsandan.” (PresteStåndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 387 [Runsten]).

222 To Runsten, the proposal would create “a new French-Swedish national assembly” which would mean with its annual elections “a people’s power for a day” (ibid. 391). 25 Such a temporalisation of parliamentary politics was against Swedish tradition in which the Estates had created continuity between generations. In a Burkean manner Runsten described the organic continuity and links between the past, the present, and the future. The organic continuity had so far been fully realised only in England and Sweden, and now the Bill endangered it. To him, the Bill was based on principles of a Rousseauan contract: Och så har man här åter det Rousseauska Statsfördraget, eller den samhällstheori, enligt hvilken Statsbyggnadens grundval icke vore annat, än en pappersurkund för dagen, den constitutionela chartan af sednaste datum. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 392 [Runsten]).

The paper constitution for a day! It was not only the hidden idea behind the Bill, it was also explicitly manifested in the first lines of the proposed Riksdag Act, where it was stated that the Swedish people is represented by “the Riksdag” instead of “the Estates of the Kingdom” (Riksens Ständer). Even “National Assembly” would have suited better for Runsted: Men att ock sådan verkligen är den föreslagna nya chartans egen andemening, derom vittnar ju i klara ordalag densamma sjelf redan på första raden i den nya RiksdagsOrdningen medelst den der och sedan allestädes förekommande namnförändringen af Riksens Ständer till Riksdagen. Det skall nemligen icke heta numera: det svenska folket representeras af Riksens Ständer eller ens af Riks- eller Nationalförsamlingen eller af det nya Conventet, utan ännu radicalare: - ‘folket representeras (in abstracto) af Riksdagen’ – det kan väl intet annat betyda, än representationen af den efter opinionsvinden allena styrande folkviljan eller, rättare, ‘tidsandan för dagen’. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 18651866, 393 [Runsten]).

Runsten was, of course, extreme in his conservatism. It is worth noting that this type of reasoning did not have wide support even among the opponents of the Bill. It was far more common to admit that there were some problems with the system of Estates and then try to reconstruct the Estates in a form of classes. “The demands of the time” were, as well, more or less acknowledged by many opponents. One had to somehow adjust to them even if one did not agree with them. Nevertheless, Runsten’s antipathy towards “paper constitutions” was widely shared among those who openly argued for an organic view on political institutions. There was often a social conservative critique against the dominance of capital and moneyed interests combined with the criticism against an inorganic view on society. It gave then an opportunity to attack to the Bill from two sides. On the one hand, it was considered unhistorical and too democratic or liberal; on the other hand, it was accused of being too 25

“En representation nemligen, som endast har i täta och periodiskt jemna valförnyelser sitt egentliga berättigande, är just, hvad democratien i dess grundläggningar är, ett folkvälde för dagen, ett maktuppdrag, nytt med hvarje ny valperiod.” (PresteStåndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 391 [Runsten]).

223 exclusive towards the lower classes and thus in contradiction to its own principles of general equality of citizens (ibid. 393). “A liberal society” was for Runsten merely an aggregate of individuals in which the people were divided into two antagonistic categories: those who owned and those who worked; those who were rich and those who were poor. Such a society was characteristically “materialistic” and “cosmopolitan”. (ibid. 397-407). Runsten was not alone with his strong criticism against the ”revolutionary” Bill. J. A. Södergren mistrusted the ability of Swedish common people to use their political power. This sort of scepticism, which was a part of a conservative rhetoric in general (see Hirschman 1991), led to a conclusion that a constitution should be based on a vigilant and calculating distrust rather than on a credulous hope. 26 Thus, Södergeren rejected the possibility of a revolutionary constitution. ”Revolution” was for him the counter concept to ”constitution”. (Södergren 1865a, 8-9). Moreover, he asked, why should incompetent people have the right to representation now, if the progress would make them capable of it in the future? (ibid. 21). To Södergren, a constitution could not be imported from other countries, for every country had its own circumstances, national character, customs, needs, and nature. Abstract ”paper constitutions” lacked the sense of the life of a nation. The Norwegians, instead, had been able to create their constitution without any previous struggles on the issue of representation. In addition, they had not had any political newspaper press which would had spread harmful political thoughts. (ibid. 73-74). The case of Norway seems to imply that Södergren actually had a positively evaluated view of a revolutionary constitution which was not based on any historical tradition. 27 A same sort of notion on the role of the history in making the constitution was made by Lars Johan Hierta who held that De Geer’s proposal was a compromise, since it had to take into account the historical tradition and the resistance of the two upper Estates. 28 This had not been the case in Denmark where the national representation had been created out of no previous historical experiences. Hierta thus acknowledged the role a tradition played in the creation of a national representation and, as a compromise, supported the Bill: [R]egeringen icke hos oss i detta hänseende haft lika fria händer, som varit fallet i Danmark, der ingen nationalrepresentation förut fanns och sålunda icke något förut befintligt behöfde maka åt sig och lemna rum åt något nytt. Den föreliggande bestämmelsen torde derföre böra betraktas såsom en måhända nödvändig kompromiss, 26

”Konstitutionens text skall vara, icke det godtrogna hoppets, utan det vaksamma och beräknande misstroendets verk. Uti den politiska erfarenheten finnes mycket, som högt varnar för sådant allmänt förtroende till den stigande upplysningen och de goda moraliska egenskaperna hos de individer, hvilka af politiska anledningar sammanföras till gemensamma beslut och handlingar.” (Södergren 1865a, 9). 27 As noted in chapter six, also Burke accepted and supported the American Constitution despite its revolutionary character exactly on this ground. 28 Hierta hoped that the proposal had been based more on principles which laid behind the constitution of Norway and Denmark. The right to vote should be given to all men (sic) who were 30 years of age or more and who paid taxes. [.]”(Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 161 [Hierta]).

224 afsedd att minska de två första Ståndens motstånd mot förslagets antagande. Vid sådant förhållande anser jag det vara en fosterländsk pligt att låta dessa betänkligheter vika[.] (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 1862-1863, 161 [Hierta]).

The difference between Södergren and Hierta was, among other things, that while Södergren saw it possible for Norway to create a constitution on a new ground, Hierta did not see it possible for Sweden to do so. According to Södergren, the Norwegians were calm and thoughtful with a strong feeling of nationality, whereas the Swedes were the opposite: agitated, passionate, and admirers of foreign patterns. However, ”Swedish national character” was also described as something which did not encourage people to participate in daily political affairs. One the one hand, the national character was considered calm and thoughtful and as a justification to gradual reforms; on the other hand, the passionate character of the Swedes, together with the daily politics and a consequent confusion, was the scenario Södergren tried to picture in order to warn against the Bill. Another problem with the national character was that it was not completely changeable through education. (Södergren 1865a, 65, 73-79). 29 As noted, the term ”paper constitution” was used by those who referred to the danger of creating a constitution according to political ideals without an organic continuity with the political tradition. Politisk Tidskrift turned this “rhetoric of paper” against the Nobility. It had lost the original honour and spirit of a nobleman and was thus nothing but ”a parchment or paper nobility” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 44). 30 The monarchs were not safe, either. Lars Johan Hierta argued that the Swedish kings had been behind both the good and the bad in Swedish history, not only the good (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 18621863, 158 [Hierta]). 31 In Politisk Tidskrift, there was an emphasis on the coalition of the kings and the people, but this coalition had worked out only if the monarchs had turned on the side of the people: Aldrig har vårt fädernesland varit olyckligare, än då en maktlysten konung sökt befrämja sina egna fördelar, på bekostnad af folkets frihet och välfärd; och aldrig har det varit lyckligare, än då det egt regent, som med hofsamma begär och under oegennyttiga


”Hos oss torde för sjelfva samhällsordningens bestånd de omstörtande lärorna blifva först då egentligen farliga, om deras förfäktare och blinda anhängare – få öfvermakten inom representationen. […] Fåfäng är den tro, att genom långt drifna efetrgifter åt de demokratiska anspråken skulle vinnas någon trygghet att dessa hejda sig. Deras natur och syfte är ett ständigt ’framåtskridande’. Om de få taga representationen i besittning och genom personantalets blinda öfvervigt släpa med sig glest spridda representanter af verklig intelligens, måste deras slutliga, om icke deras första angrepp gälla den genom saknadt stöd af representationen redlös blifna konungamakten” (Södergren 1865a, 79). 30 ”Den närvarande pergaments- eller pappersadeln är en karikatyr på den ursprungliga, hvilken sistnämnde aldrig mera skall kunna återupplifvas[.]” (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 44). 31 Hierta held that the reservation made by the Clergy members of the Committee on the Constitution was a positive deed because it showed the real political character of the Estate. Some radicals, e.g. R. T. Carlén and August Blanche, held the opinion that the shortages of the Bill made it possible to have it passed (Protokoll, Borgare-ståndet 3 18621863, 166, 169).

225 sträfvanden för allmän bästa, sökt att i frid och endrägt rådsammas med folket om dess offentliga angelägenheter. (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 53).

However, There is a paradox in the rhetoric which praised the coalition between the kings and the people. While it was put to serve purposes which persuaded the King to join the side of the reform, it also limited the possibilities of radical politics by virtue of the loyalty towards the King and the monarchy. As noted earlier, Politisk Tidskrift held that every free country had a constitution which was based on a consent between the government and the people. However, the statement should not be understood so that only a Lockean or Rousseaun social contract was acceptable. The journal referred to the ancient consent between the people and the king, as well (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 1011). Thus, the statement can be taken as supporting also the traditional view of the free and egalitarian past of Swedish political culture and not as such in contradiction to the traditionalist line of thought.

10.5 On “progress” and “public opinion” The role of tradition was given some clearly radical interpretations in the debate. Carl Fredrik Ridderstad, 32 who was one of the national liberal radicals later to be associated with the nyliberals, agreed with the conservative members of the 1863 Committee on the Constitution that the proposal was not based on Swedish historical tradition. This was not, however, something to be concerned about. According to Ridderstad, political representation could not be based on tradition because of ”the demands of times”: Man säger i dessa reservationer, att det Kongl. förslaget icke hvilar på någon historisk grund. Deri har man efter min uppfattning fullkomligt rätt. Men en representationsförfattning, öfverensstämmande med vår tids fordringar kan knappt nog hvila på någon sådan grund; sjefva historien kan aldrabäst derom öfvertyga oss. (Protokoll, Borgare-Ståndet 3 1862-1863, 645 [Ridderstad]).

This statement was based on a view that ”constitutionalism”, ”Human Rights”, ”freedom”, and ”equality” – at least before the law – had totally changed the epoch the people were living in. The French Revolution was the new beginning after which there was no previous history to lean on, only the future: Detta är år 1789, då franska revolutionen utbröt. Ur dess demokratiska grund hafva sedermera och under årens lopp konstitutionalismens sanningar utbildat sig, sådana som vår tid behöfva dem. Och dessa ega i sjelfva verket ingen forntid, men de hafva framtid i stället. Det är sannt, att de icke ännu äro fullkomligt och öfver allt erkända, men de skola 32

Ridderstad was the editor of the newspaper Östgöta Correspondenten in the town of Linköping. He was a former Noble representative who became a member of the Burghers in 1859. (Eric Johannesson 1987, 72, 111-113).

226 blifva det. Alla stora idéer hafva sina strider, sitt motstånd; men de dö icke, de lefva och segra. Jag skulle kunna jemföra idéen med gasen. Idéen kan liksom gasen instängas, fångas, komprimeras. Men förmår den blott bryta sig om ock den aldra minsta möjlighet till frihet, skall hela idémassan, liksom hela gasmassan, på en gång strömma ut, och finnes då en tändande gnista i grannskapet, följer explosionen ögonblicket, sönderbrytande det fängslande kärlet. Må man akta sig derför. (Protokoll, BorgareStåndet 3 1862-1863, 646 [Ridderstad]).

Ridderstad declared that ideas were like gas: they could be shut in, but if they got the smallest amount of freedom, then the explosion was evident. He stated, moreover, that the new ideas were going to win in the long run. A warning signal to all opponents of the Bill was clear. It must not be rejected, for it would bring about an explosion sooner or later. Indeed, ”its too late” was an often heard slogan during the debates on the reform (e.g. Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 146 [Almqvist]; see also Eric Johannesson 1987, 158-164). Politisk Tidskrift linked the development of constitutions with the idea of progress perhaps even more clearly. The progress of humanity, civilisation, enlightenment, education, and technical innovations were the reasons behind the conclusion that ”the history never repeats itself” (Politisk Tidskrift 7/1862 [1863], 38-41). The conclusion was then developed in a manner which at first sight could be called a non-anachronistic or contextual view on constitutions: När man sålunda t. ex. påstår, att den eller den statsförfattningen är oduglig, derföre att den redan varit försökt och misslyckats i tillämpningen, så måste man också hafva klart för sig, huru de tidsomständigheter och förhållanden voro beskaffade, under hvilkas inflytande ett sådant misslyckande skedde. En statsförfattning kan lika väl vara för tidigt som för sent tillkommen. (Politisk Tidskrift 7/1862 [1863], 44).

Thus, the political situation in which a new constitution has been created should be taken into account. The argument can be seen as a defence against claims which denied radical political reforms by referring to the experiences of the French Revolution. However, the taking into account of the political situation did not mean that there would have been an anti-teleological understanding of history. On the contrary, in Politisk Tidskrift there was a strong tendency to view history, and political history in particular, as a progressive process of development. Consequently, it was the state of progress that demanded for changes in a constitution. According to the journal: [A]llt menskligt är stadt uti en oupphörlig utveckling, hvarföre äfven en statsförfattning, om den fullt skall motsvara hvad man eger rätt att fordra deraf, måste i sig sjef innehålla sådana möjligheter till tidsenliga förbättringar, hvarförutan det politiska lifvet snart blir stillastående och framvisar bilden af ett stagnerande träsk. (ibid.).

Therefore, it was not necessarily possible to apply a republican constitution to an old monarchy or an absolutist system to a country with democratic laws, the argument went (ibid.). Such a view on progress was then developed further as an argument against revolutionary changes. One should not try to precede the stage of development, for such a revolution had often turned into a reaction. On the other hand, one should not preclude progress either. What one should

227 do, instead, was to ”take part into the movement” which goes along with the current of the progress so as to make political institutions ”accord with the demands of the time” (tidsenliga) and to save a peaceful state of society (Politisk Tidskrift 7/1862 [1863], 45-46, 50-51; see also Politisk Tidskrift 3/1863 [1864], 568-569). Moreover, the progress worked for ”the true concept of fatherland”, for ”egoism” must give way to ”the public” (Politisk Tidskrift 7/1862 [1863], 49). The claim that there was a new epoch at hand can be related to Koselleck’s thesis on Sattezeit during which political concepts gained new meanings which often were future-orientated. To appeal to “the progress” was in itself the clearest sign of such change. As discussed in the sixth chapter of this study, the temporalisation of political language meant also that “the horizon of expectations” came to be an increasingly dominating factor in political thought and action. However, the fact that the Swedish supporters of the reform Bill almost always legitimised the need of the reform by referring to the domestic tradition, suggest that the rhetorical situation was more complex than could be characterised simply by stating that “the space of experience” would have lost its position as a crucial point of reference to “horizon of expectations”. The conclusion would be, rather, that the supporters of the Bill had a wider arsenal of arguments due to their ability to speak more convincingly in terms of the future than those who were against the Bill. They had problems with the concepts of “progress” and “public opinion”, as will be shown later. Thus, it was common to appeal to progress among the supporters of the Bill. De Geer stated that class elections were against “the laws of movement” and they did not have any “future”. The classes, not to mention the Estates, were outdated because “time does not stand still”. (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 187 [De Geer]). Consequently, “the future path of progress” was the argument for the joint elections (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 196 [Ugglas]). “The progress” was linked with a view of ”the democratic spirit” which was ”the spirit of the age” and ”the air we breathe”, as the Noble representative Ernst Weidenhjelm put it (Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 1 1865-1866, 205 [Weidenhjelm]). One of the relatively few supporters of the Bill in the Clergy Estate, dean Gumælius, argued for the Bill during the final debate in December 1865. His point was that “the times” demanded the reform. The system of Estates had been “in accordance with the times” (tidsenlig), but not any longer. To conserve all that had existed would damage the whole society. There were ”requirements of the new time” (nya tidens behof). The proposal had a merit of agreeing with the ideas which were common among the peoples in Europe in general. It was “in accordance with the times” which meant that it was build on ”a democratic ground”. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 171-174 [Gumælius]). 33 The democratic ground of the proposal 33 ”Det Förslag till representationens ombildning […] har dock en stor, i ögonen fallande förtjenst, att det öfverensstämmer med de idéer, som i allmänhet röra sig hos de Europeiska folken och hos dem hunnit till ett allmännare erkännande. Det är i följd deraf fullt tidsenligt. Således i detta hänseende motsatsen till hvad vi förut äge. Hela den nyare tidens rigtning är democratisk. I den rigtningen har äfven Statens utbildning i sednare tider

228 meant that it ”permitted the participation of the whole people” in the representation. It should be noted that ”democratic” was here something other than, and rather a counter concept to, “the rule of a power-hungry people” (maktlysten folkstyrelse). 34 The proposal was democratic, for it was “in accordance with the demands of the times”. (ibid. 177). Moreover, it was “democratic”, but not ”radical” (ibid. 185). Obviously, Gumælius tried to persuade the opponents to join the side of the Bill by emphasising the difference between democracy and the power of the people. The latter was something that might be the consequence if the Bill was defeated. In fact, Gumælius spoke in Tocquevillean terms when he separated “democracy” from “the power of the people” and associated it with the idea of progress by stating that “democracy” was “in accordance with the times”. He stressed the moderate and non-extreme character of the Bill. The proof of that was that there was a line of demarcation which distinguished the lower and least educated ”elements” from the vote. (ibid.). ”The lowest and least educated elements of the society” were not included in ”the people”. A more open concept of “the people” would be actual only in the future when the lowest people would be more educated, and mature enough for such an inclusion. Any hasty and ”theoretical whims” would not do. (ibid. 178). Gumælius pointed out that ”a democratic” reform would not be in contradiction to the power of the King. Neither should the government be worried about democracy if it was willing to govern in accordance with the common good. (ibid. 179-181). As mentioned in the second chapter of this study, the figure of the "reform King" was often used especially during the last autumn of the campaign. According to Gumælius, the King was at the same time persuaded, pressed, and flattered. The rejection of the Bill would spread alarm among the people, and moreover, risk the country’s international position and give an opportunity to ”the enemies” which ”were not in the habit of oversleeping” (ibid. 184). However, appealing to “progress” was not merely a rhetorical figure of the supporters of the Bill. The idea of progress was so widely accepted that even those who opposed the Bill wanted to speak in the name of “progress” and “the future”. There was a rhetorical strategy behind the use of such rhetoric. It was argued that because of the tendency of progress, it was necessary to have guarantees in the constitution and limitations to the participation in political representation. Tocqueville was a useful point of reference also here, for his cautious attitude towards the capacity of the masses, in combination with his maintenance that the progress of democracy was hos oss gått. Det nu framlagda Representationsförslaget är afven byggt på democratisk grund, så vida det medger hela folket deltagande i den makt, som enligt grundlagen medgifves landets representation.” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 174 [Gumælius]). 34 ”Ur en genom kunskapens förädlande kraft upplyst och genom deltagande i Statens vigtiga angelägenheter bildad och erfaren democrati skall ändå det blifvande samhällsskicket slutligen utgå. Ju förr man kommer dit, dess hastigare aflägsnas faran för orolig, maktlysten, men för maktens rätta och visa bruk ännu ej mogen folkstyrelse.” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 177 [Gumælius]).

229 inevitable, could be used as an argument both on the conservative and the liberal side of the struggle (e.g. Södergren 1865a, 16-19.). Bishop Anjou, for example, stated that because of the progress of the fatherland the acceptance of the Bill would be harmful. To him, the old system would successively change itself according to the demands of the times. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 18621863, 150 [Anjou]; see also Protokoll, Ridderskapet och Adeln 3 1862-1863, 222 [Tersmeden]). It was worth trying to present oneself as a supporter of democracy and a strong believer in progress. This in turn could be used as a justification of the politics which opposed the reform. It was then maintained that the historical process of progress would take care of the chances that were needed. Political actions and reforms like De Geer’s proposal would only create disturbances in the natural progress. (Protokoll, Borgareståndet 1 1865-1866, 114-115 [Henchen]). The difference between the opponents of the Bill and its supporters was that the former tried to explain that the progress takes care of the needed changes without radical political decisions, whereas the supporters of the reform appealed to progress in order to persuade others of the importance of the political decision. The difference between the standpoints was articulated by J. J. Nordström who, of course, characterised the conservative point as “real progression” (verkliga framåtskridande): Hvad de s. k. konservative vilja, det är att konservera samhället genom att uti institutioner och lagar hålla vid magt det pröfvade goda, så länge de anse sådant utan skada för det hela och utan hinder för dess verkliga framåtskridande kunna ske. Hvad de s. k. liberala vilja, det är att genom ett fortgående utbyte af det pröfvade gamla mot något nytt, om ock ännu opröfvadt, drifva sasmhället framåt i den af dem utstakade rikning. (Nordström 1865, 19).

As a consequence, it was possible for Nordström to claim that the issue of reforming the representation had been a target of a public discussion only for ”some decades” (ibid. 24). As we have seen, it was usually argued that the question of representation had been left unsolved for too long. The opponents of the Bill tried to answer to the claim by stating that any kind of agitating activity had proved to be dangerous in other countries where the consequences of reforms had caused only disturbances and destroyed the basis of constitutions. What was needed instead, was calm consideration. (e.g. Södergren 1865a, 1). The rhetoric of “progress” and “the spirit of the times” was closely connected to the rhetoric of “opinion”. According to Politisk Tidskrift, “public opinion” was the foremost great power of the nineteenth century (Politisk Tidskrift 4/1862 [1863], 251). The reform of the representation was linked with the progressive “public opinion”: Fortgår rörelsen på samma sätt, som den börjat, skall slutligen en så mäktig och allmän opinion uttala sig för en representationsförändring, som motsvarar icke blott den enskildes billiga fordringar, utan äfven hela folkets sanna väl, att alla protester från de

230 privilegierade kasternas sida skola blifva fullkomligt vanmäktiga. (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1861, 35).

The reform was ”not only the big question for today, but also for the welfare of the fatherland in the future” (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1862 [1863], 142; see also Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 292-293). 35 Thus, the “public opinion” which demanded the reform was defined as “patriotic” and future-orientated in the national liberal rhetoric. In other words, “the public opinion” had a “patriotic” direction, which had already by-passed the Estates: [Dessa inkarnerade ståndsledamöter] då de sjelfva obestridligt utgöra en ringa minoritet af nationen, kunna de omöjligt bygga sitt motstånd på den allmänna opinionen, ty denna har långt för detta gått stånden förbi och tagit en allmännare, mera fosterländsk riktning. (Politisk Tidskrift 2/1862, 127).

The national liberal conception of “the public opinion” was, together with “progress” and “civilisation”, characteristically meta-historical and, consequently, something which had more or less its own direction and path. Although it was connected to “liberal” associations and the press, as well as to “the principle of persons”, it was, nevertheless, understood as something which rose above the daily politics: [V]i här med den allmänna opinionen icke mena ett flyktigt politiskt vindkast för dagen, utan djupare grundorsak och väsendtligare betydelse; vi mena dermed ett sådant otvetydigt, ur tids- och folkmedvetandet föranledt uttryck af den allmänna viljan, hvilket så mycket mindre bör och kan missförstås, som det redan är alldeles påtagligt och faktiskt och hunnit bilda sig en fast och orubblig öfvertygelse. (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 293).

Obviously, it was risky to appeal to practises of daily politics and to “political wind blows of the day”, even if one was promoting such practises. However, the faith in progressive “opinion” was strong and therefore there were not necessarily so much rhetorical strategy and skills involved when “political wind blows” were condemned. For the conservatives, ”the public opinion” was ”enlightened”, ”sober”, and ”serious”, not ”a wind blow at the street corner”, nor the opinion of the newspapers. ”The public opinion” was more like a spirit than a voice. It was created by the citizens who ”had the concepts” of the issue in question and who were not guided by passions. (e.g. Södergren 1865a, 59). Bishop Anjou, one of the Clergy members of the 1863 Committee on the Constitution, associated ”opinion” and ”agitation” and put them against ”the welfare of the fatherland” (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 149 [Anjou]). Thus “the opinion” was not in the same boat as “the fatherland” as in the pro-reform rhetoric. Yet, “the 35 ”Det ges vanligen ett sätt att pröfva politiska personligheters sannskyldiga folkvänlighet och patriotiska karakter, hvilket sällan plägar slå felt. Tala till dessa personer om den allmänna opinionen, dess behörighet och inflytande – och det skall snart röja sig, hvar de äro hemma. Det fordras en icke ringa grad af frisinthet, för att hysa aktning för den allmänna opinionen.” (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 292-293).

231 real opinion” was not in conflict with patriotic attitude, for in a constitutional political system ”the representation” was the first interpreter of ”the public opinion”. The representation was a deliberative body in which ”the opinion” was formed through debates: Uti det konstitutionela samhället är representationen både enligt sin idé och i verkligheten egnad att vara den förnämsta tolk af ’den allmänna meningen’ så mycket mer tillförlitlig, ju mer verklig sakkunskap och kännedom af förhållandena inom samhällets olika territoriala delar, hon i sig inneslutar. Det är dock ej genom en tyst enstämmigket, för att så säga, som hon åt denna mening gifver ett verkligt uttryck, utan fastmer genom debattens med hofsamhet parade värma, genom mångfalden af skälen för och emot och denna de olika åsigternas mångsidiga friktion, ur hvillken gnistan tändes till sanningens rätta belysning. (Nordström 1865, 18).

The point is that there should not be any external pressure from the representative body. Each and every representative ought to deliberate independently without needing to take into consideration “opinions” which were voiced without “knowledge”. It was argued that the proposed reform would bring about a political culture in which the newspapers would lead the country, since the government would lose its power to the majority in the Riksdag which in turn would be led by ”the public opinion” and finally by the papers. All this would mean that there would be ”election intrigues”, ”divisions”, and ”party hatreds” and that ”the mob” would blindly follow the lead of radical papers and even ”communistic propaganda”. Instead, wise ”statesmen” were needed. (ibid. 25-27, 36). Accordingly, there was a problem with “the opinion” among the conservatives. On the one hand, it was accepted, and on the other, it was rejected. For example, a Clergy member, Dean Palmlund, had a dilemma with ”the opinion”. He acknowledged that ”a common opinion” in the country had expressed the need for the reform. However, ”the so called public opinion” had pressed against the representatives’ independent right to decide upon the matter. To him, the decision should be an outcome of a calm deliberation instead of a pressure. (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 317 [Palmlund]). In a situation like this, it was practical to refer to liberal critics of “the opinion”. It has already been noted that the authority of Tocqueville could be used both for and against the Bill. The case was the same with John Stuart Mill, whose On Liberty was referred to by a Clergy member Doctor Rundgren, in order to give support to his decision to vote against ”the public opinion” and thus against the Bill (Preste-Ståndets Protokoll 1 1865-1866, 362 [Rundgren]). The controversial meaning of “the public opinion” was not left unnoticed in the rhetoric of the opponents of the Bill. In fact, J. J. Nordström based his arguments against the Bill on a critical notion of the uses of the concept of ”public opinion”. He demonstrated with several historical references how ”public opinion” often had been a tool in the hands of demagogues and how it often had been in wrong. According to him, ”the public opinion” could express the importance and need of a political and institutional reform and even show the right direction, but it could not articulate how the reform should be brought

232 about. 36 The latter was a task of ”a statesman”, who, with his special knowledge and calm consideration, was above ”the opinion” and ”party men”, and whose task was to take care of the welfare of the society by ”seeing the future in the mirror of the past”. (Nordström 1865, 8-16). By stating that the purpose was to see the future in the mirror of the past, Nordström actually put in the nutshell the temporal aspects of the debate. The conflict involved in the issue of the reform was actually not about the looking in the mirror of the past. Rather, it was about how to interpret the image in the mirror, and what conclusions should be drawn from that image.


”En ’allmän mening’ om önskligheten och behöfligheten i olika hänseenden af förändrade institutioner, lagar och bestämmelser kan i följd deraf väl utbilda sig, göra sig aktad och hörd och afven beteckna riktningen och målet för reformerna; men då fråga blir om utförandet, om detta allvarliga huru, som, vid hvarje försök att sätta i utöfning de sålunda i allmänhet uttalade och i allmänna satser affattade åsigter och önskningar, utgör pröfvostenen för dessas verkliga halt och värde, då – upphör ’den allmänna meningen’, vore den än så stark, att vara den kompetenta ledaren, då vidtager statsmannens arbete. Det är honom den speciela pröfningen tillkommer.” (Nordström 1865, 14-15).



I have studied how the concept of “national representation” was used in the debate over the 1866 parliamentary reform in Sweden. Moreover, I have given a historical, as well as an intellectual, background to this usage. My point of departure has been the combination of the concepts of “representation” and “nation” of the French Revolution, which, for the first time, described political representation as a constitutive aspect of a “nation”. During the nineteenth century, those who campaigned for parliamentary reforms often used the revolutionary language of “nation” in their rhetoric. The concept of “national representation” was then understood as involving the demand for an extension of political rights. As discussed in chapter seven, the development of political representation was – and has been – described as a change from the representation of provincial interests to the representation of social interests, and furthermore, to the representation of the whole of society. This whole was articulated in terms of “the nation” in the pro-reform campaign and in the national liberal rhetoric, in particular. There were two main understandings of “national representation” in the debate. The concept of “national representation” meant the current institution of political representation, in which case the Estates were included in the concept. This kind of use of the concept was common to both sides. It was a part of the political tradition to speak about “national representation” without any particularly radical connotations. The supporters of the Bill sometimes used the term in such a manner. Despite the shortcomings of the body of representation, it was nevertheless “national” in the meaning of “historical”. However, there were those who supported the Bill and made a clear distinction between the current representation and “the national representation”. The national liberals often used the concept of “national representation” consciously in a ‘revolutionary’ manner. “The national

234 representation” in its “complete and valid sense”, as Politisk Tidskrift put it, was something other than the representation based on the Estates or classes. Moreover, a creation of a real “national representation” was seen as “a political rebirth of the nation”: En och hvar i vårt land, som vill framåt och är öfvertygad derom, att försummade ögonblick, då de gäller en nations politiska pånyttfödelse, aldrig utan dyrköpt ånger och på bekostnad af vigtiga fördelar kunna återvinnas, kastar naturligtvis i närvarande stund, med lika mycken uppmärksamhet som en af det förflutnas lärorika varningar framkallad fruktan, sina blickar på de begge folkvalda stånden. (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1862 [1863], 138).

The notion of “a political rebirth of the nation” clearly signifies that the Swedish national liberals had a constitutive understanding of the combination of “the nation” and “representation”. This idea of nation-by-representation indicates a constructive model of representation, according to which the collective has no prior form before it is represented. Consequently, “the nation” was recreated by the political representation. Thus, the Swedish national liberals joined the European tradition of political radicalism which took many of its ideals from the French Revolution. It was sometimes stated very explicitly, as the example of Ridderstad in Chapter ten showed. According to this national liberal politician and newspaperman, the French Revolution opened a new period after which there was no historical ground for representation (Protokoll, Borgare-Ståndet 3 1862-1863, 645 [Ridderstad]). However, this kind of radicalism was often combined with the common way of referring to the domestic political tradition. In particular, the idea of the coalition between the people and the kings was often repeated. This mixture of radicalism and traditionalism made the national liberal rhetoric in many respects appealing to a wide audience, but at the same time it took the sting out of their radicalism. The Estates abolished themselves in Sweden without having declared themselves a Constitutive Convention or a National Assembly. Unlike in France in 1830 and 1848, there was no revolutionary situation in Sweden. The Parliament Act of 1832 in Britain was, in turn, not a reform which had considerably changed the structure of political representation. In this light, the 1866 Riksdag Act was of a quite special character. The task of an “innovating ideologist” was then particularly demanding. As discussed in chapter four, her/his task is to use linguistic conventions rhetorically in a manner that even a radical action can be made to seem acceptable. Because the traditional Estates were to decide upon the Bill, it was necessary to appeal to tradition in order to legitimise the need of a thorough reform. Had there been a constitutive assembly, then, in principle, the legitimising power of tradition might have been of less importance. In particular, the national liberal supporters of the Bill were active in employing “national” and “patriotic” descriptions of the necessity of a thorough reform. The task of an “innovating ideologist” fell, first of all, upon De Geer. He had to convince the opponents of the Bill of the fact that the reform would be in

235 accordance with tradition. Yet, simultaneously, he had to demand for great changes in representation. What he did, as well as the other supporters of the Bill in general, was that he used favourably evaluative-descriptive terms in his effort to legitimise the actions he proposed. He appealed to a language of organism in his defence of the Bill. Instead of the Estates or classes, the organism was maintained by the municipalities which were included to the formation of the First Chamber. Moreover, the rhetoric of “nation” and “patriotism” was useful in this respect. An “apologist” – a counterpart to an “innovating ideologist” – who opposed the Bill would try to describe the existing system in favourably evaluative terms. It was important to be able to argue convincingly that society and, as a consequence, the political institutions were organic in character. In principle, this task was not too difficult. The problem for an “apologist” was, rather, that there were different understandings of what was understood as organic. It was important for an “apologist” to refer to the freedom that was under serious threat if the Bill was passed. The opponents of the Bill tried also to play the role of an “innovating ideologist” by introducing the system of class elections as a substitute for the Estates. However, this attempt was neither new nor successful. An “innovating ideologist” had more possibilities than an “apologist” in regards to foreign patterns. The opponents of the Bill were more or less left without inspiring examples outside the domestic political tradition, whereas the supporters had Norway and Denmark as their references. In the rhetoric of the Scandinavianists, it was argued that Sweden should develop its representation to the level of other Scandinavian countries in order to create better possibilities for a union between the countries. Neither part of the debate wanted to refer to Napoleon’s France or Bismarck’s Prussia in the 1860s. The English political system offered some possibilities to both sides of the debate. For the supporters of the Bill, England was the model of modern parliamentary politics, although they did not openly argue for parliamentarism. They also directed some criticism towards the “aristocratic” – as it was referred to – House of Lords. An “apologist”, in turn, held that only England and Sweden had a constitution of ancient origin. However, the opponents of the Bill had difficulties with England while they tried to argue with the help of England for an organic understanding of constitution, and at the same time prevent the introduction of parliamentary political practices in Sweden. Consequently, both “innovating ideologists” and “apologists” tried to redescribe the political tradition. The task of an “innovating ideologist” was to redescribe the tradition in a manner which would show that the role of the political Estates was to be reduced. It was important to argue that the Estates were not the original form of political representation. Even if the Estates had served the country well, it was nevertheless necessary to maintain that they were outdated and actually divided the nation. An “apologist” tried to affirm that the Estates, the Nobility in particular, had often saved the country from foreign threats as well as from absolutism. The current dangers were

236 parliamentary rule and democracy, and, as a consequence, the decreased power of the monarch. Different interpretations of the Age of Liberty (1719—1772) are of special interest in this respect. Both sides of the debate viewed it in a negative light. For the opponents of the Bill, it was a period of parliamentary rule and party divisions. The reason for these had been the lack of the separation of powers between the King and the Riksdag. The supporters of the Bill, in turn, considered the period as characterised by the rule of the Estates. Both sides viewed the absolutist regimes of the monarchs before and after the Age of Liberty pejoratively. Another common consensus dealt with the idea of free and egalitarian origin of the political culture. No-one was willing to question it. The rhetorical redescription of the meaning of the 1809 Instrument of Government and, in particular, the memorandum of the 1810 Committee on the Constitution was highly important. Both sides of the debate used the “men of 1809” as their support. An “apologist” argued that the constitution of 1809 was based on the idea of the separation of powers which was in danger if the Bill was passed. The Riksdag Act of 1810 was a natural consequence of the Instrument of Government, the argument went. As the basic idea of the constitution was commonly positively evaluated, the purpose of an “apologist” was to maintain that the existing political system was in accordance with the idea of the “men of 1809”. For many supporters of the Bill, the rhetorical strategy was more complicated. The “men of 1809” were positively evaluated, the Riksdag Act of 1810 was not. The memorandum of the 1810 Committee on the Constitution, which stated that the Estates had divided the nation, was used to support the demands for the reform. The “men of 1809” and the memorandum of 1810 were rhetorically associated with each other in order to show that the original idea of the “men of 1809” had been to abolish the political Estates. Thus there was a possibility – it was hoped – to be critical against the Instrument of the Government and still consider the “men of 1809” as a part of the appreciated tradition. The opponents of the Bill argued constantly that it was based on foreign “theories” instead of the domestic tradition. The argument was powerful, since hardly anyone wanted openly to maintain that “theories” should replace the continuity of the political system. However, an “apologist”, too, based his ideas of organism and continuity on foreign theories. Echoes of Burke were clearly heard in his argumentation. Yet, it was less openly articulated. The supporters of the Bill referred to Norwegian and Danish systems rather than to “theories” in order to avoid the label of “theorists”. It was much better to argue using “the public opinion” and “the demands of the times” in general than to present some theoretical patterns. It was important to find good examples in the domestic political past. The “men of 1809” and the memorandum of 1810, as well as Geijer, were then of crucial importance. The political theorist who was used by both sides of the debate was Tocqueville, since his views on the inevitability of the progress of democracy, and his cautious attitude towards its consequences was well suited – selectively – for both sides of the debate.

237 When the debate on parliamentary reform is understood as a contest between an “innovating ideologist” and an “apologist”, and, moreover, when it is understood as their attempt to redescribe the political situation as well as the tradition, special attention must be paid to the contest over the concepts which were used in these endeavours. There were two main forms of this contest. Firstly, it was about a concept. Then the right meaning of the concept was at issue. Secondly, it was the question of who had the ‘right’ to use a concept. In other words, the contest dealt with the question of who was able to speak with a concept. For the conservative opponents of the Bill, the concept of “freedom” was something that was inherited in the tradition, something that was to be defended. The passing of the Bill would jeopardise the existence of “freedom”. The country was free because there was neither foreign oppression, absolutist rule of despots, nor rule of the mob. The power of the masses was the worst threat imagined. The supporters of the Bill, too, often appealed to the idea of inherited freedom. However, there were some exceptions. In a critical article, Politisk Tidskrift questioned the general view that the Swedes were, or had been, free (Politisk Tidskrift 5/1862 [1863], 298). The radical opponents of the Bill, for example the newspapers Söndagsbladet and Fäderneslandet, upheld the rhetoric which pointed out the lack of freedom in the country, as well. More common was to maintain, however, that the political life was free if the “public opinion” was taken into account in political decisions. The concepts of “nation” and “fatherland” were contested. Both concepts were used in a manner which would suggest that the contest dealt with the ability to convincingly use the concepts rather than to give them a new meaning. However, the concept of “nation” gained several different interpretations. By examining how it was associated (cf. Perelman 1996, 57-74) with other terms and how it was contrasted against its counter concept (cf. Koselleck 1985, 163), i.e. how the concept was used in the cases of “identification” and “division” (Burke 1950, 22-23), it is possible to shed light on the contested character of the concept as well as on the semantic field of which the concept was a part. My analysis has been synchronic rather than diachronic. However, the rhetoric of the debate dealt with redescriptions which were to a great extent about the past. Thus, the diachronic dimension was brought into the debate by these redescriptions. There are several examples of “the nation” being presented as opposed to the Estates and classes. It was argued that it should be “the nation” which would be represented in the Riksdag, not any particular classes or corporate interests (e.g. Preste-ståndets Protokoll 3 1862-1863, 146 [Almqvist]). The concept of “nation” was also associated with “the people” and contrasted with “caste interests” (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1861, 40). 1 Moreover, the supporters of the Bill associated “the nation” with “the principle of persons”. As discussed in 1

”[R]epresentationen, icke är svenska folkets organ, med ett ord en nationalrepresentation uti full och giltig bemärkelse, utan hufvudsakligast blott ett uttryck för sådana kastintressen, för hvilka alla stora och genomgripande folk- och nationalitetsfrågor äro mera och mindre likgiltiga.” (Politisk Tidskrift 3/1861, 40).

238 chapter seven, Geijer was the main authority of this kind of use of the concept. “The principle of persons” was closely linked with “the principle of associations” which meant that “the nation” was considered as consisting of individual persons, who were gathered in free associations, which were formed without any limitations of Estate privileges. Following the “liberal” ideals these slogans expressed, “the nation” was also identified with “the public opinion”. Among the opponents of the Bill, “the nation” was associated with “the King” and “the Estates” (Palmstierna 1865, 5). The “apologists” understood “the nation” as an organic whole. This view was not necessarily in conflict with the views of the pro-reform side, since “the principle of associations” was understood as a transformed version of the idea of organic togetherness, rather than opposed to it. Both sides of the debate usually took “the nation” as the bearer of tradition and as the unit which was based on common origin and experiences. However, this view was also criticised. For example, Politisk Tidskrift required “political life” within “the nation” and was critical towards the rhetoric of “originality”. The argument was directed against “the historical school” in Sweden: Dessa utgöra hos oss den s. k. historiska skolan, med sin välbekanta fraseologi on ’nationalitet’, ’ursprungliglighet’, ’härmningslusta’, ’främmande lån’’ m. m., - en skola, hvilken nationen i icke ringa grad har att tillskrifva, att dess friare utveckling blifvit hämmad och dess politiska lif fortfarande qvarhållet på samma punkt af betydelselös nullitet. (Politisk Tidskrift 1/1860, 59-60).

It can be interpreted that Politisk Tidskrift described “the nation” in terms of free political life instead of originality. In other words, there was an interpretation of “the nation” which can be viewed as having an aspect of voluntaristic characteristics instead of merely primordial ones. However, the interpretation did not deny the existence of the ancient nation, but, instead, maintained that the nation had lost its original character. As presented in chapter ten, the debate dealt particularly with the historical role of the Estates. It was commonly agreed that the Estates had represented organic interests of society. The supporters of the Bill labelled the Estates as the bearers of privileged interests. The system of class elections was likewise condemned. The supporters of the Bill spoke often in the name of “the whole people”. They also argued that “the public opinion” should be represented. Consequently, it should be the unprivileged nation that ought to be the source of righteous representation. However, the pro-reform side was by no means free from the idea of representation of interests, as discussed in chapter eight. Despite their rhetoric of “persons” as well as their criticism against the privileges, there was a clear line of demarcation which was employed in order to exclude the uneducated masses from the participation in the formation of representation. To represent the interests of the educated people would be the best way to guarantee a representation of the interests of the whole. Moreover, the language of “interests” was used in order to

239 legitimise the need of the reform. It was argued that new social interests made the Estates outdated. The application of the system of census was difficult for the supporters of the Bill. To argue against privileges and, at the same time, for census asked for considerable rhetorical skills. As did nineteenth-century liberals in general, Swedish reformers applied the idea of citoyen capacitaire in order to legitimise the exclusion from the right to vote. One had to have certain capacities so as to have a say in political matters. However, these capacities were in practice defined in terms of property and incomes. The idea of citoyen propriétaire followed the idea of a citizen with capacities. As discussed in chapters five, seven, eight, and nine, it was a common solution of nineteenth-century liberalism to demarcate the right to vote by criteria which were bound by property and income. It was the solution Sieyès chose in his Qu’est-ce que le Tiers Etat?, and it was used after him by most of the theoreticians and constructors of political representation. The census was, as it was maintained, the way to distinguish those who had capacities to participate in political life from uneducated and labouring masses. “The capacity” was most often defined in terms of wealth. Thus, the idea of citoyen capacitaire was in practice applied in terms of citoyen propriétaire. The idea that the right to participate in the formation of political representation was reserved for “the politically thinking part of the nation” – as De Geer put it – was clearly a version of the idea of citoyen capacitaire. However, the application of census based this demarcation of ‘the political nation’ on economic wealth instead of some formal educational criteria. De Geer never thought that to “think politically” should be associated with political awakening of the masses. Moreover, even the radical national liberals rejected “the dabbling in politics”. Together with the census followed the idea of representing different interests, despite the general appeal to the representation of “the whole”. In fact, it was admitted that “the basic principle of national representation” was limited so that the representation of “the most important interests” of society was guaranteed. “The mobile element” of society was meant to be represented by the Second Chamber, “the existing” by the First Chamber. The 1863 Committee on the Constitution stated as follows: Utskottet tror sig hafva visat, att detta förslag är tidsenligt, då det hyllar grundsatsen af en nationalrepresentation utan annan inskränkning, än som varit nödvändig att gifva samhället en någorlunda säker borgen, det målsmännen för dess vigtigaste intressen sjelfva innehafva en oberoende samhällsställning; att det är betryggande, då det vid sidan af den representationens afdelning, som företrädesvis skulle representera dess rörliga element, ställt med lika rättigheter en annan, vald för längre tid och med mera begränsade valbarhetsvilkor, hvarigenom den, utan att representera vissa stånd eller klasser, likväl skulle förutsätta ett större intresse för det bestående och en mera omfattande erfarenhet[.] (KU 7 1863, 13).

Thus, the revolutionary idea of national representation was known to the Committee, yet not fully followed. In other words, the Committee was conscious of the idea of national representation which was thought of as being

240 unprivileged and which did not base itself on the representation of interests. According to the architects of the reform, the proposal was “in accordance with the times” because it followed the idea of “national representation without any other restrictions than” what was needed in order to give the society “a safe guarantee”. This guarantee was ensured by the application of the census, and the division of the representation into two chambers. The conservative opponents of the Bill made a case for the inner contradiction of this kind of argument. It was asked, how plausible were the “liberal” principles if the protagonists of the reform did not dare to follow their main principle to the end? How to be equal and speak in the name of “persons” and, at the same time, base the proposal on “plutocratic” criteria? De Geer and other supporters of the Bill argued that the proposal was not plutocratic in character, but it contained necessary guarantees against “democracy” and the power of the uneducated masses. Some radical national liberals clearly had difficulties with this sort of walk on the tightrope. The rhetoric of Politisk Tidskrift and the newspaper Fäderneslandet shows that there often were both supporting and criticising arguments side by side in papers. It was partly a question of a rhetorical strategy – the purpose of which was to show some threats as well as to ask for more than what was possible to get. Yet, it also was a sign of confusion. Maybe the support for the Bill was sometimes presented in terms which had more radical meanings than the contents of the Bill would have allowed, in order to hide the scepticism the radicals felt. The national liberals did not have too much room for radicalism. In fact, there was an opposition against the Bill on the ‘left’ side of the political field. The concept of “national representation” was then given a pejorative meaning. For example, the newspaper Söndagsbladet contrasted “national representation” with the “representation of the people” (Söndagsbladet 14.5.1865). Fäderneslandet wrote in 1863, when it still was against the Bill, that De Geer’s proposal dealt with “plutocratic representation” rather than the “representation of the people” (Fäderneslandet 14.11.1863). The criticism these radical papers voiced was presented in a quite marginal position and it was not a threat for De Geer and his Bill. However, it offered some arguments to conservative opponents of the Bill. It also showed the limits of “the national” in the national liberal rhetoric by replacing “nation” by “the people”. The rhetoric of “time” played a crucial role in the struggle for the reform. For example, the 1863 Committee on the Constitution maintained that the Bill was “in accordance with the times”. Politisk Tidskrift argued in favour of progress and stated that “each and everyone who wants to go forward” should work for “the rebirth of the nation”. Those who supported the Bill had “the time” on their side in terms of “horizon of expectations”. The concepts of “progress” and “public opinion” were linked with the concepts of “nation” and “fatherland” in the national liberal rhetoric. The idea was that there was a general progress of civilisation which had its expression in “public opinion”. Consequently, it was possible to demand the passing of the Bill by stating that general progress demanded it. The language of “time”, “progress”, and “public

241 opinion” was problematic for the conservative opponents of the Bill. Accordingly, they had difficulties with the rhetoric of “patriotism”, since the concept was closely linked with “public opinion” and “progress” in the proreform campaign. Some conservatives tried to appeal to “progress” in their defence of the existing system. An “apologist” tried to take the favourably evaluated “progress” on the side of the opponents of the Bill by stating that the progress of society in fact suggested that no drastic changes were needed. Progress would take care of the needed changes in the political system. The rhetoric of “time” and “opinion” can be compared with the rhetorical situation of the English parliamentary reform at the beginning of the 1830s. According to Steinmetz, ”time” was a central figure in the rhetoric of the reform supporters in England. The risk of unrest and lacking the benefits of the reform was always present. The task of a politician was to recognise the right moment in linear time. The figure of ”time” was often linked with the concept of ”public opinion”. ”Opinion” played a key role in the rhetoric of Whigs, whereas Tories tried to deny the relevance and importance of ”opinion” and argued for a competence of the representatives as well as for deliberation. Whigs were able to use ”public opinion” spontaneously, while Tories tried to react to it afterwards. Accordingly, Tories lacked a consistent attitude towards ”public opinion”. In the 1860s, they, too, were capable of speaking in the name of ”public opinion”. (Steinmetz 1993, 243-259, 291). Swedish conservatives were, in the 1860s, in quite a similar position as the Tories had been in the early 1830s with their inability to use “opinion” effectively. In Sweden, the supporters of the reform also legitimised the need for the reform by referring to the domestic tradition. Thus, it cannot be concluded that “the space of experience” would have lost its position as a crucial point of reference to “the horizon of expectations”. Rather, the supporters of the Bill had a wider arsenal of arguments due to their ability to speak more convincingly in terms of the future than those who were against the Bill, and who had problems with the concepts of “progress” and “public opinion”. “The opinions of the twinkling of an eye” were described as “anti-Swedish” (Borgare-Ståndets protokoll I 1863, 462). It was also argued that “the wind of the opinion” was to be stopped (Preste-Ståndets protocoll I 1865, 385-386). The opponents of the Bill were not able to give any positively evaluated picture of the future. They tried to appeal to “the progress”, but they were not able to give it a new meaning which would have given them a possibility to create a convincing view of a better future. They were more or less forced to adjust and respond to “the demands of the times” without being able to question those demands. Consequently, the reform of 1866 was promulgated by using the rhetoric of necessity. As it was argued, social changes, the progress of political ideas and constitutions in other countries, as well as “public opinion”, all spoke for the reform. The idea of the inevitability of the reform was not shared by all participants of the debate, yet the sense of inevitability was strong. The “public opinion” was not on the side of the opponents of the Bill. The concept of “public opinion” was often used in a manner which implies that it was beyond

242 human actors. However, “public opinion” was actively created, and it can be viewed as a relevant audience for political life rather than just a sort of Zeitgeist. In this sense, the reform signifies the breakthrough of new political culture in which it was necessary to appeal to “the public”. The national liberals used the rhetoric of “fatherland” and “patriotism” in their campaign for the Bill. The concept of “patriotism” was often used as a commonly accepted rhetorical agreement in political rhetoric. It was important for political actors to be able to speak in the name of “the fatherland”. Those who supported the Bill were more successful in doing so. They were able to combine “patriotism” with concepts like “public opinion” and “time” and were thus able to imply a certain necessity in their demands. Those who were against the Bill were losing the hold on “patriotism” mainly because they were not effective enough in using the rhetoric of “opinion” and “time”. It has been argued that the era of associations in the middle of the nineteenth century was a period of patriotic consensus. Expressions like ”general interest”, ”fatherland’s well-being”, and ”true patriot”, which were heard in free associations throughout the country, have been taken as signs of patriotic ideology which was generated in order to have citizens ”meet in the middle” (Jansson 1985, 242-243). Despite the ethos of togetherness that was the elementary part of the rhetoric of ”patriotism”, the consensual view on ”patriotism” is, however, somewhat misleading. The concept of “patriotism” was contested. Different understandings of “patriotism” followed the inner tension within the history of the concept. In the republican tradition, “patriotism” referred to a political citizenship, civic virtues and laws. However, it also carried within it loyal meanings, which were inspired by understandings of a real or mythological common origin and by meanings that come from a privileged hierarchy of society. The national liberals had an explicitly political concept of “patriotism”, but this political civic patriotism was often combined with an ethos of togetherness, which was based on the idea of a natural togetherness. The rhetoric of patriotism thus opened up to two directions. On the one hand, it eliminated differences and, on the other hand, it was available for demands for political activity. The national liberals tried to use both ways, but the ethos of togetherness, combined with social and educational paternalism, had a tendency to override intended political aspects. Actually, this is one of the reasons why the rhetoric of patriotism can have said to have played an important role during the debates on the Bill. One could show respectability by using the rhetoric of patriotism. This way one could limit the politicising potential the reform opened. The old was to be reformed, not to be left out. It can be concluded that the national liberal idea of “fatherland” was based more on a paternalistic social implication, than on an idea of a political citizenship. Potentially radical political consequences were taken back and made harmless. After the question of political representation was solved, the national liberals began to lose their grip on the concepts of “nation” and “patriotism”. The field was open for the conservatives during the end of the century. Before the reform, the national liberals were able to use the question of

243 an unsolved representation in their national cause, but the patriotism they had wanted to show had not allowed them to take distance from the moderate reform. After the reform, the national liberals presented more radical demands, but these were then presented in a marginal position. Accordingly, it has not been common to call Sweden after 1866 “the new nation”. August Strindberg, who was also an excellent political observer, named his satire about the Era of Oscar II Det nya riket, “The New Empire”, in 1882 (Strindberg 1992). The reform was not meant to be radical, nor it was. In many respects, it was quite conservative in character. The number of those who had the right to take part in the formation of the representative body was after the reform as low as it had been before. There were no intentions to introduce universal suffrage, nor democracy. Rather, the reform can be viewed in a light of conservative strategy. The dynamics of political reforms are often that the reforms are made in conservative purposes in order to avoid uncontrollable changes in the future. It was meant that the principles of the 1809 Instrument of Government should be intact. Formally, the reform did not touch upon the existing separation of powers. Even the most radical supporters of the Bill were relatively quiet about parliamentarism. However, the 1866 Riksdag Act has been interpreted as a crucial step towards parliamentarism. As has been correctly noted, annual sessions of the Riksdag changed the rhythm of political life. Although the debate on the reform dealt to a great extent with the past and the tradition, the present became a more important point of reference than what it had been earlier. The Estates lost their formal political status. The King did not become so weak as the opponents of the reform Bill had thought. However, the centre of political power changed. Even if the constitution was not formally changed, and even if there was no parliamentary rule after the reform, the old centre of the King and the Estates lost its position. When the Estates were no longer represented at the Riksdag, something new came to their place. This study had shown that this new was often articulated in terms of “nation”. Consequently, this change can be viewed as a sign of the formation a modern nation-state. As the Estates before, the “nation” that was represented at the Riksdag was exclusive in character. The “masses”, including women, were excluded from the “political nation”. Moreover, it was more or less defined in terms of common origin and common tradition. The deliberative potential that was involved in the reform of political representation did not actualise as the “nation” was understood exclusively and traditionally rather than politically.


EDUSTUS, KANSAKUNTA JA AIKA Poliittinen retoriikka Ruotsin vuoden 1866 valtiopäiväreformissa Tutkimus analysoi kansallista ja patrioottista retoriikkaa Ruotsin vuoden 1866 valtiopäiväreformista käydyn keskustelun yhteydessä. Säätyvaltiopäivät päättivät joulukuussa 1865 lopettaa poliittiset säädyt. Asia ratkesi, kun aatelisääty äänesti hallituksen reformiesityksen puolesta. Papisto odotti aatelin päätöstä, talonpojat ja porvaristo olivat jo hyväksyneet ehdotuksen. Tukimuksen pääkysymys on, miten käsite ”national representation” ymmärrettiin 1860-luvun Ruotsissa. Kun reformiesitys koski säätyjen lakkauttamista poliittisen edustuksen instituutioina, keskeiseksi nousi kysymys siitä, miten uusi edustuslaitos tulisi organisoida sekä siitä, mikä tai ketkä ovat edustettuina. Ranskan vallankumouksen kansalliskokous yhdisti ”edustuksen” ja ”kansakunnan” käsitteet. Emmanuel Sieyès, kansalliskokouksen arkkitehti, katsoi, että säätyjen ja muiden privilegioiden sijasta edustettuna tuli olla privilegioihin perustumaton ”kansakunta”. Kuitenkin osa väestöstä rajattin sen ulkopuolelle. Kysymys äänioikeudesta ja parlamenttireformeista tematisoitui 1800-luvulla tätä taustaa vasten euroopplaisissa keskusteluissa. Samalla kiistanalaiseksi tuli se, keiden katsottiin kuuluvan ”kansakuntaan”. Myös ”patriootin” ja ”kansalaisen” käsitteet saivat erilaisia tulkintoja näissä keskusteluissa. ”Kansakunnan” ja ”patriotismin” retoriikka oli keskeisessä roolissa ruotsalaisessa 1860-luvun keskustelussa. Reformipyrkimys nähtiin ”patrioottisena” seikkana, jossa ”kansakunnan” ja ”isänmaan” edistyminen oli kysymyksessä. ”Ajan” ja ”edistyksen” retoriikka oli läheisesti nivoutunut ”kansakunta”-kieleen. Tulevaisuuspuheesta huolimatta tärkeintä oli kuvata menneisyys tavalla, joka oikeutti ja perusteli reformin. Reformikeskustelu


voidaankin nähdä historialle annettujen eri tulkintojen välisen kamppailun valossa. Toisin kuin valtaosassa vallitsevia tulkintoja, reformi nähdään poliittisena kamppailutilanteena, jossa valittavana oli useita vaihtoehtoja ilman että mikään osapuoli oli tietoinen reformin seurauksista. Tämän tutkimuksen tulkinta perustuu ajankohdan poliittisten toimijoiden omiin käsityksiin ja tekoihin sen sijaan, että reformi nähtäisiin yksinomaan seurauksena ja heijastumana sosiaalisista ja taloudellisista muutoksista tai yleisestä ’demokratian etenemisestä’. Valtiopäiväreformia koskevaa kamppailua on tutkittu ensisijaisesti valtiopäiväistuntojen pöytäkirjojen sekä reformia koskeneen pamflettikirjallisuuden avulla. Lisäksi huomioon on otettu keskeisiä sanomalehtiä sekä reformia kampanjoimaan perustettu aikakausjulkaisu Politisk Tidskrift. Tutkimusongelmaa lähestytään retorisen analyysin ja käsitehistorian kysymyksenasetteluin ja metodisin valinnoin. Poliittiset käsitteet ymmärretään historiallisina sekä aina vähintäinkin potentiialisesti kiistanalaisina ja siten samalla eräänlaisina poliittisen kamppailun solmukohtina. Tämän käsityksen mukaan käsitteille annetaan erilaisia tulkintoja ja niiden ’käyttöoikeudesta’ kamppaillaan. Käsitteet muuttuvat, kun niitä käytetään. Muuttuneet käsitteet puolestaan voivat avata mahdollisuuden uudelle tavalle ymmärtää politiikkaa sekä uudenlaiselle poliittiselle toiminnalle. Tutkimuksessa on kolme osaa. Ensimmäinen osa muodostaa johdannon sekä taustan empiiriselle analyysille. Luku 1 on johdanto, luku 2 kuvaa 1860luvun reformikeskustelun poliiittisia osapuolia ja positioita sekä yleistä tapahtumien kulkua. Luku 3 esittelee yleisimmät tulkinnat reformin syistä ja sen merkityksestä. Luku 4 esittelee käsitehistoriallista lähtökohtaa ja metodisia valintoja. Toinen osa alkaa luvulla 5, joka on teoreettinen ja kansainvälinen tausta ”edustuksen” ja ”kansakunnan” käsitteiden yhdistelmälle. Samalla se myös analysoi tätä yhdistelmää valikoitujen poliittisten ajattelijoiden teksteihin tukeutuen. Luku 6 syventää analyysia tematisoimalla edellisen luvun keskustelua temporaalisten aspektien näkökulmasta. Kolmas osa esittelee ”edustuksen” ja ”kansakunnan” käsitteiden historiaa Ruotsissa (luku 7) sekä analysoi 1860-luvun reformidebattia (luvut 8, 9 ja 10). Tutkimus päättyy luvun 11 yhteenvetoon. Poliittisia oikeuksia määrittävät parlamenttireformit voidaan nähdä eräänlaisena mallitapauksena käsitteistä käytäville kamppailuille samoin kuin mahdollisille käsitemuutoksille. Keskustelu reformista on nähtävä ainakin kahdessa valossa. Yhtäältä reformitilanne ymmärretään retorisena kamppailutilanteena, jolloin se on suhtautettava ajankohtansa historialliseen kontestiinsa. On tarpeen tuntea niin kielellinen, tapahtumahistoriallinen, sosiaalis-taloudellinen kuin intellektuaalinenkin konteksti. Toisaalta reformitilanne ymmärretään historiallisena siinä mielessä, että tutkittavalla keskustelulla on oma historiansa. Lisäksi siinä käytettävillä käsitteillä on omat historiansa. Nämä historiat ovat usein keskenään ristiriitaisia ja siten kiistanalaisia. Reformikamppailun tutkiminen voidaankin nähdä eräänlaisena


retorisen uudelleenkuvauksen tilanteena, jossa sen hetkistä kamppailutilannetta luodaan ja pyritään hallitsemaan antamalla historialle tarkoituksenmukaisia kuvauksia. Reformitilanne voidaan nähdä myös Quentin Skinnerin termein ilmaistuna eräänlaisena ”innovatiivisen ideologin” ja ”apologistin” välisenä kamppailuna. ”Innovatiivisen ideologin” tehtävänä on käyttää vallitsevia kielellisiä konventiota siten, että arveluttavalta vaikuttava toiminta voidaan perustella hyväksyttävänä. ”Apologisti” puolestaan pyrkii kuvaamaan vallitsevia asiantiloja myönteisesti arvottavin termein. Näiden retoristen strategioiden yhdistelmä voidaan nähdä käsitteiden merkityksestä ja käyttöikeudesta käytävänä kamppailuna. Erityisesti Ruotsin valtiopäiväreformin pääarkkitehti, ministeri Louis De Geer, oli ”innovattivisen ideologin” osassa. Hänen pyrkimyksenään oli kuvata reformiesitys siten, että se oli poliittisen tradition mukainen. Samalla hänen tarkoitus oli kuitenkin tehdä suuria muutoksia traditionaaliseksi katsottuun edustuslaitokseen. Tässä tarkoituksessa hän vetosi ehdotuksensa ”orgaaniseen” luonteeseen. Kun säädyt olivat aikaisemmin olleet takeena edustuksen orgaanisuudesta, oli nyt sama rooli maakuntien edustuslaitoksilla, jotka valitsisivat keskuudestaan ensimmäisen kamarin jäsenet. Myös reformia vastustaneet ”apologistit” vetosivat yhteiskunnan organismiluonteeseen. He katsoivat, että hyvin toimiva organismi oli uhattuna, mikäli reformiesitys hyväksyttäisiin. Tässä tarkoituksessa oli sopivaa vedota ruotsalaisten ”vapauteen”, joka siis olisi uhattuna. ”Vapauden” olemassaoloa oli reformiesityksen puolustajienkaan vaikea kiistää. Se oli keskeinen osa poliittiseen traditioon liittynyttä itseymmärrystä. Käsite ”national representation” sai tutkitussa debatissa kaksi päätulkintaa. Yhtäältä se tarkoitti traditionaalisesti poliittisen edustuksen instituutiota, jolloin säädyt kuuluivat käsitteen piiriin. Erityisesti reformiesitystä vastustaneet konservatiivit viittasivat historialliseen ”kansalliseen edustukseen”, mutta myös monet reformia kannattaneet ymmärsivät säätyedustuksen ”kansallisena”. Toisaalta tällainen käsitys sai vastaansa tulkinnan, jonka mukaan ollakseen ”kansallinen” edustuslaitos ei voinut perustua säätyprivilegioille. Eräissä tapauksissa reformi nähtiin ”kansakunnan poliittisena uudestisyntymisenä”. Tulkinta muistuttaa selvästi Ranskan vallankumouksen käsitystä siitä, että poliittinen edustus konstitutioi ”kansakunnan” pikemminkin kuin heijastaa tai kuvaa sitä. Tällainen radikalismi usein kuitenkin pehmeni, kun ”kansakunta” ymmärrettiin voluntaristisen tulkinnan rinnalla myös yhteiseen taustaan ja traditioon liittyvänä luonnollisena kokonaisuutena. ”Patriotismin” retoriikka oli tästä hyvä osoitus. Radikaalejakin poliittisia tavoitteita esittäneet kansallisen liberalismin nimissä esiintyneet reformin kannattajat käyttivät patrioottista retoriikkaa käsitteen republikaanisessa merkityksessä, jolloin paino oli poliittisilla oikeuksilla ja velvollisuuksilla. Kuten usein on laita ”patriotismin” kanssa, tähän retoriikkaan kuului kuitenkin vetoaminen luonnolliseen alkuperään ja paikkaan. ”Isänmaa” oli viimekädessä kuitenkin isän maata.


Reformia kannattaneiden retoriikassa oli keskeinen sija ”edistyksen” ja ”yleisen mielipiteen” käsitteillä. Niihin vedottiin ja niiden nimissä puhuttiin. Tällainen retoriikka yhdistyi ”patriotismin” ja ”kansakunnan” retoriikkaan. Juuri konservatiivien kyvyttömyys käyttää vakuuttavasti edistyskieltä sekä ”mielipidettä” teki heistä heikompia myös ”kansakunnan” ja ”patriotismin” suhteen. Konservatiivit käyttivät argumenttinsa etupäässä parlamentarismin uhasta sekä vallanjakoperiaatteen vesittymisestä varoitteluun. Reformiesityksen mukaan valtiopäivät tulisivat kokoontumaan vuosittain, mikä oli suurin syy huoleen. Reformin puolustajat välttivät ”parlamentarismista” puhumista. Se ei selvästikään ollut yleisesti tavoiteltavaa eikä ainakaan poliittisesti viisasta. Vuosittaisten valtiopäivien tulo poliittiseen järjestelmään vuoden 1866 jälkeen kuitenkin temporalisoi poliittista kulttuuria. Konservatiivien pelot eivät sellaisenaan toteutuneet, mutta ’päivänpolitiikka’ tuli aikaisempaa merkittävämmäksi. Menneisyysretoriikka oli ollut reformikamppailun keskeisin piirre. Tulevaisuusretoriikan hallinta vahvisti mahdollisuuksia menneisyyden sopivaan kuvaamiseen ja nykyisyysretoriikan hallitsivat parhaiten ne, jotka pystyivät yhdistämään nämä kaksi edellistä. Vaikka ”kansakunta” esitettiinkin reformimyönteisessä retoriikassa usein privilegioista vapaana ja ”henkilöperiaatteeseen” perustuneena, se oli hyvin eksklusiivisesti rajattu. ”Massat” ja ”epäitsenäiset”, joihin automaattisesti laskettiin kaikki naiset huolimatta teoreettisesta äänioikeudesta ensimmäisen kamarin vaaleissa, olivat suljetut ulos ”poliittisesta kansakunnasta”. Tästä piti huolen ennen kaikkea korkea tulo- ja varallisuusraja, joka säädettiin toisen kamarin vaaleihin. Ensimmäiseen kamariin oli äänioikeus alhaisempi, mutta se oli varallisuuteen perustuen asteittainen. Vaalikelpoisuus oli rajattu vain kaikkein varakkaimmalle pienelle vähemmistölle. Tämä antoi reformiesitystä vastustaneille ”työväen” nimissä esiintyneille lehdille aiheen pitää käsitettä ”national representation” pejoratiivisena. Heille oikean edustuksen nimi oli ”folk representation”. Poliittisen edustuksen sitominen ”kansakunnan” käsitteeseen oli siis kiistelty radikaalista perspektiivistä. Se ei kuitenkaan tullut juurikaan näkyviin reformista käydyssä valtiopäivädebatissa. Reformin kohtalosta keskusteltiin konservatiivien ehdolla, sillä heillä oli mahdollisuus kaataa se. Reformia puolustaneiden ”kansakunta”-kieli puolestaan oli ”kansan” nimissä puhumista enemmän kuin kuin pyrkimystä inklusoida ”kansa” poliittisen edustuksen piiriin. Pikemminkin kuin eksklusioiden poistamisen valossa, reformiretoriikka voidaan nähdä uusien eksklusiivisten kriteerien näkökulmasta. Kun säädyt menettivät asemansa vallan keskuksena, syntyi tilalle uusi keskus joka ymmärrettin rajattuna tai naturalistisena ”kansakuntana” pikemminkin kuin deliberoivana parlamenttina.

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