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The Social Consequences of Literacy in Medieval Scandinavia (Utrecht Studies in Medieval Literacy) [Hardcover]

The Social Consequences of Literacy in Medieval Scandinavia (Utrecht Studies in Medieval Literacy) [Hardcover]

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Item description for The Social Consequences of Literacy in Medieval Scandinavia (Utrecht Studies in Medieval Literacy) by Arnved Nedkvitne...

Between 1000 and 1536 Scandinavia was transformed from a conglomerate of largely pre-state societies to societies characterized by state governments. Its most important single aspect was the increasing monopolization of 'legitimate' violence by the state. But Church and State also used literacy to strengthen social control, and they did so in central and important areas: jurisdiction, religious conformity and accounting. Thus, they hoped to control the areas they understood to be most important. Their intentions were largely fulfilled. The main driving force behind the transition to state societies was the monopolization of legitimate violence, but the use of literacy made a difference as well. By writing down oral 'laws', and by increasingly resorting to writing in traditionally oral judicial procedures, the state gradually gained control of institutionalized social practices with a minimum of 'legitimate violence'. Written laws made social norms more precise and easier to change, a necessity in an increasingly complex society. Writing also strengthened social cohesion by creating common religious rituals, procedures and narratives. Written accounts made taxation more stable and therefore seem more just and acceptable. The basic social transformations of the period cannot be attributed to increasing literacy alone. But the written word rendered the reorganization of society in Scandinavia more peaceful and gradual, strengthened social conformity and cohesion.



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Item Specifications...


Pages   290
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 6.25" Height: 9.5"
Weight:   1.6 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Publisher   Brepols Publishers
ISBN  2503514502  
ISBN13  9782503514505  


Availability  0 units.


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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > History > World > General
2Books > Subjects > History > World > Medieval



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