Book (electronic)

Myter om velferd og velferdsstaten (2018)

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"Post-war expansion of the welfare state is one of the most central changes in Norwegian society
today and is often a topic in public debate. When certain conceptions about the welfare state
are developed and they are no longer based on systematic analyses but rather ideas and attitudes,
they can turn into myths. However, to be termed myths requires documentation, and
here social research plays an important role. This book rejects and elaborates central myths in
the public debate about the welfare state. The book is structured as an anthology, written by six
welfare sociologists at the University of Bergen. The first article introduces the history of The
Myth of the Welfare State, a book published by Pax in 1970, then revised a few years later, and
with a follow-up version in 1995, 25 years after that. The book became a flaming light within
the social policy debate, because it criticized the welfare state for not solving the problem of
poverty. Although this problem, relatively seen, is reduced, the following five articles show
that, within the framework of the welfare state, there is room for new important critical discussions.
One myth focuses on the idea that a combination of a comprehensive state and an active
civil society with much voluntary work is not possible. Another concerns the idea that welfare
results in dependency. A third is about the "Elder Boom". A fourth concerns single mothers
and assumes that these unlawfully try to get access to welfare. And finally, the last discusses
the ideas that crime should result in punishment and "prison pain". Together, the articles are a
contribution to make the debate about the welfare state richer and more dynamic."


welfare state, Norway, myths, society, welfare expantion, public discourse, velferdsstaten, myter, forestillinger, offentlig debatt, sosialpolitikk


Cappelen Damm Akademisk/NOASP (Nordic Open Access Scholarly Publishing)