Kringflackande främlingar då och nu

Om fattigdom och rörlighet i genealogisk belysning


  • Magnus Dahlstedt
  • Simon Härnbro
  • Viktor Vesterberg


Roving strangers then and now – a genealogical inquiry on poverty and mobility In this essay, we conduct a genealogical inquiry, shedding light on the classical social political problem concerning the mobility of people living in poverty. The aim is to problematize the contemporary debate about poverty and mobility by genealogically tracing the contemporary category of marginalized EU-migrants, relating this to how the so-called gypsy-issue was formulated in the 1950s and the vagrancy debate in the 1920s. Empirically we focus governmental reports from these time periods. Our main findings are that the mobility of poor people today and in the 1920s are understood from a moralizing standpoint, positioning the poor as not belonging to the Swedish national welfare state. In contrast, this issue was in the 1950s understood as a welfare concern for the expanding state. The political solution in the 1950s was inclusion by assimilation, whilst today and in the 1920s, the solution is a will to exclusion.